There’s a reason you opted for a spacious, open floor plan. You love the open design, the flow of energy and light through your home, the flexibility of your furniture layout, and the improved sociability and communication. There’s just one problem: the large, empty wall space.
Open floor plans and traditional floor plans alike can have large expanses of empty wall space, but an open floor plan may have a larger area because of the way the design connects two separate areas into one.
For instance, a home with a dining area that adjoins the living room may have a large wall that connects the two rooms. Essentially, the wall is shared by both rooms, giving you double the wall space to deal with in terms of style and design.
There are several design faux pas you can make while decorating a large, empty wall, but the team at Modloft can help you avoid those design mistakes by showing you how to make the most of your wall space and style it with ease.
We’ll discuss optional methods for decorating a large wall space, give you some tips on how to do it properly, and give you a few examples of what not to do.
Large Wall Styling Methods
You’ve seen it before; a huge wall in a friend’s home with a tiny painting centered directly in the middle. Or perhaps you remember a family member’s house and their massive “collage” of portraits haphazardly hung on their living room wall.
We get it. Large walls are hard to style, and unless you have a beloved canvas that’s big enough to cover the space, it can be a headache trying to figure out how to make it look tasteful, complete, and not crowded.
There are a few different methods of styling large walls.
It probably goes without saying that one of the easiest ways to style a large wall is by mounting your media to it. A flat-screen television larger than 50 inches is going to take up a good portion of your wall, and if you opt for a wall-mounted media unit, you can cover even more space and make it functional with shelving.
- One to try: Bayard Wall Unit. This entire unit is fully customizable to fit the specific size of your wall. The modular unit is crafted from wood and aluminum and is built to last. The center component can house a tv up to 55 inches, and the shelves can hold anything from books to movies to your favorite family heirlooms.
A wall-mounted media unit completely eliminates the headache of styling a large wall; it literally does the job for you.
Another super easy way to style a large, blank wall is by converting it to storage space. Much like the way a wall-mounted media unit provides full wall coverage and storage, a large bookcase can provide functional storage and style.
If the thought of a full-size bookcase conjures up images of heavily carved, dark wood, you might be tempted to say no thanks. Thankfully, you can retain your modern, contemporary look and preserve the minimalist beauty of your home with an open bookcase.
- One to try: The Beekman Bookcase. This bookcase is stunning and doubles as a work of art. Available in wood veneers or lacquers, this bookcase is large enough to fill a large, open wall and provides a large amount of space for books, sculptures, and anything else you’d love to showcase.
If you’re up for the challenge, a gallery wall is a great way to design a large wall with character and style. A gallery wall is a collection of themed pictures, collections, paintings, dishes, pressed flowers; virtually anything you can think of that you can hang on a wall.
A gallery wall must have order, or it can end up looking like total chaos. The best way to plan a gallery wall is to sketch out your plan on a piece of paper before hanging. This way, you can “test drive” the wall to see if you like it.
You can also map out the items you plan to hang on the floor and photograph them to see if they look cohesive and to make sure the design flows.
Mirrors are great for large spaces. A large mirror continues a space by reflecting the room and giving the illusion that the room is larger than it is. Mirrors also reflect natural light, keeping your space open, airy, and comfortable.
If you plan to use a mirror for your wall space, plan to hang one that allows for approximately 25”-31” of wall space on each side, or roughly a little over two feet.
Another option is to use a large, leaning mirror. A leaning mirror is one that rests against the wall and meets the floor. This is a perfect option for bedrooms that have large wall space, as it also provides a mirror for dressing.
- One to try: The Hackney Mirror. This mirror is larger than life and the perfect addition to a large wall space, especially in your bedroom or even a foyer. It’s extremely versatile, has a lightweight frame and design, making it easy to transfer from one space to the next.
The simplistic lines and stature give this mirror an understated look of elegance that can immediately make any space larger.
Sometimes you find yourself styling a wall that isn’t necessarily massive in size; it’s just a blank space where you find no adequate piece of furniture will do. For instance, a larger-sized wall in your foyer can be difficult to style as there’s no need for a television, and a bookcase would seem out of place.
For these spaces, a minimalist console table is the perfect solution. A simple console gives you a bit of height and structure, anchoring the area and creating a surface you can build with other elements.
Consoles, by nature, are long and slender, so you’ll be able to cover a larger portion of your wall than you would with a smaller table.
Once you’ve placed your console, you can add a smaller piece of art above it that would’ve looked too small without the table below it. You can add vases or sculptures to the console in varying heights depending on how much remaining wall space you have.
- One to try: The Beckenham Console. The perfect console does exist. Completely minimalistic, this sleekly designed console features ultra-thin panels and a narrow profile providing the perfect surface for building height.
The lacquered finish features a unique wood accent that gives this peace a natural, earthy feel.
What Not to Do
You can end up creating a disaster on a large wall if you aren’t careful. The key is to keep it simple, focus on function, clean lines, and a “less is more” mentality, even when creating a gallery wall. Here are a few large wall design mistakes to avoid.
- Don’t overdo it. Whether you’ve decided to dedicate your wall to family portraits or attempt a gallery wall, don’t overdo it. Look for several larger pieces that take up the majority of your decorative space and fill in the gaps with smaller hanging items.
Different sizes and shapes are a must. A wall full of 8X10 pictures will only look cluttered, and a massive collection of different shaped items will look chaotic.
- Don’t go dark on paint. It can be tempting to turn a large wall into an accent wall, and that’s not a bad idea. However, your paint color choice matters. If you select a paint color that’s incredibly dark, the entire room space will seem smaller and closed off.
Instead, opt for a light color, or choose a patterned painting style that allows you to use a dark color sparingly.
- When using one large item, make sure it fits. If you plan to use a television or a large piece of art on your wall, make sure it’s the proper size. A single painting or picture should fill about ⅔ to ¾ of your wall space.
A television will take up a smaller space, but be careful when you add decor around the tv as it can not only become distracting, it can take up more space than is needed. Even when working with a television, you should still aim for the ⅔ to ¾ rule with the tv and any additional decor filling that amount of space.
Large wall spaces are great opportunities to add storage, style, and design to your home. Instead of viewing them as a challenge, look at them as possibilities for showcasing your favorite pieces of art, opening the room with the addition of a mirror, or storing books and other items with large shelving units.
Modloft has the tools you need to create the perfectly designed wall space. When you’re feeling less than creative, visit our gallery to see inspiration and design from our community.
The Open Floor Plan: History, Pros and Cons What is an open floor plan house? | The Spruce
6 Steps to Creating an Inspiring Gallery Wall | The Spruce
How to Choose a Wall Mirror | Home Guides