• Hand-Painted Wall Pattern

    by  • January 14, 2014 • House Projects & Updates • 64 Comments

    I think it’s fun to experiment with bold colors or patterns in smaller spaces like hallways or powder rooms. It’s easier to get away with louder choices in these rooms that have less going on & less to compete with. I loved our deep charcoal gray hallway and it’s strong contrast against the crisp white trim at our last house.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I wanted to give our current hallway a similar bold look, but with pattern this time (and some of you caught a sneak peak in my studio post!). Yes, we are renters, but our landlords said we can paint the walls, as long as we paint them back to white before we leave. Right now it’s looking like we’ll be here a few years, so to me, it’s totally worth repainting down the road to still have fun with this house now and make it ours. After all, I’m pretty sure my soul would crumple up and die if I couldn’t tweak our home ๐Ÿ™‚
    Here’s how the hallway looked when we moved in –

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I started out by removing the door separating the hallway from the family room to open things up a bit, and then gave everything a fresh coat of white paint.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I had some ideas for a few different free-form, hand-painted patterns, but narrowed it down to these two. I painted them on two big pieces of paper and taped them up on the wall to picture how they would look floor-to-ceiling. I liked the diamonds, but I couldn’t get over the other pattern! The little lines/slashes/tick marks?

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I wasn’t sure what to call it, until I started painting on the wall, and then I DEFINITELY felt like a crazy woman making tick marks, counting…something creepy? My brother-in-law said it looked like I was tracking my days in Phil’s captivity, haha. But ANYWAYS, I grabbed a half-full quart of black paint and started by doing a row of tick marks the whole way around the hallway. I made the marks really quickly, and let the paint brush dry out a little bit before re-dipping.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    Then I started filling in below with more rows of slashes. I just eyeballed the placements because I liked the imperfection of the pattern.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters
    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    The only time that I thought about the spacing was once I got closer to the top. I mapped out 3 rows to the top of the door frames, and 3 rows from the door frames to the ceiling too so that I wouldn’t end up with one random squatty row at the top.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    And here she is all finished! It took me 3-4 hours all together, which I was surprised by actually, because I felt like I was flying down the rows. But I guess there are a lot of little brush strokes on these walls!

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I really like how it turned out, I think it’s fun to have a modern wallpaper look without any of the cons of wallpaper – and even without dealing with stencils! Phil likes it too, although he did call it “hipster,” which I took great offense to. Say it isn’t so!

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    The walls aren’t highly textured, but I do like how the texture is evident where the brush was more dry.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    This won’t happen for awhile, but I’m picturing a long, colorful runner down the middle. Maybe something vintage?

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I forgot to mention that I also gave a renter-friendly makeover to the light fixture. I unscrewed the glass globe, and then attached a paper lantern shade over top of the existing fixture with little eyehook screws. I’ve been doing this all over the house to the overhead lighting. I like that it gives a little more personality to a space in a way that’s very easily undone whenever it’s time to move.

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters
    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    I think it’s a fun little before-and-after! And I used paint that I already had on hand, so it doesn’t hurt that this look was free too ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    What do you think? Are you into patterned walls?

    Hand-Painted Wall Pattern | Beautiful Matters

    Related posts:

    64 Responses to Hand-Painted Wall Pattern

    1. January 14, 2014 at 5:41 pm

      This is so super cute!!

    2. kara
      January 14, 2014 at 8:30 pm

      I love it!! very cool looking! did you alternate the brush strokes from top to bottom/ bottom to top? wonder what the lamp shade would look like with a spiral paint strip.. thx for sharing cool ideas!!!

    3. Julie
      January 15, 2014 at 12:13 pm

      How fun! I love going bold in smaller spaces – my husband is so afraid of color and pattern it’s ridiculous. Our powder room went a bold, deep teal, and I’m planning a few things for spring that he’s probably going to freak out over, then love.

      • January 30, 2014 at 12:32 pm

        Phil is the same way. I can’t tell him what I have planned, or else he’ll freak out too. But if I just go ahead and make the change, he actually likes it! THe deep teal powder room sounds pretty!

    4. Aunt Robin
      January 15, 2014 at 3:07 pm

      Love the pattern AND the fact that you don’t have to measure anything! How do you think it would look on wood paneling?

      • January 30, 2014 at 12:30 pm

        Thanks! Hmm, I’m not sure how that would look on a texture like wood paneling. I would definitely give it a try…you can always paint over it if it doesn’t look right!

    5. January 15, 2014 at 8:15 pm

      Fantastic Shauna! I love how it looks as a whole. Takes a lot of guts to do such a bold pattern. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • January 30, 2014 at 12:33 pm

        Thanks! I figured I should just give it a shot…worst case scenario would involve repainting. I can handle that!

    6. January 18, 2014 at 1:42 am

      What a unique look!! I’ve been thinking of doing a bold pattern in my guest bath, and this is so inspiring ๐Ÿ™‚

    7. Cathy
      January 28, 2014 at 10:33 am

      OK — trying to get used to this — not really into patterns! BUT — it IS interesting for sure! A bold solid-color runner would look great — bright blue or red? And since I’m into family pictures or art work on the walls — how would that look on that pattern? Just asking. I really like what you are doing with the house and am thrilled that you guys are happy there!

      • January 30, 2014 at 12:46 pm

        I probably won’t be putting pictures up on the wall here, but I think it would totally work if the pictures/art were larger in scale, rather than a bunch of smaller ones. Or if the wall pattern was less of a contrast (like light gray marks instead of black, for example). I think either of those options would work!

    8. January 28, 2014 at 12:24 pm

      wow, that’s awesome. seems like a lot of work, and that captivity comment was too funny. found you from Mandy’s party.

    9. Candy
      January 28, 2014 at 2:55 pm

      Fantabulous look and idea. Here from Vintage Revivals. When I saw the thumbnail I thought it was a black wall with words repeatedly written in script. This is way more unique!

    10. Liz
      January 28, 2014 at 2:59 pm

      Wow this is great!! You are brave : ) and it paid off. It adds so much interest to a “boring” hallway. A vintage runner would look amazing here!

    11. January 28, 2014 at 4:01 pm

      Love it! Such great impact!

    12. January 28, 2014 at 4:06 pm

      I love it! I actually clicked over here from the linkup party because I just had to get a closer look. I love that it was free and you don’t see it all over the place…its all yours. Great job!

    13. January 28, 2014 at 5:02 pm

      Totally in love with this! Coming over from the link-up at VR. Great job!

    14. January 28, 2014 at 6:11 pm

      Fantastic!! I love your new walls! What a difference it makes — great job!

    15. January 28, 2014 at 6:50 pm

      This is a really fun solution! I have a long boring hallway that I just can’t decide how to transform, this is really inspiring!

    16. January 28, 2014 at 10:48 pm

      Love this! The imperfection really makes it look amazing! Worth the 3-4 hours fo’ sho.

    17. Sandy
      January 28, 2014 at 11:14 pm

      I love this! Came over from Vintage Revivals and so glad I did. Great job.

    18. January 28, 2014 at 11:29 pm

      Very cool!

    19. February 1, 2014 at 3:01 am

      I LOVE this!!! Love, love, love. I have drawn on my walls with Sharpie Paint Pens before, but I love the way you can see the brush strokes here. Oh my. Love the idea of a colorful vintage runner.

    20. February 1, 2014 at 12:29 pm

      Amazing. Great job. The color, the dry brush, the texture, the balls it took to do this, all of it, LOVE. Love!

    21. March 10, 2014 at 4:30 pm

      Shauna- This is totally the shit!! I’m excited to have a place that is really ‘ours’ (even if we are renting) in the next couple of years so that I can try more time consuming/ semi-permanent projects like this!! I love your site, it’s an extension of you- so inspiring!

      Oh, and by the way.. the term “hipster” is completely relative to where you are geographically and where you grew up. Also, speaking from someone who lives in a hipster city (New Haven is brooklyn’s little sister) there are good hipsters and bad hipsters… and if in fact (shutter! ๐Ÿ˜‰ you are a hipster from time to time… then you are one of the good ones!! <3

    22. Pingback: Dining/Living Room Plans | Beautiful Matters

    23. June 3, 2014 at 10:51 am

      Shauna, I love what you did with both hallways. Very striking. Nice job, thanks for sharing!

    24. August 11, 2014 at 9:07 am

      They’re fun! We have permission to paint in our rental as well, but I can’t stand the thought of putting in that work and then putting in more work to paint over it in a year or two.

    25. August 11, 2014 at 9:13 am

      Holy smokes! That looks amazing! I actually love both patterns. Bravo!!!

    26. August 11, 2014 at 9:48 am

      Unbelievable. This is inspiring!

    27. Yessica
      August 11, 2014 at 10:46 am

      Oh pelase do let me know more about your paper shades! Where can we find such, and what type of screws? I’m a newbie so those words sounded eerie a bit.

      I love the overall look but the subtle idea of the paper shade won me over!!


      • August 19, 2014 at 10:18 pm

        They’re just simple paper lanterns! I’ve had a bunch now for a few years, some are from IKEA and some are from Pottery Barn Kids so I forget exactly where this one is from. They’re super cheap though! And I just screwed in a few tiny white eyehook screws (you can find them in the hardware section at Lowe’s/Home Depot, and I bet at Wal-mart too) and rested the top metal rim of the lantern on those screws.

    28. August 11, 2014 at 11:23 am

      LOVE! I am so stealing this for my bathroom. In all the years I rented I also used to switch out all glass ceiling globes and place a paper shade over – quick, cheap and looks cool!

    29. Jess
      August 11, 2014 at 12:21 pm

      Inspiring! Ni have a bland hallway that needs texture

    30. August 11, 2014 at 3:00 pm

      this is awesome! i love the overall look of it and the ingenuity!

    31. August 12, 2014 at 2:20 pm

      Fantastic! Yay, you! I hope you feel happy every day, walking around the corner and seeing your handiwork. Amazing job. ๐Ÿ™‚

    32. Henri M.
      August 15, 2014 at 6:53 pm

      Looks like you are walking into a giant piece of newsprint.So unique.

    33. August 16, 2014 at 7:45 pm

      This looks absolutely incredible! I spotted this on Apartment Therapy, now, I’m going to stick around to see the rest of your blog! xx

    34. Debora
      August 18, 2014 at 2:44 pm

      Oooo …I’m thinking a purply shade of radiant orchid for a feature wall in the dining room. Much cooler than a solid block of color.

    35. Sukina Johnson
      August 19, 2014 at 9:52 pm

      Where did you get the paper lantern for the hall light? I love this idea and I really like the pattern. We have a dated globe in our hallway and it needs sprucing.

      • August 19, 2014 at 10:26 pm

        I don’t remember, actually! I’ve had it for years. It’s either from IKEA or Pottery Barn Kids, I believe. Thanks, though! It’s definitely a great, very inexpensive option for updating an old light fixture (as long as the bulb is far enough away from the paper shade, of course!)

    36. Pingback: The Sunday Currently, Now “This Week’s Links” | 702 Park Project

    37. August 25, 2014 at 6:35 am

      yep, beautiful matters. you made it matter even more beautiful with your touch!
      love it.

    38. August 26, 2014 at 10:04 am

      This is so cool! Totally unexpected and working beautifully! What an inspiration.

    39. Pingback: Help me make a closet look cool | Virginia Roberts

    40. Pingback: 12 Ways and Tutorial For Doing Amazing Home Painting | APEXRBO.COM

    41. Ebuka Uche
      February 21, 2015 at 4:11 pm

      Great work.

    42. September 27, 2015 at 1:04 pm

      love this! considering as an accent wall in my livingroom. what kind of brush / size brush did you use?

      • September 28, 2015 at 6:59 pm

        I don’t remember exactly, but it was a small craft brush (the kind that’s squared off, not the rounded/tapered ones), about 1/2″ wide I’m guessing?

        • Karina
          August 21, 2016 at 11:45 am

          Personally i find it awful to look at ..
          To me my home is my sanctuary.. Not schizophrenic like this feels , to me

    43. Pingback: Before &amp; After: Newly Painted Hallway is a Stroke of Genius

    44. Pingback: Before & After: Newly Painted Hallway is a Stroke of Genius – Sofia Consola

    45. Pingback: Before & After: Newly Painted Hallway is a Stroke of Genius - Tmarie Linens

    46. August 21, 2016 at 9:34 am

      I se this is an old post recycled by AP, but have to say that I love it and am very impressed by the almost uniformity of it – so very clever. Make the hallway looks so much wider too. So love it.

    47. Pam
      August 21, 2016 at 10:11 am

      I really like the black and white, the actual black marks are awesome in their “hand-painted”,look. Very SMART design. Yes I hollered just a little. One thing I would keep in mind is the floor is the perfect color and texture to keep the hallway from looking too modern, unless that is your goal. I’m looking forward to your future ideas.

    48. Arlene
      August 21, 2016 at 10:36 am

      Looks fantastic!

    49. Arlene
      August 21, 2016 at 10:39 am

      How do you think this idea would look with a very dark, almost black floor?

      • May 2, 2017 at 12:52 pm

        Hm, that’s hard to picture! Maybe if you used a lighter color for the brushstrokes so the dark tones aren’t overwhelming?

    50. August 22, 2016 at 4:54 am

      By making light beige, will add “thatch texture” to my living room accent wall to carry out my beach themed motif. Will match my patio palapa patio umbrella very nicely.

      Thanks for the inspiration!

    51. Mary
      August 23, 2016 at 10:56 pm

      Wow Shauna, that’s gutsy but looks super nice and very modern. I don’t think I can paint so straight, so would you mind coming over to my place to do my hallway the same way?

    52. Pingback: DIY Graphic Brushstrokes Hand Painted Wallpaper - Lemon Thistle

    53. Rae
      November 15, 2017 at 8:47 pm

      This looks fantastic! I was hoping to come across some cool inspiration for hand-painted walls and I hit the jackpot here. Thanks so much for the inspiration… even 3 years later! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Leave a Reply