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12 Brilliant Ways to Decorate a Blank Wall

A blank wall is like a blank canvas—it's filled with possibilities.

DIY framed scarves
Photography by: Aaron Dyer

Rework Your Wardrobe

Scarves may not be the easiest accessory to pull off, but as graphic visuals in the home, they're a no-brainer. Whatever style you love—Liberty prints; iconic Hermès designers; or retro, like these midcentury ones by Vera Neumann—simply frame and hang them individually or grouped by color or pattern (three behind a sofa looks nice). Then switch scarves with the seasons, or whenever you want to refresh your walls. Iron your scarves before framing them (use this handy frame kit), and leave a two-or three-inch border around them for an artful mat effect.

oversized quilt framed on wall
Photography by: Lennart Weibull

THE DETAILS: Thompson Street Studio Abstract Landscape quilt, $440, thompsonstreetstudio.com. Hans Wegner CH25 lounge chair, in Smoked Oak, $4,050, carlhansen.com. Wisteria Beijing vase, in Mushroom, $249, wisteria.com.

Hang Tight

You were an ace at tacking up posters back in college. But figuring out how to frame oversize finds so they're worthy of a whole wall in your home seems to require a Ph.D. in museum studies. Well Made Gallery Stiicks solve that problem (from $20 for a 9-inch set, wearewellmade.com). The magnetic wood strips are gentle enough to clasp that vintage Berber wedding blanket you snagged in Morocco, come in lengths up to 72 inches, and look so neutral, they won't detract from showpieces like this handmade quilt. Consider them shortcuts to an A+ in decorating. The top back wood strip screws directly into the wall (Above); the front one sticks firmly to it, gripping your textile (or print, or map) in between.

 

[BROWSE OUR: Homemade Blankets and Quilts]
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Photography by: Seth Smoot

Showcase Your Collection

Every detail matters in the grand scheme of your design. Similarly, a collection is only made impressive from the individual items you've curated. Your collections shouldn't be preserved in glass, left idle on the shelves, collecting dust. They deserve to be out on display proudly! Here, we forgo the standard all-mounted cabinet display and erect them on the wall directly. For a modern look that keeps them from looking too stale—mix, don't match. Keep within the colors of a loose palette and a symmetrical arrangement.

 

[MAKE: The Modern Plate Wall]
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We're hooked onto this idea. Here, a set of well-preserved fish plates is mounted against an oceanic backdrop of cool-colored tiles. They are grouped by color and streamlined into a cascading flow—just like a school of fish swimming in unison underwater. And while it certainly makes a statement, it fits naturally together into the nautical theme of the room overall.

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Embrace the Great Outdoors (Inside)

Why not take a decorative cue from Mother Nature? This textured wall mosaic is made from birch poles that are sliced into disks and glued to plywood panels. Longer pieces that are strategically placed can be used as hooks for bags and artwork.

 

[MAKE: The Birch Wall Panel]
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Looking for something brighter and sunnier? These household plants brighten up an unused wall space when prominently placed atop bright yellow brackets. This works best in a room that gets a lot of natural light.

 

[MAKE: The Indoor Flower Brackets]
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Get Help Around the House

Decor isn't simply decorative. It's functional too. In this office, the wall was transformed into a giant-size family planner using a coat of chalkboard paint. With this, you can see all of your commitments for weeks to come and tackle everything on your to-do list.

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Additionally, you'll never be late again with this stenciled clock. Center it so that it's unobstructed from a long-range view. Ours is modeled after the ornate face of an 18th-century case clock.

 

[MAKE: The Stenciled Clock Wall Decoration]
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Stay Connected to Friends and Family

What better way to make use of the walls in your home than to celebrate the loved ones who fill it? In this setting, a set of family photographs are unified with identical black frames. The arrangement trick further elongates the length of the wall: Mark a horizontal midline on the wall, and hang all of the pictures above or below it.

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Or take a more artistic approach! In this project, the family tree is reimaginged for a graphic display including a crisp silhouette of each member.

 

[MAKE: The Framed Silhouette Family Tree]
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Host a Home-Turned-Art-Gallery

A bright pop of color can turn a humdrum home into one with personality. Here, a rainbow of framed mats prominently display a set of black-and-white prints. They are centered symmetrically around a wall sconce, incorporating existing elements of the space into the enlivened design.

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Photography by: Seth Smoot

And if you have a few extra swatches of fabric, you can create a display in a matter of minutes. Here, wooden artist's panels (typically used to mount paintings) are wrapped in fabric. Play with different color palettes, textures, and prints to find a complimentary design.

 

[MAKE: The Textile Wall Art]

Feeling inspired? Watch how to paint a "birds of a feather" family tree on your wall: