Do you remember your childhood room?
The walls plastered with posters of your favorite singers, books, or movies. Sprinkled with photos of friends and family or homemade art we created ourselves.
Whatever found its way on to your room walls was something that you enjoyed seeing every day. Something that you felt (whether you realized it then or not) represented a part of you who are. Do you remember that nostalgic feeling of excitement whenever you had something new to hang on your wall? Choosing wall decor for your home should feel the same. It should be exciting and enjoyable. Not daunting and difficult.
Think of the walls of your home as a blank canvas. Holding an opportunity to create a unique setting that best displays you and your family’s personality and style. Wall decorations can help convey the narrative of your home, who you are, and what is important to you. Therefore, when choosing wall décor, putting in a little thought and consideration will allow you to cover your walls with things that best tell your story.
In this post we go over the main aspects of wall décor, in hopes to alleviate some of the stress of choosing wall decorations for your home. We hope that with the help of this guide you can cover your walls in a way that best articulates your personality and meets your decorative design goals.
Steps to choosing wall décor for your home:
Assessing wall location
Determining your style
Choosing wall décor items
Also, to keep in mind;
The Different types of wall décor ideas
o Wall Art – art vs. photography
o Wall Mirrors
o Wall hangings
o Decorative objects
The Elements of Choosing Wall Décor for a Space
Before we dive into the different wall décor ideas and concepts, we thought it might be helpful to outline the process of choosing wall decorations for a space first. Taking the time to evaluate the room, with these aspects in mind, will aid in your search for wall décor that best suits your personality and space.
The steps to choosing wall decorations that fit both your lifestyle and space are; assessing wall location and area, determining your style, planning, and choosing decorative wall items.
Assessing Wall Location:
before choosing any items for wall decorations it is best to assess the overall elements and functions of the room. Are you choosing décor for your bathroom or trying to fill empty space in your entryway or living room? This is important because the room in which the wall you are trying to decorate resides in, plays a role in the different types of wall décor you may choose for the area.
When choosing wall décor for your bathroom it is best to look for wall decorations that can withstand high humidity and moisture. If decorating a wall in a highly trafficked area, try incorporating wall décor that has functionable properties. Like wall organizers, shelving, or wall hooks. Utilizing items that serve a purpose can help support daily activities on top of taking up wall space. These often work well in entryways, laundry rooms, or bedrooms.
Determining the goals of a space can help guide decisions to construct an area that is not only stylish but productive.
Determining Décor Styles:
Deciding on a décor style is another important step in choosing wall décor for a space. Narrowing down a single style or theme you are trying to achieve, will help you know what to look for when out shopping or browsing online. For rustic styles incorporate pieces that feel timeworn, like they themselves have a story to tell; like weathered tapestries, or reclaimed wooden pieces, like this round beveled edge mirror. Leaning towards a more modern aesthetic? Choose items that have metal and straighter characteristics. If falling somewhere in between or wanting a more down to earth vibe, incorporate mixed material items, like this metal and wood clock or this metal and leather wall hook board. Co op
Planning & Choosing Wall Décor:
For these last steps in the process, we decided to lump these two together because they can often overlap. We highly recommend PLANNING out your wall décor design before making purchases. To start, measure the overall area of wall space you are trying to decorate. This gives you a scale to go from when choosing items to fit in the given area. From here, try to find pieces that best suit the goals for the space and your style, be sure to note the measurements of individual items. Websites normally have sizing details in the product descriptions and don’t ever feel embarrassed, whipping out your handy tape measure in a store to take your own measurements. Doing this will help you organize your wall décor in a manner that is balanced and cohesive.
After having measured the wall space, and a couple of staple items you want to include in your wall décor, map out your design. This can be done by creating a scaled drawing or using painters’ tape on the wall to lay out items. Using painters’ tape can help create a better visual of how certain wall decorations will size up against other design elements and the overall room. If your room already has a lot going on use larger wall décor pieces, for the presence of many smaller items in one area can create a sense of clutter.
We also recommend not spending loads of money on wall décor and wall art. Unless professional art is your thing, do not feel as though you need to break the bank to find stylish wall decorations.
Nowadays, thanks to technology, there are a myriad of options and avenues to find wall décor that is unique and affordable. Places like Minted offer a variety of different style art and photography to choose from. Find a piece you like? You can choose from several sizes and frames and have a unique wall décor piece shipped right to your door matted, framed and ready to go! Minted is one of our go to places when searching for wall art and photography.
When choosing wall décor try to not only choose items that elevate your decorative style but also depict your own personality. Find things that speak to YOU, your walls are a blank canvas to be utilized to create the narrative of your home. So, try to use this as a guide and less like a rubric when choosing wall decorations.
Considerations When Hanging Wall Décor
When hanging and choosing wall décor there are no rules as to what can and cannot be used as wall decoration. With that said, consider the other design elements of the space when deciding what to hang and where. Think of the larger anchoring items of a design. Like a sofa or fireplace in a living room, or a long console table or bench in the entryway. When hanging decor over these kind objects, a general rule of thumb is to use wall decor that is 2/3 the width of the object.
We mentioned previously to use larger wall decorations if your room is already busy. Choosing wall art that is proportional to your room helps create unity and aesthetic. Too large of items and the space can feel too overwhelming, whereas too small of items can appear awkward and random. Smaller wall décor pieces tend to be more appealing when displayed in a cluster with other like or coordinating items.
I am sure by now you have heard to hang wall décor at eye level. A good way to find this point is to measure around 57 to 58 inches from the center of your décor piece down. The center of your wall decoration should be 57-58 inches above the ground. Another way to do this (the way we generally end up hanging our wall décor haha) is just simply going with your gut. This may come easier to more seasoned decorators, but if you are confident in your placement and it looks rightly placed to you then go with your gut. Just make sure that your wall décor hits at a comfortable eye level that pleases the room and other surrounding décor.
Looking Vs. Seeing Wall Décor
Visual art helps communicate things that can sometimes be difficult to articulate verbally. Wall décor can communicate meanings that go much further than an ordinary exchange. Artists use an entire range of thought, feeling, and observation to create pieces. In a way, choosing from different wall décor ideas is sort of like creating a piece of art in your home. The wall decorations that cover your walls can bring to life a narrative that reflects a range of different thoughts, feelings, and observations.
Looking and seeing are common verbs associated with art and wall décor. These verbs indicate varying degrees of visual awareness (Frank, PG 13). Looking is more habitual and refers to taking in what is in front of us in a more mechanical or goal-oriented way. Like seeing a doorknob and only needing to glance quickly in order to turn it. When we “look” at things we are more so focusing on function. Seeing is a more focused, receptive version of looking. In seeing, we look with memories, imagination, and more feelings attached (Frank, PG 13). When choosing wall décor, we can either choose options that ourselves and guests merely “look” at or we can incorporate wall decorations that will be SEEN. Putting in the extra effort to find wall decorations that hold more value and meaning within them, creates a setting that is alluring and captivating – elevating the whole space entirely.
This does not mean that you must buy $1,000+ home décor to achieve a well-designed and attractive space. This simply means putting in a little more thought to what wall décor ideas you decide to incorporate in your area. Choosing items that YOU feel hold more feeling and characteristics, and that can be SEEN instead of simply looked at and passed by.
There are endless possibilities to what wall décor ideas you can use within your space. After evaluating your area and determining the key design aspects of the space, the fun part of finally choosing what decorations to hang is on the horizon. Before we get into some of our favorite wall décor ideas,
remember that the overall design of a project generally includes; a pleasant or inspiring subject, thoughtful execution, and a harmonious balance of sizing and colors within a pleasing arrangement.
Different types of Wall Décor Ideas
Long gone are the days when you only hung fine art and family photos on the walls of your home. There are no rules when it comes to choosing items to place on your walls. Again, decorating the walls of your home should be fun and reflective of who you are. So, when choosing wall décor, have an open mind and do not put too much stress on trying to satisfy formal design trends or “rules”. In fact, hanging different types of décor on your walls can help add character and depth to a space. As well as change the whole mood of a room entirely.
Some of our favorite wall décor ideas are;
Wall Décor Hangings
Wall clocks are a tried-and-true wall décor item. Not only can they help keep us on time, but with the myriad of different shapes, sizes, and styles they come in nowadays they can also be utilized as stylish home décor.
When choosing a wall clock, we prefer to go with a larger oversized clock. This is because sometimes hanging too small of an item unless apart of a larger contemplation, can appear misplaced and awkward. A large wall clock can be used as either a focal point, complementary piece, or a part of a group of decorations. If looking for rustic styled pieces; look for clocks that are primarily wooden and appear weathered, like this Homestead 30in clock. Darker toned textured materials tend to offer a more rustic appearance.
When searching for a more modern styled clock, focus more on clocks that have more metal or iron features, with straight edging, and more defined blunt numbering or text. Abstract clocks with out numbering or simply lines generally fit best in more modern spaces. If your style falls somewhere in between, or you want to add more character with your wall clock, look for clocks with mixed materials like this Beaded Edge Wooden & Metal Wall Clock. The extra detail around the edging captures the eye and offers more of an artistic touch, while the metal and wood help had a variance of texture.
Wall clocks are a great décor item that can be used to take up a large amount of space. Especially if you have a big wall you are trying to figure out how to fill. They can help save other wall décor pieces for other areas of your home and provide eye-catching interest to a room.
When choosing wall clocks as wall décor you can:
use them in entryways hung above an entryway table
anchor a sofa in the family room
emphasize the focal point of a fireplace mantle
add function to a gallery wall
create a center piece for dining room décor
add a vintage cozy feel to a more modern landscape
help you & Others keep time in the kitchen or other high trafficked areas
help tie together and add character to a large open space, like the living room.
As you can see, a wall clock as wall décor has much more to offer than simply providing a means to tell time. Browse our spring 2021 collection of wall clocks here or click the tab in the list at the top of this page!
Decorative Wall Mirrors
Mirrors are another staple wall décor idea that has been around for a while. Although it was not until recently that we began to see them more often in spaces. Mirrors can be round, narrow, straight, rectangle, large, small, and everything in between. So, like wall clocks, the many different options ensure you are bound to find a mirror that fits well with your wall décor ideas and design vision.
Mirrors can make a smaller space feel larger, reflect light, and highlight/accentuate other design elements of a room.
A couple things to consider when choosing a mirror for wall décor are; placement, size, and reflection.
The size of the mirror is important because just like wall clocks it can be used as a focal point, complimentary piece, or anchoring piece. A great way to make a room feel larger is by adding a larger floor mirror propped against one wall. The mirror will draw the appearance of the floor and walls and make the room feel larger than it is. Plus, a mirror on the floor leaning against a wall, creates a sense of laid-back interest that welcomes guests and makes your space feel more inviting.
Size also needs to be proportional to surrounding design elements. If using as a focal point, be sure to not off balance one wall, leaving one side of the room feeling heavy. If complimenting other home décor items, make sure the mirror does not overshadow or visually outweigh other elements. When using as an anchoring piece a good rule of thumb, as mentioned, is to make sure the piece is no more or no less than 2/3 the width of the piece it is anchoring. This helps emphasis both items without drawing too much attention to one over the other.
Placement is especially important to consider when incorporating a wall décor mirror into your space. Placing a mirror in just the right spot can make any space feel bigger and brighter. Mirrors create depth and help smaller areas not feel as crowded and overwhelming. Placing a mirror directly in front of or opposite of a window allows the wall mirror to reflect the natural light from the window throughout the entire room. Placing mirrors in areas that gather a lot of natural light is a great tip to help brighten a space, doing so can creates a cozier airy vibe. As opposed to wall art and photography, mirrors do not have to be hung directly at eye level. Consider the measurements of the mirror and other surrounding design elements to choose the best place to hang a wall mirror.
Reflection is important because it can add greater emphasis to already existing home décor elements. Hanging a mirror across from a framed art or photograph creates another opportunity for the piece to be experienced and enjoyed. This also allows for a pleasant back drop when guests or you are looking in the mirror. Because just the same as hanging a wall mirror across from a décor item you enjoy, hanging one across from something unattractive can make the entire room design become unappealing. So when hanging a decorative wall mirror try to also take into account what will be hung across from it, to generate even more style in your space.
Shelving Wall Décor Ideas
Shelving is a great functionable wall décor idea, making it one of our favorites to hang in areas that support activities or serve a purpose. These rooms are areas like a bedroom, bathroom, entryway, office, etc. Incorporating shelfs into your space adds functionality and can help a room be more productive in supporting your lifestyle. You can use shelfs to house most used items, allowing for them to be displayed in view and easy to grab in a haste. Not only is this functionable, but shelving can also provide opportunities to incorporate more items that uplift the spaces overall decorative theme. You can add in objects and items that coincide with your vision while also adding a more personal touch.
When placing items on shelving try to gravitate toward odd numbers of grouping, as this is more appealing to the eye than that of evenly grouped items. If you do not want to collect items or worry the space will seem crowded using large pieces is a go to option to help decrease clutter and take up bigger areas of wall.
For more tips on balancing your shelf and wall décor go here to the balancing section of our how to decorate an entryway blog!
Gallery walls are one of the best ways to make a space feel more personal. Gallery walls provide the decorator with a chance to let their creativity and own personality shine through their home décor. A gallery wall can be a contemplation of family photos, favorite pieces of art collected over the years, or it can be photos, art, and decorative objects all mixed together. There are no definitive rules for creating a gallery wall and I think that is what makes them such a fun decorating project in itself.
When collecting items to use in your gallery wall, be it family photos or random wall hangings, try to keep a sense of cohesiveness throughout each piece. This can be accomplished by choosing pieces that are generally of the same style or follow the same color palette. Be sure to mimic these variations, a minimum of twice for each different style or color.
Also, to keep in mind as with any design project, make sure the overall appearance of the gallery wall feels balanced both visually and decoratively.
For a more modern look keep things in straight lines, hanging things in a grid like manner with an even numbered of pieces. Or if you are trying to add more interest and detail, arrange things in a less structured way varying sizes of objects, but still stepping back to include balance and cohesiveness.
We are working on a blog post to gather the best tips and advice to help you make a statement with a new gallery wall in your space! Subscribe to our email list to receive notifications on new blog posts and products!
So, this is sort of an umbrella term for a range of different wall décor ideas. But it leans more towards décor items that are hung by a string or something similar on the wall, hence the term “wall hanging”. This can be anything from a decorative wooden spoon hung by a leather strap in the kitchen or a beautiful handmade macramé yarn tapestry in the living room. Wall hangings are another opportunity to intertwine your personality into your home décor. These like gallery walls can be personal items, or they can be more decorative style matching items. Again, there are no definitive rules to choosing wall décor, its ultimately whatever makes you feel happy in the space you are in.
When hanging and choosing wall hangings try to keep in mind the tips, we mentioned in choosing gallery wall décor. Keeping the surrounding elements of the room and wall space in mind will help you choose items that are visually appealing as well as practical. Wall hangings, I feel, are more personal than other wall décor items, because these items often give off a handcrafted aesthetic offering a more thought-provoking setting. The wall décor pieces
create a story of its own with feeling as though they have an interesting history attached to them.
A few ideas of wall hangings we like to incorporate into our wall décor are;
Hanging pieces of reclaimed wood with jute rope
Hanging pottery planters, like these terracotta basket planters
Yarn & String Art, there are a ton of beautiful handmade options on Etsy
Decorative Objects – this category we felt deserved its own section, so we go into more detail below!
Handwoven Wall Décor – like natural woven medallions or flattened baskets
Decorative objects as wall décor are becoming more and more popular and seen in many more wall décor displays. Decorative objects are exactly how it sounds, objects that you have chosen or bought to utilize as part of your wall décor display. These items could also be considered wall hangings, but we felt that the term wall hanging tends to be more often associated with strung décor items.
Decorative objects fit well with any design and can provide more interest and personality to a room. Instead of the hum-dum wall décor ideas of framed art and photography decorative objects can be exciting and alluring allowing a room to make more of an impact on experiences. These can be anything from sculptures, decorative wall cabinets, crafted wooden art, cutout metal art, crosses, decorative signs, the possibilities are endless. Think of a restaurant you have been to and every square inch of wall space is decorated with a random object. This is not the approach to take when decorating with found objects in your home. Placement is key to arranging decorative objects for wall decor in a way that does not look sloppy or awkward.
We recommend choosing a couple of pieces that you just absolutely love and incorporating them into your wall décor, with a mix of other wall décor ideas we’ve mentioned. Doing so makes sure you don’t over crowd a space with too many objects, which can make a space feel tight and constricting.
Wall hooks are a wall décor staple for areas that serve purposes like the entryway, laundry room, bathroom, and even bedrooms. Hanging wall hooks provide a functionable option for wall décor and can be used in any space. We like to use wall hooks or hook boards too hang items we need to grab in a hurry or things that we use every day. We hung a wall hook board in our laundry room, and it holds our dogs leashes, car keys, purses, back packs, coats, scarves, soccer cleats and more!
This is probably one of the most practical and productive pieces of wall décor you can utilize for a space. You can use wall hooks as another supporting element to other decorative pieces, by hanging more décor, or you can use this home organization tool for its true purpose and hang personal items like we suggested previously. They are a great wall décor idea for small spaces, as they can provide a place or other home décor or personal items, helping keep the space organized and less cluttered.
Wall hooks also come in an array of shapes, sizes, colors, and materials, and if chosen appropriately can become a statement piece in themselves. For modern styles look for concrete with dark accents and geometric designs. For rustic styled lean more towards mixed material hooks, like wooden and iron, with a more worn aesthetic to them. Wall hooks can work well with any style and offer further design opportunities, while helping keep a space organized and useful.
Wall Art & Photography
When you start to think of wall décor your mind naturally goes towards art and framed photographs. These have been go to wall décor items for quite some time now. Remember going to your grandparent’s house, and admiring the one wall filled, corner to corner with family photos? OR the random pieces of abstract art scattered around the home in awkward hallways? As said before, long gone are the days where your only wall décor choices are forced family photographs or art you don’t even actually like.
With that being said, DO NOT discredit these two veteran wall décor ideas. They have stood the test of time for a reason. Art creates a whimsical aura of story telling and meaning. Works of art are a visual expression of an idea or experience, formed with skill, using various different mediums (Frank, PG 3). These pieces do not need to be understood but instead enjoyed and experienced.
Choosing wall art for your home is another way to show off your personality and creative eye. When choosing art pieces start with deciding what type of vibe you want to portray within your space. If it is a moody, relaxed calmness then gravitates towards wall art that has shades of blue, green, and other earthy hues. If you are wanting a more uplifted, stimulating atmosphere, choose pieces that contain brighter warmer colors like yellows and oranges. As the bright colors are electrifying but toned down with the warmer hue choice, creating a lifted experience without feeling too overwhelming.
Photographs allow us to extend the life of memories once experienced, allowing us to revisit and remember past feelings and occurrences. They can be a vehicle for personal expression and symbolic communication. Helping people to see, feel, and remember in a way they did not know they could. Photos allow another opportunity to capture and interpret the world around us in a more senseful impactful manner. Therefore, choosing to incorporate photographs into your wall décor is a great way to make a space more dynamic and impressionable.
Photos are a timeless wall décor idea and can make a space feel more personal. So, when choosing what photos to use within your wall décor should be based on personal preference. Just like with art, establishing the style or ambience for a room is a good place to start from. From here you will be able to look at photographs and more easily understand if they fit in with your design theme or not. Rustic aesthetics flock more towards animals or vintage landscapes, while more modern themes entertain architectures and geometrically pleasing photographs.
Regardless of style, photography is a great wall décor idea for any space. It gives you a chance to show elements and aspects that are important to you while creating a space that leaves a lasting impression.
Minted is a great place to find both art and photography wall décor ideas. They offer an array of styles, themes, and sizes. You can choose a decorative frame, and custom size and have your new wall décor shipped directly to you. They offer quality prints for an affordable price.
There are endless wall décor ideas to choose from, the ones we’ve mentioned here are simply ideas we have seen work well in other spaces and used through out decades. There are no rules to choosing what to decorate your walls with, this should be an exciting endeavor not a stressful one.
We hope that after reading this post you have more confidence tackling that empty wall space in your home and can create an area that best tells you your family’s story.
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Frank, P. (2013) Artforms: Introduction to The Visual Arts. 11th Ed, PG 1-75. Pearson Education. Upper Saddle River, NJ.