Tapestries and low-hanging light fixtures direct attention to a tall wall.

Decorating a Large & Tall Wall

by Anya Deason

It helps to observe the dynamics of scale when decorating large and tall walls, utilizing architectural features, color, pattern and light sources to call attention to your room's crowning feature. Some rooms contain vertical architectural features that draw attention to a high wall, which can become a focal point with strategic use of color or pattern. Accessories will assist in maximizing the decorative potential of your tall wall, especially oversized wall decor or a gallery of smaller-size framed pieces. Low-hanging light fixtures provide another way to emphasize a wall's height.

1. Tall, Dark and Handsome

An accent color provides an easy way to enhance an oversized wall, and if the accent wall is painted in a darker version of the existing wall color, it promotes visual cohesion. If three walls are painted light greenish blue-gray, for example, a dark slate-gray accent wall coordinates, especially with bronze or orange-brown wood frames and orange-brown wood flooring. Orange is a color wheel opposite -- or complement -- of green-blue, providing contrast with the slate-gray wall. Consider a large, vertical framed mirror or painting, or a grouping of smaller ones, to draw attention upward.

2. Ivory Tower

Wallpaper provides a variant on the accent wall strategy, particularly if applied to a wall with built-in vertical elements such as tall windows or bookcases. In a room with ivory carpeting -- which blends with matching walls -- consider mint-green and ivory wallpaper on the accent wall. The wallpaper draws attention to the wall's height. If frequent kids' snack and beverage spills are a concern, you may prefer to use darker, stain-concealing colors or confine this strategy to a formal living room rather than high-traffic rooms.

3. Height Weight Proportional

Large tapestries and rugs provide a simple way to enhance large and tall walls. Hung from rods instead of heavy frames, tapestries command attention due to their vivid patterns and relatively large size. With kids running around your household, a tapestry offers a safer wall-decorating solution than large glass-fronted pictures or mirrors. In a rustic room, consider a tapestry with a palette of green-grays, cool yellows and orange-red, positioning it against a tall, textured yellow-ochre wall. Position tall furniture and accessories on adjacent walls to provide balance.

4. Down From on High

A kitchen requires serious lighting. Prominent light fixtures help to showcase a large and tall wall. Consider low-hanging chandeliers or dark pendant lights with large, decorative globes. Between beams in a kitchen with a high ceiling, opt for a dark bronze chandelier with a large, circular base and multiple candle cups. While vertical decor items direct attention upward to the ceiling's height, striking light fixtures that extend downward from the towering heights are equally effective.

About the Author

Based in Franklin, Tenn., Anya Deason has more than 15 years of decor-related experience, assisting leading interior designers and owning a custom frame shop. While working at Lyzon Gallery in 1999, she wrote descriptions of artwork for Sotheby's online auctions. Deason holds a Bachelor of Science from Tennessee Technological University.

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