Bedrooms are most often described as safe havens where you go to relax, but if you’re finding that your totally neutral room is no longer sparking joy, an accent wall is a great first foray into something different. They can be as simple or as complex as your heart desires, from just one painted wall to a full-on set of built-ins around the bed. We’ve gathered 16 of our favorite bedroom accent wall ideas you’ll want to save for the next time, for the minimalists and all-out DIYers alike. 

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Install Picture Frame Molding

Chelsey Brown of CityChicDecor

There’s a reason pre-war buildings are so sought after. All the intricate moldings and carefully-laid wood floors are hard to come by (especially in good condition), so many DIYers, like Chelsey Brown of @citychicdecor, have taken this into their own hands by installing picture frame molding in their homes. You can certainly do it the traditional way by cutting and nailing wood trim pieces to the walls, but you can also buy rental-friendly molding that’s just peel-and-stick. 

Frame Some Wallpaper Murals

Madeline Scalzi of TulipsForTheTable

If you’re lucky enough to live in a place with picture frame molding already (or you want to add a little life to your DIY version), take a page from Madeline Scalzi’s New York bedroom. She added a black and white mural into the frames behind her bed, which does double duty by mimicking the look of art and creating a focal wall in the bedroom.

Add Vertical Trim

Carly Fuller of MyCityApartment

If DIY picture frame molding seems too daunting, a similar (but simpler) project is to install vertical trim along the wall behind your bed, like Carly Fuller did in her Manhattan bedroom. This can be a rental-friendly option as well, if you use peel-and-stick strips or tiny nails to hold them up.

Paint an Accent Wall a Soft Pink Hue

Erika Ver of PeonyandHoney

Making the case for dusty pink bedrooms is this guest room designed by Erika Ver of @peonyandhoney. Not only did she install DIY molding, but she swathed the entire room in a complex, earthy pink that feels pretty much like a hug for overnight guests. Before you take the full leap into pink, you can experiment with just one wall or door first. 

Put Up Some Board and Batten

Drew Michael Scott of LoneFoxHome

Board and batten is a classic addition to any space, but particularly in ones that don’t have much going on architecturally. Drew Michael Scott of @lonefoxhome built out this board and batten wall behind the bed in his LA apartment, which both frames the bed and makes the space feel altogether more intentional. He’s painted it different colors as well — an easy update to make without removing all the hard work and trim.

Install a Few Built-Ins

Emily Sermons of ShoeBoxDesigns

If you’re short on storage (or just overflowing with knick knacks), utlizing the wall around your bedframe is a smart way to maximize your square footage. Emily Sermons, of @shoeboxdesigns, framed her bed out with classic white built-ins, adding a splash of green behind the headboard to call attention to the star of the show. The built-ins can be open or closed storage, and can act as a nightstand for either side of the bed as well. 

Go for Half-and-Half

Caroline Mullen, @caroline_mmullen

There’s absolutely no rule that says you can’t just paint part of your accent wall. In fact, it actually gives a faux board and batten effect, making the ceilings look taller and giving the space the illusion of architectural interest. 

Incorporate Grasscloth for Texture

Melissa Cacioppo, Designer: Shamika Lynch of MaximizingTiny

Vinyl peel-and-stick wallpaper is a great option for renters or frequent redecorators, but the timeless texture of grasscloth wallpaper is a decidedly more luxe touch for a bedroom. Shamika Lynch instantly upgraded her client’s bedroom with this wallpaper, providing just the right amount of visual interest while still being a neutral backdrop.

Set Up a Decorative Mantel and Mirror

Allie Provost, Designer: Sarah Lyon

Not every accent wall needs to be behind the bed, and not every one needs to involve paint. Take Sarah Lyon’s Upper East Side apartment, for example. She brought in a marble mantel to fake some architectural interest in an otherwise plain bedroom, and the vintage mirror on top adds even more drama. 

Highlight the Architecture

 Jessie Ruane of JessieFinds

Stumped on how to make a triangular wall work? Instead of working against the shape, try leaning into it, like Jessie Ruane did in her Upstate NY home. Curtains flank the large windows to soften and heighten the space, and a custom headboard behind the bed ties perfectly in with the terracotta paint color she chose for the back wall. 

Limewash a Wall

Drew Michael Scott of LoneFoxHome

For a touch of old Europe anywhere, limewash paint is a highly textured wall finish that mimics the look of well-worn walls in classic Parisian, Italian, and other European buildings. To create a Parisian ambience in his roommate’s room, Drew Michael Scott layered gray limewash onto intricate moldings, creating a transportive space in a standard rental bedroom. Pick one wall to try out this trend.

Color Block Your Wall

Creativa Studio/Getty Images

Create the illusion of an oversized headboard by painting the wall behind your bed, painting a strip wider than your bed, leaving two swaths unpainted (or even painting them a different color).

Go Moody

Behr’s 2017 Paint Color Trends.

Even small bedrooms can look good with a moody, dark shade. Use it to create interest on an accent wall, especially if there’s already some architectural details to add depth and charm.

Sandwich a Lighter Color


Painting your trim, ceiling, and the lower third of your bedroom wall a darker color, while leaving the top two thirds of the wall a softer shade will create a fun sandwich of color behind your bed.

Leave That Wood Alone!

Photography by Veronica Crawford

If you’re lucky enough to live in a place that has natural wood paneling in the bedroom (and it’s in good condition) consider leaving it or preserving it or staining it. It can be a gorgeous place to display art, like Brady Tolbert did here, and will be it’s own accent wall with very little lift on your part.

Paint a Ledge

Zara Home

Have a ledge that’s potentially awkward/you don’t know what to do with it? Embrace it! A lime washed wall adds texture and interest and then you can paint the ledge a tonal shade for a serene, calm vibe. Use the ledge to lean art against the wall or, if it’s deep enough, for a stack of books for bedtime reading.


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