In D.I.Y.,

Herringbone Accent Wall {DIY}

We bought our home back in September 2013, and while we love every square inch of it, we had some painting to do.

I really wanted an accent wall for our master bedroom, and came upon this amazing herringbone painted ceiling that I adored. So I thought to myself, “Hey, self: I bet it’s way easier to paint this on a wall than on a ceiling.”

I grabbed two gray colors that were on the same palette [Benjamin Moore: Baltic Grey (left) and Nimbus (right)]…


balticgrey nimbus




…from my favorite paint store in the Conejo Valley, Agoura Paint.  The guys that work here are so knowledgeable, and gave us a great deal on our paint.  They even match and create custom colors — awesome!

**Before you start – make sure that you have painted one of your colors as the base color on your accent wall, and that it has dried for at least 48 hours before attempting this project! Ye be warned!**

Now, here’s how to do it:

1. Divide your wall into 4 equal parts.  This is easily done by finding the center, running a line of painter’s tape down the middle, then separating the two sides in half, running another tape line down each middle.  Now, you should have 4 evenly-spaced vertical sections of your wall, sectioned off by 5 lines of painter’s tape – don’t forget to tape off the sides, so that you don’t get paint on the adjacent walls! (by the way, I used 1/2″ or 3/4″ painter’s tape).

2. Use a template to start marking your spots for horizontal lines.  I made mine 10 inches in width – which means I took a measuring tape, and marked down my tape lines every 10 inches.  Hint: mark across almost the whole tape line, because you will be using the mark from both sides of the tape.  Do this for all 5 lines of painter’s tape.

3. Starting in the upper left corner, take a piece of painter’s tape and connect mark #1 on the left side, with mark #2 on the right side of that section.  Take a look at this picture, and it may help.


Now, we want all of the herringbone pieces the same size, correct?  Hold on to your brains, people, because this might get confusing.  We’ll make it through together, I promise.

The sections that are staying the same as your base color: put the tape lines on the inside of your marked lines.

The sections that will be painted a different color: make sure the tape lines are on the outside of your marked lines.

4. As a big helper, and as was recommended to me, I put a little dot of tape in the sections that were not going to be painted.  This really helped when I stepped back to double-check my work.  See how those sections are a little bit skinner than the ones without a tape dot?  It’s because I put my tape lines on the inside of my marked lines.

I know this looks somewhat complicated, but I promise: it actually got really easy and quick, and, dare I say it — FUN.

5. To make really crisp lines, and to avoid paint bleeding through your tape lines (which is a total buzz kill, btw), use paintable caulking, and run a thin line of caulk along the edges of your tape lines.  Save time by only running caulk on the inside paint lines for the sections that are going to get painted (i.e., the ones without the tape dot).  Don’t forget to make as many inappropriate jokes as possible.  Now’s the time.

6. Once the caulk has dried, start painting!  I’ve found that a mini, high-density foam roller works best here.  Have a mini paintbrush on hand for touch ups.  Do a couple of coats, especially if your base color is darker than your top color.  Pull the tape when the paint is barely tacky (at an angle – don’t forget!) and…


Voilá! An easy-peasy herringbone accent wall that will get you so many Martha Stewart Bonus Points you just won’t even be able to deal.

And, I’ll let you take the credit.


Nicole {LL805}

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