How to Paint Your Wall—With Stripes

Source: Thinkstock

Every winter, I find myself slouching in the couch, trying to think of fun things to do that don’t require a million layers and hideous winter boots. However, it usually ends with a bottle of wine and a sappy rom-com movie on Netflix. Now that I’ve become a Pinterest addict, that also takes up enough of my time. It was during one of my Pinterest binges that I came across the accent walls section featuring a striped wall DIY project.

Painting in the winter time—who does that? Turns out a lot of people save their paint jobs for the colder months because, well, there isn’t much left to do. Also, paint dries better and gives your wall that finished look painters dream of. Keep in mind, this depends on the brand and type of paint you decide to use. Check your paint cans to see what it says about painting in cold temperatures, or, feel free to ask the guys at the paint shop to get their professional advice.

So, of course I pinned a ton of designs for inspiration. I found one that seems simple enough to follow along and I wanted to share it with our fans. If at the end of this post, you’re so inspired that you actually go out and try it (like I will in the upcoming weeks), please feel free to share your before and after photos with us. We’d love to see your designs.

Painting room

Source: iStock

Getting Started

Before we get started, be sure to check out our 13 Quick and Easy Interior Painting Tips.

Begin by measuring the height of the wall that you chose to work on. Then, decide on the amount of stripes you want. Divide that number by the total height of the wall to get the exact width of each stripe. This is a trial and error process that allows you to decide on a final look. Increasing the number of stripes will decrease the width of each stripe, while reducing the number of stripes will increase the width of each. Don’t be afraid to play with numbers here; this is the only time you have to make a mistake that’s easy to fix.

Start from the bottom. Measure and mark, with a pencil, the width of each stripe. Next, get a long ruler to draw the lines across the entire wall. Be very careful as this will be your guide for the painter’s tape. Apply the painters tape directly over your pencil markings. You should be able to see your design more clearly at this point.

Tip: To keep track of which stripe won’t get painted, stick a few pieces of tape inside it as reminder markers.

If you want crisp, clean lines with every stripe without paint bleeding underneath the tape, seal the tape by painting the background wall color over the tape’s edges, before you paint the actual stripes.

By doing this, the background color bleeds underneath the tape, but because it’s the same color as the wall, you can’t see it. When it dries, it creates a seal, so the next color can’t bleed under.


Source: iStock

Painting in the Stripes

After the sealing layer has dried completely, usually a couple of hours (you can also check the recoat times on the back of the paint tin), you can proceed to paint in your stripes.

After you apply the second coat to your stripes, peel the tape off while the paint is still wet so your tape doesn’t get glued to the wall. At the same time, don’t remove your tape too soon and realize that you missed a spot that needed a touch up. Use your best judgment for this step in the process. You run the risk of peeling off your top coat if you leave the tape too long after the last coat has been added.


And that’s it. Painting is all about following directions and having a bit of patience while the paint dries. Feeling inspired yet? What types of accent walls have you tried in your home? Show us your designs in the comments below.

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