Customizing Walls: How to Customize Interior Walls

paneling and shelves

Blank walls lack character. They're plain, lifeless, and so downright expressionless that they take away any hint of warmth or homeyness.

Projects in Customizing Walls

Choose Your Style
Wall treatments help define functional areas, lend character to a room, and can even make spaces appear larger by giving the visitor's eye a variety of interesting paths to follow. Walls that show style and beauty add value to your home too.

There are a variety of wall treatments that will boost the architectural interest of your home. Maybe your home is a vintage structure ready for another element in its established style. Or maybe your home's personality is a bit timeworn and ready for a makeover. Or it may be that your house is searching for an identity.

A beaded wainscot will resuscitate a nearly lifeless family room. You can give your living room a vigorous boost with an Arts and Crafts paneled wall. Maybe you'll show your sense of style by adding classic framed panels to your dining room.

Small jobs, big dividends
Not every wall treatment requires a truckload of molding and a boatload of time to make a lasting impression.

Prefinish some strips of molding and you can run a chair rail around your kitchen in an afternoon. In one more afternoon, you can add a picture molding to a bedroom, creating a vintage look. In addition, you'll be able to change picture arrangements almost instantly and without driving a single nail into the wall.

A plate rail can display fine china, photos, or other artwork. Install the rail all the way around the room or limit it to a simple shelf unit.

Built-ins add charm
Carpenters in the past probably enjoyed exercising their ingenuity by creating built-in shelves and decorative niches. Fortunately, you don't need to serve an apprenticeship before you craft a simple shelf unit and insert it into unused space between studs in your wall. For an even easier project, purchase a ready-made niche. It's a simple way to add character to your home.

One Hour or Less

Three simple projects to cross off of your to-do list -- just print these instructions and begin!