Creative Wall Decoration Ideas That Do Not Involve Paint

Visit an interior paint showroom in your city, and you will be inundated by a plethora of paint options. Technology has made it possible to create paints in a variety of colors, textures, glossiness, and applications.

Can’t find the particular color, hue, tone, or shade that you want? There are now businesses that can mix paint for you. Taking advantage of this option allows you to have paint colors that are totally unique to you and your project.

But what if you want something different? Something other than paint?

The walls are your canvas, but art doesn’t always have to involve brushes and paint. You can still create a masterpiece using other mediums. But to do so, you need to know what other options are available and when to apply them.

If you are looking into giving your space a makeover and a whole new personality, there are plenty of wall decoration alternatives to paint. Here are a few ideas to consider:

1. Wallpaper

In Europe, the earliest evidence of affixing rolls of paper to the wall appeared around the early 1500s. The practice involved pasting artwork, instead of the traditional manner of framing and hanging the masterpiece. Wallpaper was expensive and exclusive to members of the nobility and the elite.

Fast forward to modern times, and you can find this decorative wall material in an abundance of colors, patterns, designs, and sizes. Traditional wallpaper has been known to be pricey with the materials and labor needed to apply this wall treatment. But this has changed over the years as well.

The modern wallpaper for walls is created by professionals to help you to build an inspiring and unique space. Designer wallpaper can be used in bathrooms, kitchens, or any room to update the feel of the space. It comes in a variety of eccentric styles as well as more classic themes.

Manufacturers have developed peel-off and stick-on types which are easier to apply and remove. As the newer ones are made from environment-friendly recycled materials, homeowners can freely give their rooms an updated look every few years, if they so desired.

The choices are nothing to scoff at, either. There are tens of thousands of designs and prints available from different businesses. Much like paint, you can also get a unique customized print.

2. Tapestries and stretched fabric

Paint can change the way a wall, the floor, or ceiling looks, but even then, the surface can still seem hard and cold. Leaving the walls in white or in a single color makes the space look bland and unappealing. One way to break the space and create a focal point is to cover an area with fabric.

There are several ways to use fabric. You can match the material on your walls with the upholstery. Alternatively, you can use different shades of the same color and spread it around the room – on the wall, your furniture, carpet, or curtains, among others.

It is also possible to use complementary colors. There are plenty of ways to play with fabric on the walls. Work with a designer to see what other options are available.

Filling an entire wall with wall fabric may seem unappealing or overwhelming for some people. But you don’t have to cover all the walls with a cloth. Instead, you can hang a tapestry, much in the same way that our ancestors first discovered wallpaper.

If you want to add personality or your own unique touch, you can make your own tapestry, hang a quilt, or put up some of your own handmade pieces. Turn your home into a private gallery and use your walls to feature your crocheted or hand-stitched masterpieces.

3. Wall decals

Removable wall decals have evolved significantly over the last several years. Designs vary from playful and vibrant to subtle and sophisticated.

Think of decals in the same way as tapestry and choose a single wall to apply these on. Behind the bed in your bedroom is one ideal spot. Any other significant piece of furniture such as the sofa can also work.

Place a single large decal or build a scene using several smaller ones. The choice is yours, depending on the look you wish to achieve.

4. Private art gallery

Are you a photographer, an artist, or someone who loves arts and crafts? If you want to add personality or your own unique touch, you can make your own tapestry, hang a quilt, post your photos, or display some of your own handmade pieces. Turn your home into a gallery and use your walls to feature your masterpieces.

If artistry is not in your blood, you can still turn your walls into an art gallery with other people’s work. The cost of this type of wall treatment can vary significantly depending on the medium and application method. For instance, one practical suggestion is to cut up photos from National Geographic that you can hang on the wall.

You can fill the wall with photos of your family placed in frames of different colors and sizes. Or perhaps you have souvenirs purchased during your travels that you want to hang up on your wall.

At the other end of the spectrum are more expensive art pieces. Depending on the size of the piece and the artist, a single artwork can easily cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, and even more.

Painting is not the only way to give your walls or surfaces life and character. Take note of these ideas so you can make any space inside your home look more vibrant. Talk to a designer, a wall fabric dealer, or wallpaper supplier today to see what you can do with your to breathe new life into your walls.


James Prathap is one of the Directors of NGC Nafees, top importers and exporters of wallpapers, floorings and fabrics in India. The business also offers high-quality panoramics, coordinated fabrics, and creative stickers for residential and commercial projects.