How to Bring a DIY Mural Wall Into Your Chicagoland Home

How to Bring a DIY Mural Wall Into Your Chicagoland Home

One of the biggest joys of owning a house is showcasing your interests, tastes, and personality through your home decor. Working with paint, wallpaper, or wall decals are affordable and easy ways to add visual appeal and style to any room. 

Colorful accent walls and murals are especially popular right now. Even if you don’t have a lot of painting or decorating experience, you can still get creative, have fun, and enjoy the fruits of your artistic endeavors for years to come. Ready to add some flair to your living space? Here are our favorite tips and tricks for bringing a DIY mural wall into your Chicagoland home.

Getting started on your mural wall

The very first thing to do is decide what you’d like to have and where. Bedrooms and family rooms are popular locations for mural walls, but you can also put one in a kitchen, bathroom, or hallway. Just make sure the area is well-lit, well-ventilated, and large enough for your overall design. You’ll want to make sure your mural is able to be viewed from several angles so it can serve as a stunning focal point for the room. 

Choosing what kind of mural to paint can be difficult, as the possibilities are literally endless. If you’re looking for inspiration, spend some time scrolling through Pinterest for thousands of ideas that are sure to lead you to the perfect colors and designs to suit your style. 

While painting a mural yourself is very rewarding, you can also find peel-and-stick panels online that are really simple to put up and easily removed if you change your mind. Another interesting option is to cover your accent wall with black chalkboard paint so you can add and wipe away different works of art whenever you want.

If you decide to go fully DIY with a painted design, you’ll need to load up on some basic supplies to get the most professional results:

  • Pencils
  • Various sized paint brushes or sponges
  • A roller and tray
  • Painters tape
  • Palette
  • Acrylic or latex paint
  • Cleaning supplies like paper towels, rags, water, and buckets 
  • Drop cloths (canvas or plastic)
  • Sandpaper
  • A skin-friendly soap that removes paint

Prepare the surface for your mural wall

Once you’ve made those decisions, the next step is to move anything you can out of the way and cover the rest with drop cloths to protect them from excess paint. Use mild dishwashing soap and warm water to wash away any dust, dirt, or grease from your wall — and if it’s in a high-traffic area, you might want to let it dry and then give it one more wash to ensure it’s totally clean.

Now is a great time to repair any damage to the wall or fix any imperfections. You’ll want a nice smooth surface for your mural design so your art will look great and last much longer. Take measurements of the wall space you want to cover so you know exactly how much material to purchase.

Whether you’re painting or stickering, preparing the wall with the right kind of primer will save you money on the more expensive colored paint you’ll need for your mural. Water-based latex primer is pretty much all-purpose and easy to clean up if spilled, but the oil-based variety is better for blocking stains and for covering porous surfaces. 

Primer helps your paint (or decals) adhere to the wall and produces a richer finish with better color. If you’ve previously painted the wall very dark, several coats of primer might be needed. Your local shop will be able to tint the primer to any shade you prefer. It’s also cheaper than paint, and one gallon of it covers between 250 to 400 square feet, depending on the wall’s texture and how heavy-handed you are. Be sure to let your primer dry completely between coats. 

Time to apply yourself

Once your wall is clean and primed, go ahead and take the plunge! If you’re painting the wall a base color, go ahead and do that, otherwise, you can start to lay out your design. Start with a pencil outline of your artwork first, as this is easy to erase if you make a small mistake. If you’re working with decals or other peel-and-stick materials, you can use double-sided tape to perfect placement first before removing the more permanent adhesive backing.

Going with an abstract or geometric design? Then the painter’s tape mentioned above will help you stay on the straight and narrow. Laying out your design with removable tape will help you gain more confidence before you need to apply the first splash of color.

You can also use an inexpensive projector to shine your artwork on the wall and create guidelines for painting. Depending on the kind of mural you’re making, you might want to utilize the grid method for transferring your artwork from the page to the much larger surface. Artists have been using this technique for centuries to bring their soaring masterpieces to life. 

Doing a little bit at a time and adding layers as you go will help you keep calm, manage any mistakes, and truly enjoy the process. Once you’ve completed your mural wall, be sure to take plenty of photos with different kinds of lighting to show off your talent and hard work. And remember, it’s your home, and all that matters is if the final results bring you joy. The best thing about DIY is that you can always do it over if you don’t love it.

Love where you live

If you’re spending more time at home these days, why not maximize your space with a creative DIY mural wall? Today’s endless paint colors and other removable options make it possible to showcase your personality without spending a fortune on expensive or faddish home decor. It’s also easy to change up if it no longer works for you.

Being a homeowner is definitely rewarding, but it also comes with ongoing challenges and unforeseen costs. We’ve been assisting Chicagoland residents with their property needs since 1855, and our wide range of expertise and local historical knowledge can help you find exactly what you want, wherever you are on this journey. Give us a call today!

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