Before and After: A $74 Accent Wall Transforms This Once-Green Bedroom

published Jan 21, 2020
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Credit: Kate Dreyer

When you buy a new-to-you home, you’re likely to inherit a bunch of wall colors that you may not have chosen yourself (it’s one reason why real estate agents recommend a neutral paint redo before you list your own home).

At Kate Dreyer’s home, one such hand-me-down color was the bright apple green on the walls of her daughter’s bedroom. “Because we were so overwhelmed with higher priority house projects that summer after our move date, we left the green walls alone and I decided to decorate around them,” Kate says. But it turns out bright apple green was… really bright. “Every time I entered my daughter’s room, I felt the urge to reach for a pair of sunglasses,” Kate says.

Five years later, it was time for a change—mostly because Kate had reached her limit with the green, but also because her daughter was now 8 years old and ready for a room that felt a touch more tween-friendly.

Credit: Kate Dreyer

Kate wanted the space to reflect her daughter, so they spent time together looking at pictures on Pinterest and perusing Etsy for ideas. Kate’s master bedroom closet is covered in spotted wallpaper, and her daughter wanted a similar look; to save money, Kate opted to paint the spots on the accent walls using a stencil from Royal Design Studio. That paint project cost just $74 in full—”far less than what I would have paid had I gone the wallpaper route!” Kate says. The rest of the room got a couple coats of crisp white.

Credit: Kate Dreyer

Her daughter also asked for a “rainbow-y” space with lots of color, so Kate filled it with accessories that felt lively but not too juvenile. An area rug from Walmart has cool bohemian vibes, but at a very handsome under-$200 price. For the art above the bed, Kate used an app called Doodlespot to turn her daughter’s art projects into blown-up framed prints; the middle piece is from Society6. Kate kept both the nightstand (from Crate & Kids) and the bed (a sleek IKEA piece) from before. Both look brand-new in the fresh surroundings.

“I love everything about this room now, and most importantly so does my daughter,” says Kate. “It’s bright, fun and spunky, just like her.” And, Kate says, this room refresh proves that you don’t need a full reno to make a space look totally different. “Sometimes it’s really the little details—a new, colorful area rug or a stenciled accent wall—that make the biggest impact,” says Kate.

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