Decorating tall walls can be…well…tricky! There’s so much space to fill that the task can seem overwhelming. To make it easier for you, here’s a look at 28 perfect ideas for these oversized spaces that will complete the look of your room.

Popular for many years now are homes with those coveted high ceilings.  Although 8′ ceilings are still standard, many homes now boast 10′, 12′ or even more!  And even homes with lower ceilings still might have vaulted ceilings in some areas.  While the added height makes a room feel bigger, it also creates a decorating dilemma…..what to do with those tall walls!

The Trick to Decorating Tall Walls

If you’ve ever tried decorating tall walls, you’ve probably quickly realized that standard techniques and decor items don’t work very well – they’re just too small for such a large space!  If your decor ends at the standard 8′ height, the room will likely feel unfinished and cavernous.  Instead, embrace all of that wonderful space!  Thankfully, there are several, easy ways to tackle those big blank canvases and make them feel incorporated into your home.

With all of the ideas below, the goal is to either bring the eye up to include the entire space, or bring the eye down to a more human scale.

28 Decorating Ideas for Tall Walls from Tidbits&Twine

1. Artwork

Standard-sized artwork will be too small for tall walls, but you can still use it if you create a large-scale gallery wall.

Tall walls with eclectic gallery wall exposed brick and corner fireplace
{via Lonny}

If your style is more symmetrical, consider using a grouping of matching frames to create the illusion of one, large piece of artwork.

Grouping of 12 frames above a sofa in a traditional living room
{via ElleDecor}

Alternatively, you can use one, oversized image to fill the space!  In this case, be sure your artwork shape is proportionate to the wall in which you’re trying to fill.  {For example, a skinny, rectangular canvas would look too small in this space, no matter how tall it was.}

Pink and yellow oversized art canvas above a white fireplace with two yellow chairs in front

2. Mirrors

Similar to artwork, mirrors can be used to fill the space.  An added benefit of using mirrors is that they can help brighten an otherwise dark area, or when placed near large windows, they can help create a sense of balance.  Here, a collection of mirrors has been used to fill the entire space above a staircase.

Similar to artwork, you can create an eclectic display using a mix of mirrors and artwork.

One, big mirror can also fill the space and create a WOW factor!

White an blue french elegant living room with gold mirrors crystal chandelier and blue curtains
{via Pinterest}

3. Millwork

A plain, sheet rocked wall isn’t all that interesting, but add a bit of millwork and you’ve got a different story!  Trim elements add interest and architecture and help bring the eye up so that the wall is part of the overall space.

Below, the artwork itself isn’t all that big, but it’s surrounded by trim that helps to fill up the wall.

Below, the lack of decor on the walls lets the millwork speak for itself!

4. Shelving

Tall walls provide ample space for storage, whether built-ins, freestanding or just floating shelves.

Tall recessed bookcase filled with books in a gray living room with blue chairs
{via The Design Walker}
Brown modern bookcase floating on a wall with a ladder to reach the books
{via Pinterest}
Three floating shelves holding framed art above a yellow sofa
{via Transitoinicial}

5. Murals & Wallpaper

Adding wallpaper or paint elements to the upper half of the wall is yet another way to draw the eye up.

French wall mural depicting a green garden on living room walls
{via JBMA}
Blue wallpaper in a dining room with blue seating and pink roses
{via D Home}

Below, an oversized vinyl decal does the trick to fill this space!

Blue and gray triangle geometric mural above a blue sofa with wood stump coffee table
{via Pixers}

6. Display Pieces

If you don’t find artwork you like, consider mounting an oversized display item, such as a clock, old shutters, or even a hanging rug!

Entryway foyer with cowhide rug and huge clock hanging above console table that holds two orchids
{via Pinterest}
Antique french doors hanging above a white and marble fireplace with a huge crystal chandelier
{via Traditional Home}
Black and white geometric wall hanging on the stairwell with white walls
{via Makely}
blue and white plates hanging on the wall of a modern loft above a tv
{via Talloor}

7. Use One, Tall Focal Point

You don’t always have to fill the space.  Depending on your decorating style, sometimes less is more.  If adding millwork isn’t your style and you don’t want to fill your walls with items, consider using one, oversized item as a focal point to help draw the eyes up.  Below, the walls are bare but the dramatic fireplace is balanced by the tall curtains, filling the volume of this room.

Vaulted living room with white molding above fireplace and built in bookcases on sides
{via Pinterest}

8. Cut the Space in Two

While the other ideas listed above are all aimed at helping bring the eye up to include the tall wall as part of the overall space, this idea is more about bringing the eye down to a more human scale for a cozier feel.  That doesn’t mean you leave the upper half of the wall blank, but rather that you treat the upper and lower portions separately.  {And although I say in “half”, I don’t necessarily mean that literally because it depends on your space.}

Two story foyer with herringbone brick floor and blue velvet settee
{via Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles}

Below, the wall has been cut to ceiling height of the surrounding space and the upper portion has been given its own, unique treatment.

Two story living room with gray wall molding and sunburst mirror above built in with piano
{via Toll Brothers}

A simple piece of trim cuts this wall down and makes a frame for the canvas art.

And a bonus #29….This bathroom treatment is simple, yet absolutely stunning, and the wallpaper at the top is a great way to break up the white walls!

You might have noticed that several of the above photos use more than one decorating technique to fill the space.  For example, artwork and millwork, or paint and display items, or millwork and wallpaper, etc.  Regardless of whether you use one idea or several, the goal is to utilize the entire volume of a room, and if that includes tall walls, be sure to keep the scale of the room in mind and decorate up accordingly!

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  1. ueling creativity and style, this decorating ideas ensemble for tall walls is a visual delight, elevating spaces with ingenious design solutions! Enhance your tall walls effortlessly with large stickers—easy to apply and remove—allowing for a dynamic and personalized style evolution at your fingertips.

  2. Eric Gilbertsen says:

    Very nice article. I’m building an extra tall fireplace in my two-story living room to give it a dramatic focal point. It’s only 10″ deep, so it won’t reduce the floor space much, but plenty ďeep for an electric fireplace and recessed TV.

  3. jeani miner says:

    These are great ideas. I love that you explain WHY it works. One question though. In the room with the yellow and pink print over the fireplace the print is wider than the mantel. That just feels so out of sync to me. Why does this work (or does it)?

    1. Tidbits&Twine says:

      Hi Jeani! Great question! Usually, this is a visual no-no because it dwarfs the fireplace, but in this case, the silver planters act to visually extend the width of the fireplace. If you look at the wall overall, you’ll see that the oversized art is “sitting” on the wider base formed by the planters and fireplace. This can be tricky to successfully pull off and even when done correctly, not everyone is comfortable with the look because it’s unexpected.

      On a related note, you can use this same concept to visually extend things which might be too small for the scale of your home. For example, if your sofa is a bit short, you can add a side table that closely matches the height of the sofa’s arm and it’ll trick the eye into reading everything together as one large piece. You can also take a piece of art that is too small for the wall, and flank it with sconces, or mirrors, or shutters, and make the grouping look larger than the one art piece actually is.

      I hope that answers your question!

      -Kim :)

      1. jeani miner says:

        Thanks. I suspected that was the case. Had the vases been taller I think I would have ‘seen’ it. But good to know that this approach can be used when needing to stretch a piece of furniture.

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