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Ask a Designer: Alternatives to Paint


Q: What are some options for the walls besides paint?

Janice: Besides paint, because paint is one of the least expensive things that you can do, but wallpaper. I mean you can do wallpaper on your walls. You can just do a border around. A border will really add a lot of color and a lot of interest.

The other thing you can do if your budget is a little bit higher, you can do things like brick or stone. If you don't have the budget for that but you like the look, you could possibly do a faux finish. There are a lot of artists out there that will help with a faux finish look and it can be anything from a simple color wash that gives you a really smooth, soft look to something that actually has a pattern in it that might look like a stonewall.

Christine: If you got more of a traditional or a more of a cottage-y kitchen, you can always do a wainscoting tile more than just your backsplash. You can bring it around on the walls a little bit more. Artwork is always great. There's all different types of paint options out there as terms of faux finishing; moldings on the wall. Those are all big things that you can do to accent the design.

If you have the ceiling height, it’s always nice to add some ceiling details. Beans, coffered ceilings are always beautiful. Those can work in contemporary or traditional applications, definitely. Any little bit of architecture is always nice.