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12 Best Bare Wall Makeovers You Just Have To See

  • by Arthur Harrison
  • 6 min read

There’s nothing quite like a dramatic room makeover, and it’s especially satisfying to see their before and after pictures. But most of these compilations and comparisons marvel at the overall transformation of a room, rarely focusing on the walls.

If you know anything about us, we love to emphasize the impact a well-decorated wall can bring, so it was only natural for us to scour the Internet for the best wall makeovers out there.

This article compiles our excellent finds. Read on!

12 Amazing Before and After Wall Makeovers

1. Before: Bare and uninspired

A small unfurnished room
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert 

There’s nothing wrong with a clean, blank wall, but it’s more about what it lacks rather than what you can add to it. You can add a wall sculpture, for instance, but it might not be a fit. Instead, consider the wall as an integral part of a space and start from there.

In this before picture, there’s not much going on, but that’s about to change.

After: Chic and functional

A home office with a large mirror on a wall
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert 

There’s only one change to this room’s walls, but it’s a big change. The large gold-framed wall mirror can look unremarkable at first, but it adds a classy touch to the space and makes it feel bigger without completely overwhelming the rest of the room. It’s a great example of selecting a simple decor piece and making it count.

2. Before: Outdated and unsophisticated

Living room with white brick wall and outdated decor
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

With the white brick and lonesome picture shelf, not to mention the dark orange splash on the right, these walls needed some rethinking and a bit more redecorating. 

After: Fresh and coordinated

Redesigned living room with picture shelf wall and aztec wall hangings
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

Not only was the brick done away with, but this transformation opted for a clean, nude look as the background for a full wall of picture shelves. Note the variety of frames used, too, with alternating sizes and both light-colored and black frames. The left wall also now enjoys a unique living room wall art setup featuring an Aztec wall design that sets the tone for the room.

3. Before: Bland and basic

While you can say this room is barely even furnished, there’s also more to wall decor than just hanging things on the wall, as you’ll soon see in the after photo of this transformation.

Empty room with only one sofa by windows

After: Lively and rich

This do-over said goodbye to white walls and hello to rich, earthy shades. The star-shaped light fixture is also an interesting statement piece that brings warmth alongside the dominant cool accents of the room.

Living room with blue satin curtains, brown walls, and a large star-shaped light fixture on the wall

4. Before: Loud and harsh

A living room with bright yellow walls, a large picture, and tropical patterned decor
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

This living room is not only noisy style-wise, it also almost feels like all the volume is making it a bit cramped. Most of the walls are also unadorned, although you can’t miss the bright yellow wall paint job.

After: Warm and boho

A boho-style living room with a macrame wall hanging and a picture wall
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

You’re probably thinking, “Is this even still the same room?” Make no mistake, it’s the very same space, just renovated to open up the floor plan. The walls have received quite a makeover in the process, featuring a salon wall and a macramé wall hanging. We also can’t ignore the patterned wallpaper treatment in the back, complete with a sunburst mirror.

5. Before: Mismatched and too spacious

Wide living room with a brick fireplace
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

‘Too big’ is not a complaint you hear often, but we have to admit it sticks out as an issue in this case. The wall decor is also limited to the fireplace mantle, so the walls are practically begging for a makeover.

After: Cozy and charming

A corner living room with a gallery wall and a painting
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

The pictures arranged close together in this after photo help to make the room feel more compact and homey. They fill up the space nicely with large wall decor and a gallery wall of smaller pictures, and the colors blend well with the rest of the space.

6. Before: Dark and so-so

Living room with plain walls, some couches, and a TV set
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

Looking at one blank wall after another in this before photo, you might notice how windows are more connected to walls than in just the literal sense. The curtains we use, for one, can influence how bright and vivid the decor on our walls appears.

After: Airy and sleek

Living room with a picture wall, a large framed print, and woven wall hangings
Image courtesy of Jasmine Roth 

This stunning redesign features a monochrome picture wall, a matching wall mirror, and an oversized picture enjoying much of the natural light that pours in through the doors. Peep the fairly large wall decor to the right as well—the woven hanging baskets give the space a DIY room decor flair without straying from the overall aesthetic.

7. Before: Simple wooden accents

Small bathroom with wooden half wall and a mirror
Image courtesy of Little Vintage Cottage 

This cute little bathroom has no-fuss walls, and with the limited space, it’s understandable. But one thing we know about home decor is that if there’s a will, there’s a way.

After: Cheerful and quaint

Small bathroom redesigned using bright floral wallpaper, shelves with pictures, and a vintage mirror
Image courtesy of Little Vintage Cottage 

After this overhaul, the bathroom’s walls are now the highlight, complete with wooden shelves, a vintage mirror, and funky floral wallpaper. The space even looks less narrow this time. Now that’s a makeover, wouldn’t you agree?

8. Before: Unexciting with no personality

Nothing much to see here—just a standard white wall that is great as a blank canvas for unique home design projects. How does this dull, blank wall transform, you ask?

Empty room with plain wall and ceiling fixture
Image courtesy of Apartment Therapy 

After: Quirky and bold

Wall accents can do wonders for what would otherwise be a basic wall, and this is a fantastic example. A stylistic paint job, like this rectangular accent wall that extends toward the ceiling, elevates the look of a space, and a dynamic selection of framed posters provides the right amount of oomph.

Redesigned room with a wall accent, two medium framed prints, and quirky furnishings
Image courtesy of Apartment Therapy 

9. Before: Minimalist and sterile

Open unfurnished room with blank walls and countertops
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert 

We like this minimalist look, but it’s hard for us to resist the allure of some nice wall decor. Maybe a wall hanging, or other decorative art?

After: Distinct and inspired

Open space with floating shelves and woven wall hangings
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert

Where the before picture makes you think of a homeowner without a particular style, this room makeover is much more expressive. The hanging shelves give a subtle modern sheen to the place and the wall paint is in harmony with the muted rustic palette. The woven wall hangings are a cool detail that also serve as focal points for the room.

10. Before: Too red

Red TV wall with no decor in a living room
Image courtesy of Driven by Decor

Sometimes, we pick out a wall color that looks perfect in our mind’s eye, only for it to look quite off in execution. That seems to be the case for this living room wall, not to mention the utter bareness of it.

After: Bright and modern

TV wall painted in white and decorated to be a monochrome picture wall
Image courtesy of Driven by Decor

Is this a wall makeover or is this a wall makeover? Not only is the red gone, but the entirety of this TV wall is now an incredible picture wall completely in monochrome. The pictures frame the TV and would blend right in with the TV turned on. It’s so seamless it almost looks like there’s only a picture gallery and no walls.

Are you interested in creating your own gallery wall? You can get started with this article:

11. Before: Lifeless and disorganized

Empty room with one big gray cabinet and blank walls
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert

Having a large piece of furniture is no excuse for leaving your walls undecorated. In this before picture, the bare walls make the room seem even emptier than it already is.

After: Brimming with personality

Warm room with woven wall decor and a shelf with a wall mirror
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert

After a makeover, the room now feels more welcoming. Woven pieces of wall decor are arranged across the walls of the space, but in no way random or cluttered. A singular shelf with a wall mirror has also been added as a practical touch.

12. Before: A bit gaudy

Empty room with blank bright yellow walls except for one sofa
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert

These walls might not look as tacky with themed decor, but we might never really know. What do you think a couple of framed pictures might do for a wall like this one?

After: Calm and inviting

Living room with minimal wall decor, two framed pictures, and a wooden ladder decorated with string lights
Image courtesy of Sébastien Robert

Now with an updated wall paint job, this room looks easy to relax in. The living room wall art is minimal, but it shows the impact of a thoughtful design, even with just two framed prints such as in the above image. The string lights on a ladder leaning against the wall also contribute to a warm and pleasant vibe.

Final thoughts

Before and after comparisons of wall makeovers are one of the simplest ways to draw inspiration for your own wall design upgrades. As you saw in this article, anything from a light touchup to a full renovation makes a worthwhile difference.

Which one was your favorite wall makeover? Let us know in the comments!

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