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From Drab to Fab: 19 Examples of the Wood Accent Wall Phenomenon

Published on March 28, 2023

This is not about the now cheesy wood-paneled walls circa 1970s.  There’s a whole new approach to wood accent walls in homes, especially living rooms and bedrooms.  I’m talking about some very cool, modern designs using wood. But that’s not all; wood accent walls are also going vintage with the farmhouse look.

In some cases, wood takes up the entire wall. In other cases, part of the wall.

This article explores wood accent walls in-depth with an emphasis on a variety of custom designs.  After the gallery of examples, you’ll find more information.

Wood Accent Wall Examples

1. Burnt wood effect

Burnt wood effect for accent wall on covered deck

The first example is a wood accent wall for a covered deck with a burnt wood effect. It’s found in a project by the lead designer, Keely Smith, at my interior design firm.

2. Partial textured distressed wood accent wall

Partial textured distressed wood accent wall

The above example is super interesting. It’s a textured design but is a partial covering giving an “unfinished” look. I think it’s amazing. See this home.

3. Wood fireplace mantle wall

Wood fireplace mantle wall

The wood accent mantle wall is fairly common. It’s a great look in most living rooms.  It adds warmth to the space.

4. Horizontal full-wall

Horizontal full-wall all wood

This example gives off a minimalist vibe. Of course, it helps the room itself is a minimalist design but the wall doesn’t veer from that look. 

5. The distressed wood accent wall

Guest room with distressed wood accent wall

For rustic decor fans, the wide-plank distressed accent wood wall is a great look. See this home.

6. The wood half-wall

The wood half-wall

Here’s an example where the wood wall is a half-wall. It’s not terribly effective but it’s interesting how it blends with the wood floor.

7. The vertical wood accent strip

The vertical wood accent strip

This design is my favorite example of a wood accent wall. I love how it continues onto the ceiling.  It’s only part of the wall and ceiling so it doesn’t overshelm the room. See this home.

8. Basic simple wood accent wall

Basic simple wood accent wall

Here is an example of a fairly plain wood accent wall.  I think it’s better than if the wall was white like the other walls. See this home.

9. Textured skinny vertical wood accent wall

Textured skinny vertical wood accent wall

This wall reminds me of angel hair pasta in that the wood pieces are super skinny giving off a heavily textured look. See this home.

10. Spaced-out vertical wood accent wall

Spaced out vertical wood accent wall

Here’s an example where the wood slats are spaced out quite a bit creating a very textured look.

11. Hexagon accent wood wall

Hexagon wood accent wall

I can’t say I’m wild about the hexagon “honey comb” look but if you are, it’s an option. Learn more here.

12. Partial vertical wood accent wall with built-in lighting

Partial vertical accent wood wall

The continuity of the partial wood accent wall with the bed platform sleeping area is brilliant. I really like this look but it’s certainly not as easy to install as just the wall. Learn more.

13. Textured horizontal thin slat wood accent wall

I’m also a a huge fan of the textured look. Notice how the wood pieces are not flush but instead creates a textured look. I love that. Learn more.

14. White-washed herringbone wood accent wall

Herringbone wood accent wall

I like the herringbone effect especially if the rest of the room is simply designed. However, I’m not wild about the white-washed look. Learn more.

15.  Minimalist wood accent wall

The art piece wood accent wall

Above is an example of the wood merely being an accent on the accent wall; akin to a work of art instead of being a full accent wall. It’s a great way to add enhance any wall.  Just don’t do it too much in the same room. Learn more.


16. Dark wood accent wall

Dark distressed wood accent wall in the bedroom

For a darker room effect, the above distressed dark wood is a beautiful option.  Learn more.

17. The “highlight” wood accent wall

The highlight accent wood wall in bedroom

I also really like how the wood accent wall is designed to frame the bed. It’s simple but extremely effective.  Learn more.

18. Cubed wood accent wall

A cubed wood accent wall

By now you’ve probably figured out I’m a big fan of texture and so I love this textured cubed wood accent wall design.  Learn more.

19. Farmhouse-style wood accent wall

Farmhouse style wood accent wall

Our final example is a natural wood in farmhouse style for an entire wall. It’s a bit too much wood for my liking but I do like the natural, distressed look. Learn more.

Why go through the expense and additional work for a textured wood accent wall?

Aside from the fact they look amazing, there are some practical and functional benefits to wood accent walls. They are:

Insulates: Wood accent walls provide natural insulation, helping to regulate temperature and reduce energy consumption, ultimately contributing to a more energy-efficient home.

Conceals wall imperfections:  I love this particular reason from a practical perspective. If your regular wall has scratches or other problems, assuming it’s not structural or mold, covering it up with wood is a great solution.

Absorbs sound: Wood has natural sound-absorbing properties, which can help reduce noise levels and create a more peaceful and quiet living environment.

Easy to install: Wood accent walls can be relatively easy to install, either as a DIY project or with the help of a professional, depending on the complexity of the design.  Check out Etsy for wood accent wall kits. They’re easy to install.

Timeless: Wood is a classic and timeless material that never goes out of style, ensuring your accent wall will remain relevant and appealing for years to come.

Personalize it: A wood accent wall can be further personalized with unique patterns, wood carvings, or artwork, allowing homeowners to express their creativity and individuality in their living spaces. Just look at the examples above… so many options including different types of wood, colors, textures, installation methods and direction (horizontal vs vertical).

Vertically vs. Horizontally Oriented Wood Accent Walls

Both look great but there are aesthetic reasons to go with one or the other.  

A horizontal wood accent wall is a fantastic choice if you’re looking to create a more laid-back, casual vibe in your space. The horizontal lines can make a room feel wider and more spacious, which is especially great for smaller rooms or those with lower ceilings. This orientation also gives off a rustic, farmhouse feel, making it an ideal choice for cozy living spaces and bedrooms.

If you’re leaning towards a more modern, sophisticated look, a vertical wood accent wall might be just what you need. Vertical lines naturally draw the eye upward, giving the illusion of higher ceilings and making the space feel taller and more elegant. This orientation works wonders in rooms with high ceilings, or areas where you’d like to emphasize height and grandeur.