Home » DIY » How to Paint an Arch on a Wall

How to Paint an Arch on a Wall

As old becomes new again, the architecture nooks and doorways of 1930’s and 40’s are in a revival. in all kinds of ways from construction in doorways nooks and in trim to painted accents. It’s easy to DIY the curve of this new painted arch trend and paint an arch on a wall with a few simple supplies int his step by step. A painted arch creates a nice focal point in a room and adds style. It can even be used as a painted headboard and a great way to use up extra leftover paint to create a room accent.

Dark olive green painted cabinets

(This post contains affiliate links)

I decided to add one into my new home studio space to really add some dimension and interest to the plain white walls. It was pretty easy and I wanted to share how to paint an arch accent wall. If you’ve missed the earlier posts about converting our garage into a studio space, you can see that in this post.I decided to add it right over the painted cabinets. I thought it would add some nice drama and make the converted garage seem not so “garage-y” especially since I am going to be spending a lot of time in there. Plus, it makes plain wood floating shelves that were going to be installed seems a heck of a lot cooler than just some plain lumber on a wall. In painting the wall, You will see me climbing and painting on my cabinets, and I will advise you not to do that. I am a trained professional. As a short girl at 5’2″ tall, I have had a lifetime of properly learning how to climb on cabinets to get to the highest one to find the hidden chocolate and grab the “good” plates we use once a year.

You can watch this video to see the process, or skip to the information below for how to paint an arch accent wall. Find painting supplies here.

Measuring base for arch wall

Painter’s Tape can be helpful in marking out where your arch should go

Painter’s tape can help visualize where to place your painted wall accent arch. I started by measuring my length of cabinets and then marking the center point of the top of my arch. Luckily, I did it in pencil because I mismarked the first time and my arch became an off-center half circle. Thank goodness for re-do’s. Where the top of center of your arch is is going to be one of the most important measurements.

Use a pencil and a piece of string to create the top of the arch

This pencil and string technique would be use to create the arch itself.

If you want to to a more “doorway” taller style of arch with straight lines on the side, use painter’s tape and a pencil to mark out your vertical lines from the baseboards up.

Then use this string method way of marking it from the top to make the half circle/arch shape part. For a taller arch, use a straight edge spirit level and painter’s tape to create a more door frame style of arch.

Use a string to trace out your arch for your arch accent wall

Place your length of string and measure it from the center to your widest point

After marking my center, I placed a thumb tack push pin in the center of my mark (You can use a nail or painter’s or masking tape to hold your string in place if you don’t want to put a hole in your wall, but it won’t be as accurate), and tied cotton string to it.

I led the string to the far end of one side of the cabinets and tied a pencil on that end so it lined up with the edge of my countertop (or floor if you are starting there.).

From there, I carefully used the pencil on the end of the string to make the “arch” keeping the string taught, but not so tight that it pulled out of the wall.

After I videoed the project, and posted it on Facebook, people not only commented on how my shirt matched the wall (that was totally unintentional), but wanted to know how I got paint on my arm. I always end up with paint in random places when I do a project. It’s like a special talent. All I could think is why do I clench my butt so much when I paint? Maybe sweatpants wasn’t the best choice. 🙂

Jennifer Rizzo painting an arch wall

Use a paint brush and a steady hand to paint in your arch edges

After I traced out my arch, I painted it in with my cabinet color, using a angle paint brush to trim it out and then a small paint roller to fill in the center of the arch. It took a few coats of paint and and used the base wall color paint to touch up any stray marks outside of the arch.

Painted arch accent wall in dark green wall paint

A painted accent arch makes a striking room focal point

After It was dry, we hung open shelving in studs with sturdy L-brackets. I opted to have the shelving kind of “follow” the arch and did an 8 foot shelf on the bottom and a 6 foot shelf as the top shelf. They are just common boards on the brackets and cost about $40 total to make them. I painted the bottom of the L-brackets the same as my wall color so they blended in.  The best part was when I could put all of my pretty supplies on them (The ugly stuff went into the cabinets.)

Paint L brakets the same color as the wall to help them blend in

I styled those a little before we even had the storage pod unloaded. You know there are priorities. 🙂

OPen shelving in a painted arch wall

I’ll share my full styling post with you once we get the storage pod unloaded. We have our work cut out for us!

How to paint an arch accent wall easliy with string


Comments are closed.