How to Paint Perfect Wide Stripes

A bold, wide stripe on the walls makes a dramatic impact.  Our foyer needed some pizzazz, so for an inexpensive fix (a can of paint) and cheap labor (me), I added a wide, 16 inch dark gray (Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze) horizontal stripe to the wall.  What do you think?

I wanted to break down the step-by-step for you in case you wanted to do something similar in your home.  Here’s the blank slate I was working with.
For this project, you’ll need:
  • Paint and paint tray
  • Small paintbrush or small roller
  • Large roller
  • Ruler
  • Leveler
  • Pencil
  • Frog Tape
  • Ladder


The first thing I did was paint the entire wall the original paint color, it needed several touch-ups anyway.  I bought Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray, which is the color I thought the wall was, but later realized it’s not.  Agreeable Gray is slightly more gray than the wall, but just barely.  I found this out when comparing the color to the adjacent wall.


First, measure the height of your wall and decide how wide you want your stripes.  We have a tall wall, 114 inches (not including the crown).  A 16 inch stripe meant 7.125 stripes, just about perfectly even.

Starting at the top, measure and mark in pencil 16 inches down until you reach the bottom.  Then, use a leveler to ensure you draw a perfectly straight line.
After drawing your lines in pencil, tape above and below the pencil line to indicate the area you will be painting.  To be extra sure I didn’t paint the wrong part, I marked an “x” in the area I was NOT supposed to paint.  Trust me, when you’re that close to the wall, it helps!
I then used a paintbrush/small foam roller in the original paint color all along the edge of the tape to seal it. If any of your paint bleeds through the tape, it’s the same color as the adjacent stripe!
I used Frog Tape and ended up using two strips of tape for each line, increasing the thickness of the tape in case I was a sloppy painter.
I only needed two coats of paint for full, even coverage.  As soon as I rolled the second coat of paint, I pulled the tape off.
The moment of truth!
Sit back and enjoy your clean, perfectly straight, bold stripes.
I ended up painting the light switches too, and they look good from afar, but not so great close up.
I’m especially digging the view from the dining room.
I hope this helps!  If you have any questions, please let me know and I’ll answer in the comments section.
Update:  I loved the stripes in the foyer so much that I continued them around the corner into the curve of our staircase!
keep in touch! 

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Meet Megan

Hi! I’m Megan, mom to a thoughtful teenager and spunky young girl. We call Houston home and recently moved into our dream home. I traded my lawyer hat to become a full-time blogger in 2010. I love sharing my passion for affordable fashion, home decor, organization, & fitness to help inspire you to take care of you!


  1. They Look absolutely perfect! I so want to do this in our entryway hallway, but have been a little timid about it. I might just have to go for it now! Thanks for the great inspiration and instructions! XOXO

  2. I'm buying a new house and stripes is definitely on my very long design agenda, so this is great timing for me! They look amazing. 🙂 So funny how some stripes can really make you so very happy. 🙂

  3. We have the same stripes in our home office! But the previous owner did them. Wasn't so sure at first. but they are growing on me! Great job. 🙂

  4. Great Job girl! This looks awesome. I was actually thinking of doing stripes in my bedroom for an accent wall & after seeing how easy it is, its a go!

  5. I LOVE it! I've been wanting to paint stripes for some time but have textured walls. Are you're walls textured? Wondering if the paint tape seal would work on textured walls? Thanks for the tutorial 🙂

  6. Hands down this is my favorite project you've done! This looks absolutely beautiful in your entry!!! Would you ever consider a brass or gold switch plate for the ones you painted since you're not liking them up close? I think that could be a pretty contrast but still fit…just a thought. I'm seriously in love though!

  7. This looks awesome. I'm just curious when do you find time to do these projects? I'm work outside the house with a 2.5 year old and I can't ever find time on the weekend to do anything around the house. Please share some tips of how you get this done with James around! I'd love to get some projects done at home!

  8. I LOVE it! I've been wanting to paint stripes for a while, but have textured walls. Are your walls textured? Do you think the paint seal on the tape would also work with textured walls? Thanks!

  9. I've been wanting to paint stripes somewhere in our house for ages, but have been totally intimidated. After seeing this I think I might try it in the guest room. Wish me luck!! 🙂
    Looks AMAZING!!!!

  10. It looks so good Megan! I love bold stripes! So impressive you tackled that yourself. I have been debating stripes for our new house but decided to move in and get settled to see how things come together first. LOVE LOVE them in your entry!

  11. So pretty! I definitely have to try this in our little boy's nursery as an accent wall. What paint finish did you use for Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze?

  12. LOVE IT. You definitely had the pefect wall to do this on, I have too many doors in my entry and this would be choppy and a nightmare to paint for me. I love the view you have from your dining room of the stripes. I would want to sit in there every meal just to look at the stripes, lol.

  13. Love the stripes! I just learned that same trick of painting with your original color before painting the stripes to prevent bleeding and it is the best. How did I not know this any sooner??

  14. Painting the original color on the seams to seal in the paint and prevent leaks is a great idea! I wouldn't have thought of that. I'm hoping to paint strips somewhere in our home soon. Thanks for the tutorial! -Emily @

  15. I love stripes and these look perfect in your entryway! I love your tip to seal the tape with the base wall color. We painted wide ombré stripes in our nursery ( and we used faux glaze to seal the tape lines. I've always used blue tape, but notice you use Frog Tape. What do you like better about the Frog Tape? I've thought about trying it but have been hesitant to switch, so I'd love to hear about your experiences!

  16. Love the wide stripes. I'm a big fan of stripes. I just did them in Ava's room and again in our half down stairs bath! Yours look awesome, and you're right from the dining room view so cool!

  17. I love how big and bold these are! SO good. And how cute and tiny do you look up there on that ladder?

  18. Oh my gosh — so so good!! Even better than I'd imagined! Love them from all the angles, and so fun from the dining room!!! well done, girlie!!!

  19. I did similar stripes for my baby's room and my gosh! It is a lot more work than you'd think! I really admire your ability to take risks with your already beautiful house. I think I'd be too afraid to mess it up, but they always turn out beautifully.

  20. This is such a bold and fantastic welcome to your entry. I love it so much and I'm DYING to get it done in my son's room. Thank you for the step by step WITH PICTURES..such a huge help 🙂

  21. i am going to buy my new apartment, and i am just crazy about the strips, a applaud your ideas and creativity, i intend to make such strips in my living area, they're elegant. i am enlightened to learn online painting in this way. excellent job!

  22. Great pointers!!!
    I painted bold stripes in my last house usinf beachy paint colours and it certainly added a fun look to my cottage-style home.!
    Your entrance looks amazing! I’m doing a bold horizontal stripe around my dining room so your tips will help me out big time!!!!

  23. Looks fabulous! Thanks for the tip on sealing with same color paint on tape. Doing tone on tone (semi gloss and flat in same color) on two walls in laundry room next week and this has helped greatly!

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