Chevron / Herringbone Painted Wall Tips


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I have gotten some questions about our chevron / herringbone patterned wall, and how we achieved the look, so I wanted to share my method with you. Unfortunately, it came before the blog, so I didn’t take step by step photos. But, I will do my best to explain and illustrate the steps. So here we go!

1. Paint your wall. We started out with gray, since it was the general wall paint in the room.

2. Using a level, establish a straight, horizontal line across the wall. I used a pencil to lightly draw this line on the wall. This will become your guideline for the next step.

3. Now it’s time to tape your verticals. Our vertical lines are 18″ apart (edge to edge). Start with taping one vertical line, again using the level to make sure it’s straight. Using the horizontal guideline you drew in the previous step, measure 18″ from the edge of the first piece of tape, and make a mark on the wall. This will be the edge of the second piece of tape. Repeat this across the entire wall, again the important part to remember here is that the 18″ is measured edge to edge between two pieces of tape.

4. I know that long level was a bit of a pain, and made this wall time consuming thus far.  You can set it aside for a moment. Now it’s time to measure and mark along the verticals. I made each diagonal 8 1/2″. Measure and mark one piece of tape first. For the sake of this tutorial, I will call this Tape A. I started measurements from the center of the wall, because I wanted it to look like the pattern was centered, and not like it originated at the floor or ceiling. First make two marks on the tape A 8 1/2″ apart. Then a 3/4″ mark, then a 7″ mark, then another 3/4″, and then back to 8 1/2″. Repeat this up and down the piece of tape. These measurements take into consideration the 3/4″ painters tape I used. Each 8 1/2″ diagonal will be the contrasting color, in my case white, and then the 7″ sections will remain the general wall color, in my case gray.

5. To establish the angle of my diagonal, I eyeballed it. Line up a piece of tape with the markings you just made on Tape A. Create the desired diagonal by taking the other end of that tape over to the adjacent vertical tape. I will call this Tape B. You have your first diagonal!

6. Now, using this diagonal as a guide, measure and mark up and down Tape B. You are just making marks at this point, not taping any more diagonals.

7. Using the markings and measurements you have made on these two vertical pieces of tape, and the level, you can mark up the rest of the wall. You are basically alternating the measurements on Tape A and Tape B across the entire wall.

8. You are finally done with the level! Tape all your diagonals, using your marks as a guide.

9. This next step is optional. I put a tiny piece of tape in every diagonal that was to remain unpainted. Didn’t want to make any mistakes!

10. I think this next step is the most important. Taking the general wall paint, gray for me, paint each section that is intended to be the contrasting color. This creates a seal between the general wall paint and the tape, and will prevent the contrasting color from seeping under the tape.

11. It’s time to paint the contrasting color! I did two coats of white in each diagonal, and painted using a small roller and a brush for edges and corners.

Once the paint is mostly dry, I removed all the tape. Now stand back and admire all your hard work!

One tip, it can get a little tricky when you get to any of the edges of the wall. You can use a small level to measure vertically between the the last piece of tape and the ceiling, for example. Gray areas will be 7″ and white 8 1/2″, in my case.


I hope you found this tutorial helpful. Don’t forget to check out my facebook page and show some love by clicking ‘like’! You can also follow me on twitter and pinterest!


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