5 Ways to Make a Focal Point in a Room

Every room needs a focal point. The focal point is the star of the room. It sets the design mood for the room. It gives the eye a place to land when you first walk into the room. When a room doesn’t have any focal point, it lacks focus and your eye doesn’t know where to land.

Some focal points are natural as part of the home’s architecture like a stunning fireplace, windows, high vaulted ceilings or a drop dead gorgeous view.

If you have no natural architectural feature, you can create a focal point with an accent wall, or stunning artwork.

5 ways to create a focal point in a room

1. A fireplace or architectural feature

A fireplace, a nicely aged brick wall, beautiful windows, high vaulted ceilings, stunning columns for example are all features of a home that make a natural focal point and/or starting as your inspirational piece. Some homes come with this feature already built in whereas with others you can add this feature. A basic builder fireplace with no mantel or feature pieces, can be created into a stunning focal point by adding these features. Similarly, a plain ceiling can become an inspiring architectural feature by adding natural beams in the ceiling. It takes some planning and creativity to create these features that will not only look stunning, but will add value to your home.


The above room has both a beautiful fireplace and ceilings beams as architectural focal points in the room. Notice how the fireplace is the primary focal point, with the beams painted the same color as the ceiling becomes the second focal point. These two focal points complement one another, not compete with each other.


This fireplace above, was anything but a beautiful focal point. The previous fireplace actually creating a negative focal point in the room. Read fireplace transformation makeover

The secondary focal point in this room is the stunning view outdoors with the home backing on to protective green space. The furniture arrangement allows both focal points to be featured.

2. The View

People purchase homes because they want to surround themselves in an environment they find soothing or stimulating.  Some people gravitate to natural surroundings like an ocean, lake, forest or mountain, while others like being the center of a busy city and enjoy a beautiful skyline of a city.

If you are fortunate enough to have a stunning view from your living room, family room or bedroom window, this will automatically become the focal point of your room.


Photo: The Lilly Pad Cottage

I absolutely love this picture above from the Lilly Pad Cottage. This rooms checks ALL the boxes. The stunning lake view, the high vaulted ceilings, with the stone fireplace being the centre of the seating area. Notice how she used a low back sectional so as to maximize the lake view? A great choice in furniture selection!

Photo: HGTV.com

Nothing beats an amazing view like a lake view, beach, mountain, forest or some other awesome natural view. If you’re fortunate enough to have one of these amazing views, you want to arrange the furniture in order to captivate these awesome focal point of your home. The homeowners here would have be wise to place a sectional couch that face both the gas fireplace and the lake view with smaller accent chairs instead of the love seat that currently sits in front of the window.

Read: 5 Designer tips when decorating a room

3. A stunning piece of furniture or an accessory

If there is not an obvious focal point like a fireplace, view, or architectural feature, like a beautiful piece of furniture, light fixture, a hand woven carpet, or a grand piano, there are many ways that you can create a focal point. Beautiful handwoven rugs, sculptures, baby grand pianos and other stunning pieces of furniture can also be the focal point.


There is no doubt, that this stunning ceiling chandeliers above, are the focal point of each of their rooms. Every piece of furniture & accessory in this room was selected to keep all eyes on the lighting.


The stunning chandelier, mirror and fireplace all have your eye focused on this spot. Unfortunately the stylist blocked the focal point with furniture lol. I’ll talk about this styling mistake in the blog post below.

Read: 5 Mistakes Homeowners make with their furniture

Photo: Wayfair.com

This room above has a couple of focal points with the beautiful view outdoors, but the real show stopper here is the stunning oak flooring in a herringbone pattern. Its subtle but elegant. Notice how the furniture is trending but neutral in order to highlight the beautiful flooring, the highlight of the room.


In a bedroom, the bed automatically becomes the focal point of the room as the starting point. It doesn’t mean that you can’t have more than one focal point, keep reading, but its the first focal point you will see. In our bedroom picture above, this beautiful bed with a gorgeous picture above creates a stunning focal point.

Photo: Wayfair.com

This dining room above has no natural focal points, however the stunning chandelier, and the metallic accent wall with the gold mirror creates a mood for a nice romantic evening at home. The two lamps on the sideboard detract from the chandelier and mirror. It would have been better if they were not on the table. There is a such a thing as over accessorizing a room.

Read: 5 home styling mistakes to avoid when decorating a room

4. An Accent Wall

If you don’t have an architectural feature, or not enough height in your ceilings for a stunning light, there are many ways you can create an accent wall.  A bold contrasting paint color, wallpaper or add a material like wood, slate or leather tiles. These features are all very popular right now in home décor and can be dressed up or dressed down to suit any house style or homeowners tastes.


This fireplace has become a stunning accent wall because of the homeowner’s design by creating a beautiful surround around the fireplace and a stunning vertical wood accent feature on the left side of the fireplace. In many newer homes, quite often the builder slaps in a gas fireplace with no mantel, feeling they did their job by adding a fireplace in the first place. However, creating an entire accent wall around a fireplace makes this a beautiful feature of this living room.


Adding wood strips to create an accent wall is a relatively inexpensive DIY project that can look amazing if executed well. Especially when painted in a bold color like we see above.


This accent wall created by Spanish Designer, Mario Mimoso is absolutely stunning against this grass wallpaper.


Wallpaper is making a comeback and its comes in different styles that would fit any taste and style. Even the discerning tween above in this tween’s room makeover. Wallpaper also is now available in easy peel and stick tiles that are not only easy to apply, but removes the dreaded nasty job of removing wallpaper once the style is no longer popular.

Read: Skateboard Themed Bedroom Makeover

5.  Artwork

Artwork is the easiest and least expensive way to create a stunning focal point in a room if you don’t have a natural one like a fireplace, stunning view or some other architectural feature that makes a powerful statement.  Artwork can be one piece or a combination of more than one but it needs to make a powerful statement in order to be the focal point.

Photo: Nelly G/Getty Images

This room uses bold artwork and dark bold walls to make a dramatic focal point. Even though there is an amazing view outside, the designer created a beautiful accent wall that compliments the style of the room and the windows but painting the accent wall a calming blue, highlighting bold artwork that is a similar shape to the window on the far right of the wall. An excellent execution of a well thought out design plan.


This meeting room above, is the poster child on how to create a focal point in a room without any natural features in a room that you can draw upon. From the stunning funky ceiling light, to the cool gray textured wallpaper accent wall with the oversized black & white large photos this room is pulled together in an effective and creative way.


In this minimalist design style above, the artwork is bold and still compliments the design style of the room.


There are many ways to create a gallery wall as the focal point of the room. You can create one using photos of your trip, family, or just photos you love. In this Boho styled room above, the stylist created a beautiful gallery wall using the colors in the room to grab one’s attention.

There are equally a number of ways to create these gallery photo walls with a symmetrical look or asymmetrical as above. No way is right or wrong, but the accent wall should reflects the room’s design style like we see above.

Read: What are interior design styles and how to I pick one for my home?

When a room has two or more focal points!

Quite often, a room can have two or more focal points like a fireplace and an amazing view. How do you handle this? TV’s can be considered a focal point in some cases, although some designers would argue that TV’s are not focal points. Whether they are or not, they do need to be taken into consideration in the room’s furniture placement consideration. Alot of it has to do with what the focal point is, where it is and which one you want to emphasize. In some situations, you may one to emphasize one focal point over another, whereas in other situations, you can accentuate all of them.


In our photo above, one could say that this room has too many focal points. The beamed ceilings, stone fireplace and the matching back accent wall with stone, not to mention the dark windows highlighting the stunning view outside. Fortunately the designer has coordinated all the focal points with colors that compliment one another so that the focal points do not compete with each other for color. On the other hand, your eye does bounce around a bit trying to find a landing place. Notice that the furniture is very neutral, almost boring in this room because it needs to take a back seat, get it? lol, to the many focal points in the room.


This living room also has many focal points. The fireplace, windows directing outside to an amazing view, beamed ceilings with gorgeous lighting and of course the beautiful fireplace. The stylist decided to block the fireplace in this design, focusing on the beams and the windows as the focal points to show. As the fireplace here, compliments the room’s colors, another option would be to not have any furniture in front of the fireplace to show off its beautiful style, or choose neutral ottomans in front of the fireplace for additional seating but not too distract or block the fireplace.

When there are two or more focal points, its wise to highlight one, but also to style the other focal point to have each one work well together and not to compete with one another.


Does this sound overwhelming? I can help you with that!

You’re not happy with your current living room, bedroom or office. It’s dated.  It’s not working for your family anymore.


You have some ideas but you’re not sure where to start or how to pull it all together.  Some or all of the furniture needs replacing but you’re not sure what to replace and with what. Regardless, you just need a change and need some help and guidance.

Taking into consideration your design style, personal preferences and wishes for your room, you will receive:

  • you will receive 2 mood boards with my recommendations of furniture & accessories based on your photos & questionnaire that you sent me 
  • floor plan using the furniture & accessories as agreed upon and links to recommended furniture & accessories that you may purchase
  • paint color recommendation + trim based on questionnaire & furniture and accessories choices
  • recommended repairs/renovations of the room
  • unlimited messaging
  • you will receive a follow-up e-mail to go over any questions you may have.  Making sure you’re happy with your consult is important to me.

Check out my Room Makeovers e-design consult here


I help busy homeowners, just like you, to style their house to make it a stunning retreat, where they can live and enjoy their home.

Hi! I’m Debi Collinson. Designer. Color Consultant & Real Estate Investor. 

I conducted my first color consult at the age of 7 lol for my dad. I grew up looking at blue prints, going on construction sites and helping my dad, an Engineer|General Contractor and Co-Owner of a Design|Build|Engineering firm pick out paint colors for his buildings. Since 2006, I have been helping hundreds of clients to homes to make them look like they belong in a magazine page whether the client is styling to stay or staging to sell. 

In my spare time, LOL, I buy “fixer uppers” to fix up & either sell for a healthy profit or to rent. I’m currently looking for my 10th “fixer upper.” Sign up to receive my e-mails of how to make your home stunning, how to pick the best colors for your home, and how to add value to your home all at the same time! Check out my full bio including credentials here.

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