Stripes, that is. Here's a wall treatment that requires no artistic talent. Pull out a paintbrush, and make it happen.
Go for the Gold
Repeating elements always helps pull together a look. The wavy metalwork on the mirror plays off the freehand stripes on the wall.
| Credit: Laurey W. Glenn / Styling Leigh Anne Montgomery

Catch a wave of inspiration from this stunning master bath. Give bland white walls the Midas touch. It's an easy project to finish in a day.

Designer Kimberly Harper's Fayetteville, Arkansas, bath had all the right elements: cream cabinetry, custom window treatments, and glamorous light fixtures. Unfortunately, the walls weren't adding much to the mix. Now, ribbons of gold take them from blah to voilà!

Color Outside the Lines
To get the look, open a pot of gold. (Restrained Gold by Sherwin-Williams and Grand Canyon by ICI Paints are good choices.) Paint vertical wavy stripes around the room. There's no need to tape off perfectly measured stripes. You can do this freehand. Nervous? Practice on poster board first.

Choose a paintbrush that is the width you want your stripes to be. Dip the tip of the brush in the gold paint. Start at the top of the wall, and pull the paintbrush down, curving in and out. The paint will become thinner as you get to the bottom of the wall. Brush on more paint in bare areas to give the stripe consistent coverage.

Paint Pointers
If the wall isn't the desired background color, choose a shade of white in a matte finish. The flat finish allows the ribbons of gold to really pop.

For the stripes, use paint in a glossy or satin finish for extra shine.

For even more gleam, choose a metallic paint (most manufacturers offer shades of silver, gold, or copper). Or give any color a reflective sheen by topping it with a glaze, such as illusions Translucent Metallic Technique Finishes by Sherwin-Williams.

"Go for the Gold" is from the November 2007 issue of Southern Living.