How To Create a Focal Point That Commands Attention
 

Today we're spilling the beans on one of the most fundamental points of design: the focal point. Why are focal points so fundamental? They draw attention to the room, they establish flow and cohesion, and they impact furniture placement. Whether you have one or want to create one, we have all the details you'll need to create a focal point that WOWS!

 
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Whatever the room, identifying a focal point is probably the most important task. Ask yourself this question: What is the first thing that draws my eye? It might be a window, a fireplace, a TV, a wall—but it can't be all of the above. One focal point is all you need. There's no room for competition.


Working with an Existing Focal Point


Many rooms already have a pre-existing focal point:

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Fireplace

Brick, stone, or tile, a fireplace is a great focal point for any room. Placing your furniture around it gives a cozy and inviting feel to any space.

Windows

Bay, casement, or picture, a good-sized window draws the eye to the natural light and the seasonal landscape outside. Any window provides you with an ever-changing piece of art.

We love adding custom drapery to a large window. They frame the window perfectly, which complements the look of the window as well as the view. Drapery is one of our favourite ways to add colour, pattern, and a cozy flare to a space.

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Architectural Elements

Arch, high ceiling, exposed brick, wood beam, or winding staircase, an architectural element can be a captivating focal point.

Built-In Shelves

Several features contribute to making these shelves the focal point: we arranged the furniture symmetrically to accentuate the shelves, we hung a piece of statement art above the fireplace, and we accessorized the shelves to complement the statement art.

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Wood Beams

One of our favourite surprises is when we walk into a client's home and see stunning structural wood beams in the ceiling. Our design gears start spinning as we dream up all the different ways we can accentuate them. The beams' texture and natural wood tones create warmth in a room, but they also draw the eye upward and add height to what might be an average-height ceiling.

 

Creating a New Focal Point


Many rooms do not have a pre-existing focal point. But fear not! Creating one isn't difficult, and it can be much more fun:

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Accent Wall

Adding an accent wall with paint, a mural, wallpaper, or even panelling is a great way to add a quick—and dramatic—focal point.

Painted Accent Wall

In this space we created a focal point with a striking accent wall of deep blue paint. We added to the focal point with a custom upholstered headboard, and we just had to take it one step further by hanging the oversized art.

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Mural

Go one step beyond wallpaper and install a large-scale mural that takes up an entire wall. This type of focal point isn't for every space, but you shouldn't pass up the chance to make a statement.

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Wallpaper Accent Wall

For this bedroom we chose a strong print with subtle grey hues and just the right amount of silver metallic to create an accent wall in our clients' master bedroom. When they also opted for the bold custom-upholstered headboard, we were so excited to see their reaction to such a breathtaking focal point.

DWK Interiors

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Furniture

A colourful and/or oversized piece of furniture is another great solution for creating a focal point. A stand-alone one-off piece will immediately draw the eye—for example, a tall, impressive headboard or a four-poster bed like this one doesn't just draw the eye but captivates it.

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Light Fixture

Often overlooked as a focal-point option, a captivating light fixture will always draw attention. Placed over a dining table or smack dab in an entryway, a bright light statement is the epitome of "go big or go home." The fixture must stand out in some way—either from its size (large) or its structure. A statement chandelier in a master bedroom is suitable for royalty, because that's how we treat our clients. 

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Artwork

Sometimes all a space needs is a stunning piece of artwork. Art becomes a focal point when it's the first thing you see upon entering a room, so you must position it perfectly. Your choice of art is endless: one large canvas, a collection of smaller canvases, a wall decal, a tapestry, a metal sculpture, even a mirror. The colour and drama that artwork brings to a room can't be denied.

This is from a clients bachelor pad in Mission, you can see how we transformed the space here.

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Television

TV. Yes. There it is. The television has certainly become a staple in most homes (dare we say every home), and it won't disappear anytime soon. A TV as a focal point can still look great with a little extra consideration (i.e., don't just dump it on a TV bench). Consider placing it inside a beautiful cabinet or on top of a bookcase. It could even be the centrepiece of a gallery wall.

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Focal Point Quadruple Threat

Architectural panelling, oversized art, dramatic paint colour, and statement furniture? Wow!

Studio McGee

Which focal point do you think creates the most impact in a space? We'd love to hear your thoughts in the Comment section!