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  • Writer's pictureSophie Baylis

Paint Ideas - how to paint a scallop wall

Updated: Mar 20, 2022

If you wish you were more creative with colour but aren’t sure where to start, why not try the feature wall trend which is currently taking over instagram? With over 1,100 posts tagged #scallopwall on Instagram, this new trend is quickly becoming the top trick to give your walls a new lease of life in the blink of an eye! Marianne Shillingford, creative director of Dulux, tells us how to achieve the look.

📸 @banish_the_beige_ uses Dulux Heritage in DH Blossom and Potters Pink.


What you’ll need

  • Emulsion, in two favourite colours

  • Round plate

  • Large piece of thin card

  • Scissors

  • Coloured chalk, string and drawing pin

  • Spirit level and ruler

  • Masking tape

  • Small foam radiator roller

  • 1” or 2” good quality acrylic paint brush

  • Artists brush

Step by step

  1. Paint the wall in your chosen background colour.

  2. Make your own scallop template by drawing round a plate onto thin cardboard (craft card or old cereal packets taped together are perfect). Position the plate so half of it sits on the top edge of the cardboard and aim to draw at least 3 scallops in a row.

  3. Cut them out neatly so you have a continuous scallop shaped template. Make two or three templates if you plan to use them as stencils

  4. Decide what height you would like the scallop detail to be and draw a straight horizontal line across the width of your wall with a piece of coloured chalk, using a spirit level and ruler to make sure it is straight. Apply masking tape along the the chalked line and paint with the scallop colour. Design note💡 use string and coloured chalk to create quick easy straight lines to follow. Cut length of string that is a little longer than the wall you are working on. Pull the string across the chalk a couple of times, so the string gets covered in colour. Make a knot at one end and put some masking tape in front of the knot. Measure and mark the height you want at either side of the wall and then stick the knotted string to one of the marks. Take the other end of the string and pull it all the way to the opposite mark, pull tight against the wall and then snap it to create the perfect horizontal line. Watch the video here.

  5. Use masking tape to position your template along the painted line so just the points of each scallop touch it. You can now either use it as a template to draw the scallops directly onto the wall and then paint in with a small brush or, use it as a stencil and apply paint directly over the stencil using a small foam radiator roller. Design note💡if you use a brush, make sure it’s a good quality acrylic 1” or 2” brush and if you use a roller make sure the paint is evenly distributed in the foam and its not overloaded or it will creep under the edges. Have a small artist’s brush handy to touch up any mistakes.

📸 @mcchills_nest uses Dulux Heritage in Pale Nutmeg, Pumice Brown.


If you have never done this before or a little nervous painting, have a practice on a piece of painted lining paper or a bit of wall you haven’t painted yet. “Practice makes perfect,” says Marianne. “No one gets perfect scallops without a bit of touching up at the end so don’t worry and just have fun."


Always planning the design carefully before starting. “Try to imagine how the whole room would look with the new feature. If you have a large space with high ceilings, placing the scallop line three quarters up the wall helps create a cosy feeling, bringing the ceiling down to envelope you," Marianne explains. "If you’re working with a small space, opt for placing the line in the middle to avoid making the room feel smaller. Painting the skirting boards in the same shade as the bottom half also helps maximise the space you have.”


A more subtle way of using the scallop design is around a door or along the top of the skirting board where it’s a fun little element that will make you smile every time it catches your eye!



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