Over the last few months, I have been working on a pretty epic accent wall in my home office space. I’ve been sharing little peeks and progress on our Instagram account, so many have seen this faux living wall coming to life (pun!). I completed it about a month ago and am finally ready to share the finished project with you. I’m going to show a little office tour soon but I wanted to also share how I made this DIY faux living wall in case anyone out there wants to add something similar (maybe a bit smaller though? this one is quite large) to their home or office. I actually think this would be really pretty in a retail space as well. I also think this project is great for any of you aspiring plant ladies out there who tend to kill more plants than you care to admit.
(Raises hand sheepishly.)
I’m just going to share how I made my wall, but there are definitely some things you may need to modify if you make this in your space. The two big factors that I think could make a difference is what material your wall is made of (I had drywall in my home, but if you had concrete or brick that would change things) and also how big the wall is that you want to cover. But here’s what I used and did for my DIY faux living wall.
-3/8 x 2 project (pine) board, enough to outline the top and bottom of the wall
-wall anchors or long drywall screws (depending if you have studs in the wall or not)
–hex netting (in the outdoor section, often used for chicken fences)
-staple gun + staples
–dark green or black pipe cleaners
*The amount of faux plants I would need for this was easily the thing that I had no idea about. It’s not exactly something you can easily measure. I knew the square footage of my wall, of course, but not how much coverage I would get from various faux leaves, vines, and other faux plants. So what I did was buy a LOT when they were on sale and I made sure the return policy would allow me to return any that I didn’t use. I bought all of my faux plants from Michael’s during a Memorial Day sale and I was able to use another coupon I had received in the mail. I bought about $800 worth of faux plants, even with the sale and coupons. (I know, crazy!) I ended up returning a little over $300 worth after I had finished this wall.
The other supplies (not including tools) cost $120. So in the end, this entire wall cost around $620 to complete. In case you’re curious my wall is about 90 square feet, although it’s a bit tricky to calculate exactly as it has a substantial slant and two windows. But hopefully this gives you an idea. I do think you could probably find even better deals on faux plants to decrease the cost. It’s not the cheapest project I’ve ever done, so I did want to warn you. 🙂 For me, it was totally worth it though because I LOVE how it turned out! But if the price tag scares you, I’d consider maybe making a headboard or doing a much smaller wall instead.
Step One: Line the wall with the project board. Basically the goal here is to create a trim on the top and bottom of your wall that the Astroturf and netting can be hung on. You could hang it directly into the wall but my thinking was this would add a little more strength and would be easier to remove later (I plan to keep this wall for a long time, but I know myself well enough to know I won’t keep it forever). Use wall anchors or drywall screws as needed, but do keep in mind that a good amount of weight will be supported by this by the time you hang all the faux plants.
Step Two: Hang the Astroturf. We simply hung up the Astroturf in long pieces and stapled to the wood trim we had installed (using a staple gun). Then we cut out the windows, one spot for an outlet, and large slits around a wall vent. If your wall doesn’t have any windows, outlets or vents, then you won’t have to mess with that as much. 🙂
Here you can see how we also waited to staple the bottom edge to the wood trim until after we had cut out the necessary spots.
Step Three: Add the netting. This we hung in strips over the Astroturf in the areas I knew I wanted to add plants, like over the seams. We stapled the netting to the top and bottom trim again, just like the turf.
Step Four: Add the faux plants to the netting. Many of the plants you can simply tuck or hook into the netting, but if it’s heavier or just wants to sag or pull away from the wall, cut a small amount of pipe cleaner and use that to tie the plant to the netting. Take care to make sure your pipe cleaner is hidden, so the overall impression is that it’s a REAL living wall. 🙂 I also tried using green floral wire for this step but ended up preferring the pipe cleaners because they worked just as well, but were easier to use and softer on my hands. I have a hunch they will also be easier to remove one day when the time comes.
Hanging all the faux plants was the step that easily took the longest. I probably spent about 10 hours total hanging all the plants. It’s pretty fun though! Like a giant floral (or plant) arranging project. Plus, I was listening to an audiobook the whole time, too.
As I mentioned, I’ve only had this DIY faux living wall in my home for about a month now, so I haven’t needed to clean it yet. I did have a lot of people ask how I would clean dust off of it and the real answer is “I don’t know yet” because I haven’t needed to. I have a few other faux plants in my home that I’ve had for years and none of them are super dusty, so it’s not a major concern to me (we have a lot of dog hair on the floor and rugs, but not much dust to speak of … don’t really know why on the dust, but I do know why on the dog hair. Ha ha). I had thought about just using a feather duster from time to time or maybe cans of air, like you use to clean a computer. But the cans of air probably aren’t great for the environment, so then I started rethinking that. Anyway, if you have any cleaning/dusting suggestions, I will gladly take them so I can try them out as needed! Thanks for letting me share. xo. Emma
P.S. Be sure to check out Elsie’s favorite faux plants here.