Nate Berkus' Stunning Feature Wall Idea Will Make A Small Room Look Grand

Celebrity designer Nate Berkus is a master at reimagining small spaces. Back in his "Oprah Winfrey Show" days in the early 2000s, Berkus continually tackled small dwelling challenges. For example, in 2002, he helped redesign a 319-square-foot condo from a cluttered shoe box to a chic living space with tons of storage. As the years have passed, he has only grown more adept at transforming small spaces, finessing ways to make limited square footage appear airy and grand. Most recently, one of his favorite tricks has been incorporating a feature wall to make the space seem bigger — or more specifically, a giant, antiqued mirror statement wall. 

Small spaces can sometimes feel uninspired or limited thanks to their size, but this statement wall creates a grand focal point that makes it feel memorable. Not only that, but the reflective nature of the mirrors creates the illusion of more space and light, making the area feel less cramped. But how exactly do you create such a statement wall in your home?

Create an antique mirror wall to carve out the illusion of space

If you have a room that feels tight and closed off, a mirror wall can help open it up. "Mirrors work with the light of a room, creating optical illusions and can make the room feel larger than it is," Berkus wrote in an Instagram post detailing the style hack. While you can achieve something similar by simply placing a mirror or two in the room, you get bigger and bolder results when you tile an entire wall with them. You can either cover the entire wall or, if you want to cut back on materials, tile the area between two large pieces of furniture or built-ins.

This isn't the first time Berkus has used this trick. He incorporated it into his own home designs in multiple locations. "An antique mirrored wall is one of my favorite statements to incorporate in a home, like we did in our previous NYC home's entryway and our current dining room," he shared in the caption. But that's not all. Berkus also has a similar mirror wall in his NYC powder room, which shows how this trick can make a small space feel huge. The glass is on the top half of a board and batten wall, making it feel double the size.

How to recreate the look

If you want to DIY this look yourself, you can source affordable mirror tiles from IKEA — specifically, the BLODLÖNN mirrors, which retail for $10 for a four-pack. To give them a weathered, century-old look, mix black, brown, and silver paint in a spray bottle you don't plan to reuse, and cut the mixture with 5 tablespoons of water. This should create a metallic-brown color. Shake the bottle to combine the mixture, and spray it across the entire mirror, paying special attention to the sides and edges. This will mimic how a real mirror ages. Once it's sprayed, dab the droplets with a paper towel. Let it dry for 5 minutes, and then drag a damp bristle brush across the mirror, blurring the paint into a faux-patina.

For an even more authentic look, consider grabbing a wax brush and adding textured dabs of bronze paint to the edges to create a rusting effect. You want to use a wax brush specifically since it is rounder than a normal paint brush, giving you a less streaky finish. You want to make sure each mirror has a different patina placement so it doesn't look overly manufactured. Allow the pieces to dry, and then hang them up to create your impressive accent wall.