12 Unique Ways to Fill the Space Above Your Sofa

From vintage collections to simple DIY art, check out these creative ways to dress up the big, empty space above your living room sofa.

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May 12, 2015

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Amy Bartlam

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Getty Images

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: SuzAnn Kletzien

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Photo By: Jacob Snavely

Photo By: Rustic White Photography, LLC

Play With Symmetry

If you've got a large mirror and classic oil paintings, then why not group them together?
Get the Look: Play with symmetry and scale by centering an oversized mirror directly above the sofa, then flanking it with similarly scaled art.

Repurpose an Area Rug

Handed-down tapestries have been a wall decor mainstay for centuries. Add a similar look to your living room with an area rug.
Get the Look: Choose a rug that's the same length as your sofa (or slightly shorter). For a custom look, use a quilt hanger and attach the rug to its clamps. Or, for a DIY approach, fasten the rug to the wall using upholstery tacks and allow it to droop in the center for a more relaxed look.

Perfect a Sofa Table

Here's a smart idea for renters or homeowners with walls that can't take nails or screws: place a console table behind your sofa to display your favorite artwork.
Get the Look: First, determine the height and length of your sofa. Next, search for a console table approximately one foot shorter in length and no more than two inches lower than your sofa. Create a collection of art, arrange it on top of the table, then lean it against the wall.

Paint Your Own Artwork

Looking for the perfect piece of oversized abstract art but can't find exactly what you want in your budget? Create the art yourself with bold acrylic paint and a massive canvas.
Get the Look: For texture and a shadowed effect, pick up gesso then apply it to the canvas with a brush or burnisher before painting the entire piece a solid color. We chose the color Yves Klein Blue, which was made famous in the 1950s by the French painter who often covered entire objects and canvases with his trademark hue — a mix of blue, purple and black.

Embrace the Boho Trend

Boho-chic style is making a huge comeback this year. Incorporate this laid-back trend into your current design aesthetic by hanging a large, handmade macrame statement piece above the sofa.

Let Your Vintage Flags Fly

Bring a casual and collected look to your living room with a suspended grouping of vintage flags.
Get the Look: Gather nautical flags in similar colors that vary in size and shape. For each row of flags, add two hook eyes to your walls and fasten aircraft cable in-between. Next, loosely hang the flags on the cables, and secure them in place with twine or clothespins.

Map It Out

When paired with a black leather sofa, a large, sepia-toned vintage map gives this room an upscale, masculine feel.

Turn Wallpaper Into Artwork

Add the look and feel of wallpaper to your living room without the commitment.
Get the Look: Order a single roll of wallpaper for less than $20, cut it to size and place inside several frames. For a larger impact, stick with oversized frames and keep the pattern repeat consistent.

Mirror Mirror

Easily sourced from local thrift stores or antique shops, vintage mirrors add gorgeous depth to a small space. Choose a mix of gilded and matte-painted frames, stunning starburst and oval shapes, and varying sizes for an effortless designer look.

Ditch Nails for Wooden Hangers

Many collectors find themselves with groupings of objects that can be difficult to hang on walls or require expensive mounting, matting and framing. We have a chic alternative.
Get the Look: Take the DIY approach by clamping beloved posters, pennants, maps and charts to wooden pants hangers, then hanging them above the sofa in a random order.

Basket Wall Art

Add a pop of natural texture and handmade detail to your space with a tight collage of large woven baskets. Get the Look: Choose round baskets in varying sizes and patterns for a visually-stunning arrangement.

Turn Art Into Your View

Here's a trick made popular by urban designers: if you don't have a lot of wall space in your living room, consider hanging your artwork directly in front of windows. This is an especially useful tip for windows that don't offer beautiful views. Not only will this help add personality, color and charm above your sofa, it can also create an extra layer of privacy between you and your neighbors.

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