Painting the Back of Built-ins • Living Room TV Wall Makeover

Last fall, you may have seen my fireplace renovation in our living room. If not, you can see how I applied a faux german smear to my brick fireplace here! I knew in my head that that was only part one of my living room tv wall makeover. Today I want to share part two where I am painting the back of my built-ins. I just love how it is all coming together!

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Before my Living Room TV Wall Renovation The Social Easel

First, let’s back up a bit. When I painted the fireplace with a faux German smear, I chose a crisp white chalk paint.

It was the perfect way to update an old red brick to fit the modern farmhouse look I have in my home. However, the existing built-in cabinets and shelves around the fireplace and TV were an off-white color. As well as the walls behind them. 

It always bothered me because I could see the slight color difference. 

almost done Faux German Smear Brick Fireplace Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

At first, I debated on what color I wanted to paint the built-in cabinets and shelves. I toyed with the idea of doing a dark gray that I was worried it would make the living room too closed-in. 

Ultimately I decided what I would rather do is an accent wall and paint the back of the built-in shelves. 

Now the decision of color! 

So many choices and so many different ways I could’ve gone. Many people would think to leave it light to keep the room open, but I really wanted to create a cozy and comfortable atmosphere in the room. 

All of our walls are a light gray with white trim. Everything was too neutral for me. I also wanted to have a bold statement while at the same time something of contrast. 

Paint Color for Deep Blue Gray Accent Wall The Social Easel

We chose this beautiful slate blue that I found at Home Depot called NYPD. I chose a satin finish, so it’s very low sheen but still easy to wipe clean. 

DIY TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

I’m not gonna lie. I was a little nervous about doing it just because it was such a dark color, but my theory is I can always change it if I don’t like it. Don’t let fear stop you from stepping out and trying something new! 

Testing the color to paint the back of built-ins The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

I started with the walls behind one shelf and immediately knew I was going to love it. I painted the first two sections, and Corey finished the other two up for me the next day. 

Trial of the dark blue accent wall color for painting the backs of built-ins on my TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio
Supplies for my painting the backs of built-ins on my TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio
First side finished! Painting the Backs of Built-ins DIY TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel

Once we finished painting all the backs of the shelves, we debated whether to paint the wall above the built-ins and ultimately agreed that it definitely needed it to give the TV wall a finished look. 

It really just completes the entire space. 

Complete Family Room Painting the back of built-ins around the fireplace on the TV Wall Makeover TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

I’m absolutely in love with it now, and it completely changes the feeling of our living room. It’s so cozy and welcoming, and I just love it!! I wish I would have done it sooner! 

Family Room TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

A few of my recommendations for painting the backs of built-ins:

  • Buy extra paint so that you don’t have to stress about running back for more, and you always have extra for touchups.
  • Be sure to paint two coats allowing them to dry completely between. Dark colors especially need two coats, but honestly, I would do the same with all paint. You want a nice solid coverage for a smooth finish.
  • Tape off your edges to make it easier on you! I love Frog Tape.
  • If you tend to be messy, you can always cut up a brown paper bag to use as a drop cloth and to tape up around the inside of the shelves.
  • Use a small roller for painting the backs of built-ins, or anything in tighter areas like this so you aren’t bumping into things. 
  • Use an angled paintbrush for the edges.
Love the Final color! painting the back of built-ins The Social Easel Online Paint Studio

This bold-colored accent wall was just what this room needed!! Want to know how I decorate all those shelves?! Check out how I decorate them for fall with all my favorite paintings HERE!

I hope my living room TV wall makeover inspires you to try something new and bold in your home! Paint is the easiest and cheapest way to update your home quickly!

Blue Accent Wall Family Room TV Wall Makeover The Social Easel Online Paint Studio