White Walls Don’t Have to Be Boring: Here’s How to Spruce Them Up

White Walls Don’t Have to Be Boring: Here’s How to Spruce Them Up
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For her home, Homepolish designer Dana Frieling made an old adage her own: The family that designs together, stays together.

A home is a reflection of the person who lives there—or in this case, people. During a reimagination of her Dallas home that took a collective two years (she’s not one to rush into anything), Frieling acted as director while her husband and two kiddos weighed in as creative consultants.

Rolling up their sleeves and getting down to business, the whole lot of them turned what was a quirky ’80s shack into a bright and beautiful home. Check out their work (and their pug, Maverick) in the gallery.

Written by Matt Powell. Photos by Lauren Logan.

Homepolish is the go-to brand for home and office inspiration. With beautiful photos of only Homepolish-designed projects, a funny and irreverent voice, and an inexhaustible supply of design ideas from their talented designers, the Homepolish Instagram and online magazine are mainstays of original, informative, and creative content.

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What was once a plain white linen army cot gets pops of color with the help of accessories: graphic pillows, abstract paintings, and plants.

Photo: Homepolish

Dana Frieling and her family took a 1980s Dallas shack (think palm tree–studded wallpaper) and brought it to life. With four bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a total of 3,100 square feet to work with, Dana went with a less-is-more mind-set, stripping away the chintzy detailing of yesteryear and embracing light and bright Texan charm.

Photo: Homepolish

Dana says that their 15-year-old pug, Maverick, helps with every project. Now we know who the real brain behind the reno is! Despite his creative acumen, Dana points out that sometimes Maverick's fur got caught in the newly painted baseboards.

Photo: Homepolish

Adding a touch of glam, a gilt mirror hangs above the bed.

Photo: Homepolish

Why, yes, I would like to curl up and read all day!

Photo: Homepolish

Dana is an admitted DIY fanatic. The headboard is handcrafted from raw pine planks and framed in medium-density fiberboard (MDF).

Photo: Homepolish

Worn woven leather blends perfectly into a sunny nook. "Bringing vintage goodies into a minimalist, contemporary room" is a favorite for Dana.

Photo: Homepolish

Mod meets vintage in a bathroom. The shower is steel-framed glass, but that tub? It's a vintage find.

Photo: Homepolish

OK, OK, so there might be some throwback to that kooky palm tree wallpaper … but at least this tree is real!

Photo: Homepolish

As with most vintage finds, the tub was polished up and refinished. Now it really shines!

Photo: Homepolish

Before Dana and her husband got to it, the bathroom was completely mirrored—yikes! The rectangular mirror over the hovering vanity is the only remnant of that.

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As with any labor of love, Dana notes, "We have so much sweat equity in this house, it's unreal." Though with these calming details and vibrant greens, it appears almost effortless. Almost.

Photo: Homepolish

In the master bedroom, a black four-post frame makes a statement, but those chevrons on the rug … now those really steal the show.

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The black-and-white stripes on the HomeGoods bedding are mimicked in that stunning black canopy, painted right onto the walls and ceiling.

Photo: Homepolish

Quack! No home would be complete without some personal knickknacks. On her nightstand, Dana keeps a wooden duck and a cup of arrows, complete with a mini bow.

Photo: Homepolish

If you're sensing a theme, you're right on the money. Black-and-white graphics come into play on the bedding, ceiling, and floor too. But this time, it's accented with a mid-century tufted ottoman.

Photo: Homepolish

Like many designers, Dana likes to be "surrounded by beautiful images constantly." As of late, "beautiful" comes in the form of a stork painting sitting atop the vintage desk and chair set.

Photo: Homepolish

I spy another duck!

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Another opportunity to curl up in the Texan sun, this time in a large, overstuffed armchair.

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Can you ever have too many plants?

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Black and white comes into play in the guest bathroom with subway tile and a polished granite countertop. Loving the stark contrast!

Photo: Homepolish

Just picture Maverick, that designer-pug genius, scampering down these stairs.

Photo: Homepolish

"Graphic wall treatments are one of my favorite elements to implement," says Dana. "They pack a powerful punch and aren't seen in your typical house." In the entryway of their home, Dana and her husband crafted this all on their own from 1/2-inch-thick MDF. On the feature wall, it's in dramatic diamonds, but moving in either direction, it melts into stripes.

Photo: Homepolish

Dana, an ever-vigilant designer, is constantly on the lookout at flea markets during the daylight hours, and at night, she'll peruse the Internet for just the right piece. The utility cart that became the vanity in this bathroom was a Craigslist find.

Photo: Homepolish

Live-edge is a fancy word for rough, which is what this table is. I guess you could say it's a little "rough around the edges."

Photo: Homepolish

From that kooky, '80s-obsessed previous owner, Dana did allow one holdover: the vintage chandelier in the dining room.

Photo: Homepolish

Duck, duck, goose!

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At the dinner table, the family almost looks like they're floating on air … but it's just a trick of the eye! Acrylic chairs, updates of a 1960s design, seamlessly blend into the room.

Photo: Homepolish

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