How to make lighted wall panels

Plain white walls, or even worse, ugly walls, are often something renters have to deal with. In this episode, you’ll see how to build decorative floating wall panels using inexpensive materials from the hardware store. They can be customized to fit any style or look using anything from paint and stencils to wallpaper or fabric and even incorporate decorative wall lighting with the use of rope lights. Not only will these floating wall panels add architectural detail to plain white box rental apartments, they will also provide just the right amount of mood lighting in the evening. It’s the perfect alternative to painting or using temporary wallpaper when you’re renting: it takes less time to do and you can take the wall panels with you when you move out!

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  1. Sal

    I really love your website and your awesome DIY projects!!! Please create more videos!!!

    My husband and I recently purchased a home with high ceilings (about 20 feet tall), and it’s been difficult finding wall art that’s affordable and tall enough to decorate without looking tiny. After looking at this video, I knew this is what we had to do!!! The instructions were easy to follow and fun to do. However, due to our circumstances we made a few changes:

    the tempered hardboard we purchased was a bit heavy, and we were concerned that glue wouldn’t be enough to hold it up, so we (carefully) nailed the hardboard to the furring strips. Luckily the wallpaper covered up the nail holes so you can’t tell.
    Instead of rope lights I found these LED strip lights on amazon (link below). The whole set, which includes a remote control, was only $17!! score!!

    We included a pic so you can see how it turned out. We love it!

    Another special shout out to your video on hanging mirrors. I always hated hanging anything on my walls because I would always end up making a million holes in the wall before I got it right. This was the perfect solution and I use it all the time!!!

    • Isabelle

      Hi Sal, Thank you so much for your kind words and for sharing a picture of your awesome project with me!I love the LED lights – it’s definitely an upgrade from the rope lights! And cute dog too!

      And I’m glad my mirror hanging tricks were helpful – I use them every time I have to hang something and it’s been a lifesaver for me too.

      Thanks for watching and I can’t wait to see what other projects you make!


    • zinal

      Hi Sal, I love your modifications to the original project. Can you please also share the wall paper you used here to cover the panels? I have similar situation as you we purchased a home that has high ceiling and very big 8’x10′ niches (3 of them in my foyer) and we are searching for budget arts to fill those niches.

      I am going to replicate as many projects from these website as I can. I loved Isabelle’s work and the tutorials are very detailed too.

      Thanks for sharing Sal and Isabelle…..!


      • Isabelle

        Hi Zinal, I love how we are all building on each others ideas to make our individual homes more beautiful 🙂 Isabelle

      • Sal


        Thanks for the kind words, and good luck on your project! This particular wallpaper is York Wallcovering Dimensional Effects – Fortuna. I bought it on Amazon and will post a link at the bottom of this message.

        I have to admit it cost a bit more than I originally planned on spending, but it looks AMAZING and it does create a really cool optical illusion. Most people don’t realize it’s a flat surface! Plus it includes over 30 ft of wallpaper, so not only was it enough for these panels, but I had enough left over to create some other smaller borderless panels!

  2. I love website because I have a small apt with no light in the living room and I’m always coming to your page and about four months ago I ran across your video and I said I have to try to make this it took me three months to save up to get the material I front got the material I had to boards cut to small so that cause me to delay it then I got it right the next time I had already order up all the stuff I wanted to use I painted my board grey and I use contact paper but I had to spread glue on the board cause the contact paper wouldn’t stick here is the finish project I just have to hand it on my wall thank you so much for doing this video please make more next I’m gonna try the drum shade



    • Isabelle

      Hi Arlene, Thank you so much for sharing your project with me, you did a great job!! Can’t wait to see your drum shade you make! Thanks again for sharing, Isabelle

  3. P.S I forgot to say I made Two Large ones and one small one

  4. Jennifer Holvoet

    How did you attach the lighted panels you made in this video to the wall? Did you do the same with the entryway panels?

    • Isabelle LaRue

      Hi Jennifer, the panels are not that heavy so I hung them like a picture frame. For the entryway panels, I used french cleat hangers like these: because the panels were going to have things hung on them (coats, etc). Hope that helps! Isabelle

  5. Garima

    Dear Isabelle,

    I love your decor ideas. They are easy to execute and the tutorials are well explained in your videos. Keep up the good work lady.
    Inspired by you, I have also made lighted wall panels for my renter space since my landlord did not allow me to either paint it or put wallpaper on it. I used heavy duty command strips to hang the panels on the wall.


    • Isabelle LaRue

      Hi Garima, Thank you so much for your kind words and for sharing your beautiful panels with me, makes me so happy to see that – keep on DIYing! with love, Isabelle

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