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Unleash your inner artist

From the Resene colour inspiration – latest looks gallery

Who said you had to be an artist to paint all over your walls?

The trend in hand-painted wall murals is for a relaxed, anything goes, freehand style including small painted features that meander over your walls to sections of colour, doodled lines and curves that move across spaces from wall to floor, wall to wall or wall to ceiling. Gone are the days where you needed to fill the whole wall for the work to be finished. All you need is a small collection of Resene testpot colours and a little imagination.

Hand drawn organic shaped mural
Word hello entryway
Tropical flower mural
Cityscape mural
Wallpaper and paint floral mural

Organic shapes

Take a small organic hand-drawn sketch and then blow it up massive on a wall, wrap it around a corner and onto the floor.

For this mural we wanted a soft palette of organic shapes overlaid with a dark outline. We took our inspiration for the organic shapes from rivers and lakes, weaving through the landscape cutting through hillsides and down into valleys - like a topographic map.

Organic shapes hand drawn mural
Organic shapes hand drawn mural
Wall painted in Resene Rice Cake, mural painted in Resene Soothe, Resene Haystack with outline in Resene Noir.  Accessories: Del Mar Sideboard in White Oak & Brass; Arch mirror; both from Me and My Trend. Milligram Form light, Father Rabbit. Marble Soap dish; La Bruket Body Lotion, Citta.
Details Test pot inspiration
Test pots inspiration Hand painted details

Planning your mural:

Plan out your mural on paper to test out how all your colours are looking together. Draw out your organic shapes and work out all the proportions of each colour you want to use. To make the painting process easier make sure you start with the lighter colours first and then overlay the darker colours. Testpots clockwise from top left in Resene Noir, Resene Rice Cake, Resene Haystack and Resene Soothe.

  1. We painted all the walls and floor in Resene Rice Cake.

  2. We then freehand drew with a pencil our organic shapes, working from our sketch to figure out where the lines overlapped and moved from the walls to the floor.

  3. Next we painted the main corner shape in Resene Soothe, painting the outline of the pink first and then filling the colour in.

  4. Repeat this process with Resene Haystack winding up from the floor onto the walls.

  5. And finally finishing the mural off with the thin black outline in Resene Noir, which overlaps the other colours and ties the mural together.

If you have a floor that can be painted, let the mural fall from the walls onto the floor, like a pooling effect. This emphasises the organic feel of the mural and plays with the idea of space - the mural wraps around the corner and onto the floor, breaking up the hard edges of the corner with these free flowing organic shapes.

Resene Noir

No watering required

Bring nature indoors with this optimistic shoot.

Painted leaf wall mural
Painted leaf wall mural - with accessories
Wall and floor in Resene Despacito. Mural painted in Resene Moccasin, Resene Shabby Chic, Resene Dapper and Resene Artemis.  Accessories: Feelgood Designs rattan chair, from Backhouse. Heavy linen cushion cover, Moroccan shopping bag; Citta. La Tribe Luella sandal, Father Rabbit. Hat, stylist’s own.

How to:

  1. Paint wall and floor in Resene Despacito.

  2. Make leaf shaped stencils by drawing large and small leaf shapes onto foam board. Cut out using a craft knife and cutting board.

  3. Measure how high you want your top and bottom leaves to be so that it fits with the furniture placed in the room. Use a pencil to trace around the bottom and top leaves.

  4. Draw in the base stem (free hand for an organic look).

  5. Fill the remainder of the space with a mix of different sized leaves.

  6. Once you think you have enough leaves you can start painting. We started by painting the largest leaves, using a small brush to paint the outline of the leaf over the pencil - then fill in with a larger brush. Wait until dry and apply a second coat.

  7. Paint the main stem and outline over some of the larger leaves. To emphasise the organic look and to get the feel of an artwork we let our paint drip on selected leaves. We also altered the outline to be varied over some of the leaves, not always following the outline but being free with the linework.

  8. Step back from your artwork and see if it looks balanced, the colours and composition. Use the stencil of smaller leaves to fill in any gaps, then paint these in.

Resene Despacito

Resene Shabby Chic

Resene Dapper

Resene Artemis

Welcome home

Make your entranceway a real welcoming space by creating a text mural that greets you (or your guests) on arrival.

You could create a stencil and paint this directly onto the wall but if you don’t want it to be so permanent, maybe you want to change up the messages or are in a rental property, you can also use foam board and attach to the wall.

Word mural entryway Mood board for hello mural
Mood board Hello - wall mural in entryway
Mockup: Testpots from left in Resene Gordons Green, Resene Rainee and Resene Alabaster. Mural: Wall painted in Resene Rainee, door and ‘hello’ painted in Resene Gordons Green, skirting painted in Resene Alabaster. Accessories: Arch mirror; Oak Counter barstool; both from Me and My Trend. Iringa Woven Basket; Grid Hand Woven Linen Throw; Grow white pot plant; from Citta.

Planning your mural:

Test out your colours by painting letters cut out of foam board and then hold them up to the wall to work out placement.

  1. Choose a font and word that you want for your welcome home mural.

  2. Print out letters at the size that you want them, cut out and draw onto 3mm foam board.

  3. Using a cutting board and craft knife cut out each letter individually.

  4. You can either use these foam board letters as a stencil to trace around onto the wall for a permanent option. Or if you are looking for a temporary mural idea instead of painting directly onto the wall, cut the letters out of foam board, and attach with 3m wall strips.

    If you are using the temporary option, blutack® the foam board letters to the wall to work out placement and spacing, when you are happy with this trace around each letter. Paint around the letter in Resene Gordons Green and then fill in. You will need to do two coats for these darker colours. Or paint each letter in Resene Gordons Green, once dry attach to the wall using 3m wall strips making sure the letters are evenly spaced.

Make your entranceway a real welcoming space with a text mural

Tropical paradise

This hand drawn mural is inspired by a bird of paradise flower.

Testpots for your mural
Bird of paradise flower mural
Mock-up: Testpots clockwise from bottom left in Resene Atlas, Resene Red Herring and Resene Dreamtime.  Lounge: Wall (left) in Resene Rice Cake, (right) in Resene Dreamtime, mural painted in Resene Atlas (green) and Resene Red Herring.  Accessories: Lila Ottoman in Forest Green, from Me and My Trend. Linen cushion cover, Citta. Led Lantern; The Flower Expert book; Urban Sanctuary book; Spectrum book; all from Father Rabbit.
Bird of paradise mural
Bird of paradise detail

Planning your mural:

Create a little mock-up of your ideas on card before committing to the real deal.

  1. Paint the entire wall in Resene Dreamtime and let dry.

  2. Draw the outline of your mural with a pencil, don’t worry about trying to make it look like a perfect plant or flower, the idea is that it is organic and somewhat abstract.

  3. Fill in the whole mural with Resene Atlas and let dry.

  4. Work over the outline and create various width lines around the mural in Resene Red Herring, to add some spice.

Resene Red Herring

Resene Dreamtime


Enjoy a city skyline in your lounge.

Created in a deep hue, you can add hints of an accent colour to suit your colour palette.

Dramatic cityscape mural
Cityscape mural with accessories
Wall painted in Resene Poured Milk and floor in Resene Indian Ink. Mural painted in Resene Indian Ink and Resene Sorbet.  Accessories: Ombra Pendant Light; Linear Two Tier Sofa Table; Dixon leather handbag; Citta. Yamazaki tower rubbish bin in white; Veja vegan sneakers; Scent Of Home candle; Diary; all from Father Rabbit. Sunglasses, stylist’s own.

How to:

  1. Paint your wall in your chosen colour using two coats, allowing dry time between coats.

  2. Plan your design on paper.

  3. Measure how high you want your highest and lowest buildings to be and scale your design to your wall. Use pencil to mark the corners and edges of buildings.

  4. Using masking tape, mask out the building shape.

  5. Paint your main colour using two coats, allowing dry time between coats. Remove the masking tape before the paint fully dries.

  6. Mask the areas you want to add accent colours, and paint in your accent colour using two coats and allowing dry time between coats. Remove the masking tape before the paint fully dries.

Resene Poured Milk

Resene Sorbet


Combine wallpaper and paint for a new take on a wall mural.

Wallpaper and painted wall mural
Wallpaper and paint flower mural with accessories
Wall painted in Resene Aura and floor in Resene Despacito.

How to:

  1. Plan your design on paper and decide the scale you would like them on the wall.

  2. Apply your chosen wallpaper to 3mm foam board. Once dry, cut to your desired shape.

  3. Paint foam board in your chosen colour/s, using two coats of each colour and allowing dry time between coats. We used Resene Poured Milk. You could use additional colours if you wish.

  4. Add the black edging with Resene All Black.

Resene Poured Milk

Resene Aura

Resene Despacito

Styling by Amber Armitage. Photography by Melanie Jenkins, Flash Studios. 2019

Colour inspiration - latest looks gallery

Get inspired with colour and the latest decorating and colour trends! Select just the right look and mood for your space.

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Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.

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