Perhaps the most neglected aspect of one’s home, it’s been a long journey from the garage’s solely utilitarian origins to the elite destination it is today.
No longer a mere carport and/or receptacle for discarded household flotsam & jetsam, the garage has taken on an identity of its own in recent years, acting at intervals as a studio, gym, and recreational space–and sometimes all three.
If you’re looking to upgrade your own garage space but aren’t sure where to start, what better place to begin than with the very walls themselves?
A personally selected garage wall is curated to suit the needs of the individual, with every imaginable style and material at his disposal to craft the garage of his dreams. From wooden wall mounts equipped with hooks and pegs to hang tools and gear, to painted and polished metal facades, your garage can be treated like the extension to your home that it truly is. Whether you desire more storage space or simply a more inviting interior, these top 70 best well-crafted garage wall ideas can make all the difference where comfort and inhabitability are concerned.
One’s home is something to be proud of, and in such a realm there is no such thing as inconsequential space. Your garage is more than just a place to park your car and let years’ worth of debris pile up; it has the potential to become a retreat and place of recreation, an escape from the rigors of daily life. Beginning with the wall of your choice, your garage will surely become your preferred destination in no time.
1. Old World Garage Wall Ideas
Sometimes it only takes one accessory to spruce up your garage wall and nothing does it better than an antique sign. Better yet, get yourself a retro Italian sign and let it handle the design work for you. Pairing vintage signs with richly tinted wood trim or moldings can turn simple drywall into something out of Tony Montana’s man cave. Dark wood paneling or faux stonework also work to accent those retro accessories.
The darker accents you would use serve to highlight your accessories, so beyond just retro signs, you might consider utilizing flashier tool chest-style cabinetry against your garage wall. Whether you choose racing red or muted steel-style cabinets, either would make an excellent combination with the darker tones of your wall.
Old world-style garage decor really has no limit – if you can find old car accessories, then you can make this work. Old steering wheels, car hoods, and even tires can be mounted on walls to add character. Use lighting to draw it into focus.
One of the great things about this design is that it never goes out of style. Repurposing old car parts, signs, pictures, or decals to use as decoration creates a talking piece for your buddies.
2. Sports Enthusiast Garage Wall Ideas
Love sports? Of course you do. Why not pay homage to your favorite team and devote some garage wall space to them. When it comes to sports themed design, the options are endless. Paint your team’s logo on the entirety of the wall or cover it with memorabilia.
Don’t have a favorite team? Find some retro photos of guys playing your favorite sport. Think old school put-up-your-dukes-style boxing pictures from back in the day.
It’s your garage, so why not boast a little bit? Display mementos from your own glory days on the gridiron – team photos, trophies, or even framed jerseys.
No matter what accessories you choose, be sure to display them properly. Lighting your wall properly with directional display lighting will help feature your wall better.
Lastly, don’t overdo it. Resist the urge to show off every last award or autographed pictures of players from your local minor league baseball club. If it’s too busy, it’ll make your wall an eyesore instead of a focal point.
3. Industrial Garage Wall Ideas
Like the industrial look? You can outfit a garage wall in a variety of trendy ways using materials that you might just have lying around your garage or shed.
Utilize some steel or aluminum diamond plate as wainscoting. Use old extension cords and affix them to exposed bulb fixtures – safely, of course. Try old steel or copper piping to create shelving with repurposed boards – the opportunities are endless.
Industrial vibes typically mesh with neutral or darker colors, although not exclusively. Using tool chest-style cabinetry or an unfinished steel workbench can really make for an eye-catching space. Paint here is optional. You can try corrugated metal or even brick if you are feeling risky.
Other small features can make your industrial-style garage wall pop. To go along with your exposed metal accessories, you can add heavy-duty switches and receptacles in conjunction with metal conduit.
If you like having everything exposed, then an industrial garage wall is for you. It gives off a rugged, worn-in look while still making it a place where people will want to hang out.
4. Retro Racing Garage Wall Ideas
A garage is a great place to hang out, but at the end of the day, your garage is a home for your car. Why not stick with that theme and go all-in on the car theme to dress up your garage wall? Retro racing ideas can take many different forms. Some enjoy outfitting their garage wall in the colors of their favorite racing team or vehicle, whether that be Ferrari, Ford, or Bugatti.
This often involves painting a wall with a racing stripe or two, in addition to a couple of different colors. Create a two-toned wall using a chair rail to break up your colors. A white rail accentuates the color above and below.
You can also add to your retro racing theme by getting some old-school collectibles like Le Mans posters, a Porsche neon sign, or antique steering wheels that you can mount on the wall. Car manufacturers typically produce some really attractive signage so try to locate one and feature it on your wall.
When you devote wall space to a specific automotive theme, you may end up designing your whole garage in the same way. You can also purchase different types of floor panels or finishes to match the color scheme of your walls. Create a racing flag floor to finish off the effect.
5. Modern Garage Wall Ideas
Modern ideas for your garage wall typically involve clean lines and a minimum of accessories. For garage owners who want a welcoming space but don’t want to spend too much time fixing it up, then this style is just for you.
Create a modern garage wall using some neutral-toned paint. Combine that with simple pre-fabricated cabinets and a steel worktop. Trim out your wall with a subtle accent color and you’ve got your modern garage wall.
Remember, modern does not imply minimalism – that’s a whole different style. You can accessorize your wall, but keep it understated. Kitting out your garage in racing paraphernalia is not modern – it’s all about making the most out of your space to get that sleek, uncluttered, racing look.
If you want a modern approach to your love affair with, say, Harley Davidson, then put a couple of old-school Harley signs on the wall and call it a day. Paint your wall black or grey and include cabinets of a contrasting color.
Modern garages are ideal for guys who want a functional and tidy looking space while maintaining a hip look for visitors.
6. Classical Garage Wall Ideas
When you think of classic cars, what do you envision? A Coupe de Ville or a Mercedes Gullwing? How about a fastback Mustang or maybe a Bel Air? All these cars have common features, such as smooth, distinct lines and timeless shape.
Much like those cars, a classical garage wall has the same features. Creating a classical garage starts first, though, with color. As far as garage walls go, classic colors will be the ones you might find on those cars. Whatever color you choose, make sure it is bold and memorable.
Use lighting to spruce up your wall. In-wall lighting or retro ceiling fixtures that match your color scheme can make for a more welcoming space. Find some pictures of classical cars to line the wall and you’ve got yourself the beginnings of an excellent shed wall.
Alternatively, doubling up your garage wall as a tool receptacle works well, too. Get some old pegboard and paint it to match your color scheme. Add some old tools and vintage racing gear to give the wall some more character.
7. Rustic Garage Wall Ideas
If you like rough-hewn lumber, then maybe it’s time to turn your garage wall into something more rustic. These designs begin and end with wood – the older the better.
Find some old paneling or barn boards – some guys even use pallet wood – to make yourself a wall. Alternate size and color to create interest.
You can also use the same style of wood to make a more uniform look, that’s your choice. Wood with nail holes or other imperfections are fair game. They make for a more worn look that some people may actually pay for.
Combine your wood panels with stressed steel components like old siding or roofing, even a little rust is fine as it varies the look of the wall. Use it as wainscoting or as part of a shelving or cabinet unit.
Metal accessories such as wire shelving work well in a rustic garage setting, and solid wood tabletops, benches, shelving, trim, or other features should also get some consideration here.
Don’t worry about your wood not matching, that’s the point. If it’s old and weathered, it will all come together. Just don’t try to match painted or stained pieces – try to find lumber that has a natural look for the best possible rustic garage wall.
8. Minimalist Garage Wall Ideas
Similar to a modern garage wall look, a minimalist garage wall isn’t going to cause you to lose too much time in the way of labor. However, getting the right minimal look isn’t easy. There is a big difference between ‘unfinished’ and ‘minimal.’
First, you are going to need to declutter your garage. Minimalism is all about Marie Kondo-style removal of stuff. Then you’ll need to choose a color and go with it, but keep it subtle. A subtle color, in this case, would be some sort of beige or cream.
Then you can add a centerpiece or two. For a minimal garage wall, you might just add one vintage car picture or neon sign. That would tie in the entire space and create a focal point while emphasizing the clean space of the rest of the garage.
Cabinets and shelving would be consistent but not all over the place. A bank of cabinets along the bottom of the wall and one bank on the top is good, but keep them all the same size. Like the walls, the cabinets would be of a neutral color to complement the walls.
Garage Wall FAQs
What’s the best type of paint for my garage walls?
There are a lot of good latex paints on the market today, but for a rough and dirty setting like a garage, you can’t beat good old fashioned oil paint. It’s tougher and easier to clean grease off of.
I love my car but I don’t want the walls to match its paint. What color should I paint my garage walls?
This depends, especially if you have a favorite car manufacturer. Blue represents Ford, Bugatti, and other French cars. Red represents most Italian cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Alfa Romeo. British cars like Mini, Aston Martin, MG, and Austin usually use British Racing Green. Finally, if your preference is for German race cars, they’ve been known to wear silver or unfinished sheet metal over the years.