Neal's Home Remodeling and Design Blog

Wall Niche Design Ideas for Displaying Artwork and Collectibles

Posted by Neal R. Hendy on Tue, Jun 24, 2014

Architectural design is important when planning a remodeling project. Structural details create expressive interiors and reflect the homeowners’ interests and lifestyles. If you enjoy the beauty of a painting or sculpture, or if your passions include collectibles, how might you display them in your home? A wall niche may provide the ideal solution.

A niche is a recess in a wall designed for display. Niches are often arched. A niche can be added to almost any area of a home. Wall niches can be used for display and aesthetics, or they can add a space for functional storage such as in a kitchen or bath.

Below are examples of how wall niches have been incorporated into remodeling project designs for several of our customers here in the Greater Cincinnati area.

Artwork Displays

The art we collect is always a personal statement. We choose pieces because of form, colors or an emotional response the work evokes. The piece may have special meaning if it was found on a trip or if you have a connection with the artist. Art is meant to be displayed and appreciated.

Family room niches. One of the best places to display a piece of artwork is an area in your home where people gather.

family room wall niches

Art can be fun like these paintings of wine glasses displayed in niches of a lower-level family room. When displaying paintings it’s very important to consider light exposure because direct lighting and the heat from bulbs can cause the pigments to fade, this is especially true for prints, watercolors and colored pencil drawings. The lights used to display the paintings in the photo are placed outside of the niches.

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ledgestone wall niche

Niches in family rooms can be integrated with storage cabinets. This wall niche, that displays a piece of pottery, was formed from ledgestone.

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ledgestone wall niche detail

Lights to showcase the pottery are set into the arch with handcrafted wood interior trim.

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Hallway niches. A wall niche can be placed in a hallway so that all who enter a home can view a painting or sculpture.

hallway wall niche

An arched niche located in a center hall provides a place to display a carved statue. A torchiere floor lamp was strategically placed in the space to light the niche in the evening.

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arched hallway wall niche

A lighted niche in a hallway was designed to reflect light onto a glass sculpture and display its beautiful luminous colors.

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Collectible Displays

As a child did you gather seashells, unique stones or sports cards? Many of us enjoy collecting items of personal interest. They help tell our story. Niches can provide a place for these special and precious items.

Curiosities. Unusual items we like to collect create memories or inspire our imagination. It’s fun to create displays that we can talk about.

lower level wood frame wall niche

A wood framed lighted wall niche at the entry to a lower level living area displays natural items collected by the homeowners along with a family photo.

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Creating a mood. Placement of art and collectibles can set the tone in a room.

lower level square wall niche

This lower level bar area provided a place for displaying hand painted Italian pottery pieces. The square niche displays a wine cask that is a focal point. It creates the ambiance of a Tuscan restaurant.

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Eclectic collections. Family members may have a range of interests and collectibles reminiscent of times spent together. A niche can be created to showcase a variety of items, related or somewhat unrelated but all meaningful to those who live in a home.

large wood framed wall niche

A wood framed large wall niche holds a collection of pottery, books, photos and a basketball.

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Sports Memorabilia. True sports fans often collect a little bit of history. Game balls, bats, hats, photos, bobble heads and other items, some which can have more than intrinsic value, need a place to be shown and stored.

lower level wall niches

Niches with glass shelves and cabinet doors display and protect items in this collection of sports memorabilia. Glass shelves allow light to pass through to fully display the contents.

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Figurines and glassware. Small figurines such as Hummels or crystal giftware like Waterford pieces have been collected for generations. These items need a safe spot if they are to be displayed because they are fragile.

wood framed wall niche

A wall niche, framed in wood, flanks a wooden storage bench with a hinged lid in a kitchen. The niche has shelves for collectibles.

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Topics: Design Trends and Ideas