Painting faux windows to brighten up your basement family room

Are there rooms in your house that feel a bit claustrophobic? You can open up the space almost immediately with a decor of  “faux” (“fake” in French) or “trompe l’oeil” (deceiving the eye) windows painted on your walls, bringing the outdoors in!
In this example, I painted a mural with two windows,  in a large, dimly lit family room in the basement, used by children and adults for playing games or watching movies.
Background for painted "faux" windows

Background for painted “faux” windows

I started by drawing the silhouette of the windows that I masked to paint the moldings around the window opening, mimicking the real existing ones. I always used the “Frog tape” that does not let the paint bleed through the tape and it leaves a very clean edge. I used high grade Benjamion Moore latex opaint.
Blocking the silhouettes of two trompe l'oeil windows.

Blocking the silhouettes of two trompe l’oeil windows.

Then I painted the window frames.

One sketched window with window frame painted

One sketched window with window frame painted

The following step was to draw and paint the window sill and the exterior walls framing the windows. Once completed, I blocked them with tape and started painting the countryside landscape surrounding the house: its pond, the old farm and the wonderful hills.

Two trompe l'oeil/faux painted windows

Two trompe l’oeil/ faux painted windows

The last step was to block the opened window frames to paint the reflection of the landscape within the window panes. Once finished, the windows became the focal point of the room while expanding/linking the latter to the outdoors.
One faux painted window with neighboring landscape and pond

One faux painted window with neighboring landscape and pond

This “trompe l’oeil” (“fool the eye” in French) not only brought fun and warmth but also a relief to an otherwise closed-up room.
One faux window with neighboring old farm

One faux window with neighboring old farm

In children quarters, you could also paint cute monsters peeping through the windows or other fun animals! Any theme could be amusing and would literally open up your walls. Here’s another idea, perhaps for my next project: a round opening to a Chinese garden or a succession of doors and hallways to perfect a trompe l’oeil effect.
Here at French Designing, we are always helping clients with these types of projects and many others. If you have a project you would like for us to help you with, please feel free to write or call!
Thank you and good luck with your next project!
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