Alphabet Decor Spells High Style for Rooms

School is in session! My 6-year-old has started first grade, and ever since that time, we’ve gone from summer calm to classroom crunch in a rush. I am already battling heaps of newspaper — spelling tests, math homework, art projects and so forth.

In honor of this new school year, let us celebrate that most basic building block of professors: the alphabet. Like virtually every author, I have an ongoing love affair with those 26 letters in almost any type, font or mix. I will take any chance I can get to weave them into my house decor, from fridge magnets to box signals to die-cut letters mounted onto the wall.

Alphabet accents usually get relegated to nurseries, playrooms and other kid zones, but they look just as chic in grown-up rooms. Have a look at the typographic flair that they add to the areas below.

Varied fonts dance across this background, including a lively coating to the bedroom. It would work perfectly for a teenager but has sufficient sophistication to transition to maturity.

Ed Ritger Photography

Free-form alphabet letters meld to an abstract entire within this arresting piece of art.

Susie Harris

Increase your hand if you miss old-fashioned typewriters. Just me? OK then. Regardless, this take on clacking keys is an nod to nostalgia.

Rethink Design Studio

The vintage-look alphabet wallpaper within this space, set off by a midcentury-style floating cabinet, is just plain cool. It’s intense, so too much of it might make your eyes ache, but an accent wall or a powder room would yield only the right dose.

I am mad about this spin onto the gallery wall: a group of letters in various colors, designs and styles.

Alphabet art using a subtle message embedded in the kind looks anything but childish.

This bold chest recalls the days of movable printer’s type. It would be a clear choice for a home office or a library, but I’d also use it as a sideboard in a casual breakfast room.


Look closely: That’s an alphabet pattern on the rug within this glam Hollywood Regency–fashion space.

Schrader & Companies

A, E, I, O, U and sometimes Y — these twin alphabet prints bring that old grade-school mantra back to mind. And how cute are those umlauts at the end?

sarah & bendrix

So I cheated. This is a child’s room, but I am throwing it into the mix because those brightly patterned, crisp and picture letters are too pretty not to make the jump to one-hundred distances.

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