About half of the United States of America was knocked off their sofa two weeks ago when we all heard Joanna explain, “I want to build a pony wall Chip.” If you were like myself, I was questioning if my TV had interference or if the self-proclaimed HGTV designer had lost her marbles. After all these episodes of demolishing half and full walls to create newly renovated open concept homes, she was actually going to add not one but two pony walls to the home. Well, needless to say it worked out but not after a few changes to her original concept. Originally she created a half wall that was intended to have glass windows above that would extend to the ceiling. This design concept was to create a separate space for the homeowner to have an office and laundry area apart from her living space. After deciding against the original plan, the wall evolved to a lower pony wall that was completed with open modular shelving units above. It worked perfectly. Did she prove us all wrong? Maybe? Joanna created an open-air room divider that still created a sense of flow without giving an abrupt stopping and starting point that was anchored with a pony wall.

So here is the deal. Don’t go building pony wall or half walls. It is not a trend that we are going to see progressing unless you live in a mid-century modern home. The supposed origins of a pony wall confirm its name: it is a short wall that was added to stable for ponies. As modern architecture has evolved over the years we have seen these walls coming down and more open living happening. By the way, this is one of design elements that has made DIY and renovation shows so popular over the last ten years.

If you feel that you absolutely need this pony addition to your life, I believe you can successfully incorporate it if it transitions into the architecture, materials, and overall space. However, really think twice. I would much rather see a full wall or no wall separating a toilet in a bathroom. It is much easier to create a low bookshelf to separate a space instead of an actual pony wall and it is much more modern. If you already have a pony wall and have would like for it to transition it into your space gracefully, try wall covering a main wall in your space and continue it onto the pony wall.

David Brown
Mulberry Seed Design