I love to decorate my home, you all know that. That love can create a problem, where to store all of the decor that I am not displaying at any given time. I like to change everything up for summer, fall, Christmas etc. All of the art that I had collected was beginning to take up too much space! It was stacked in piles in my basement storage room. I had planned on building a wall system to hang all of it down there, but my husband had a different idea. He suggested we hang it all up in our bedroom. Our master bedroom has vaulted ceilings and the walls have been difficult to decorate. Anything that I put on them seems dwarfed by the wall and ceiling height. We had thought about adding a bunch of wainscoting here but haven’t had the money or the time. The gallery wall might give us a similar effect, his plan just might work.
Creating a Gallery Wall
I brought up all of the art from the basement, whether I thought it might “go together” or not. Because the wall was so large, I only planned on using large art. I also believe that the larger the art pieces are, the easier it is to pull off a gallery feel. If you go to Z Gallery, their gallery walls are full of very large pieces of art and that’s the look I was going for here.
Then we tied a string from one side of the room to the other creating the top of the gallery wall. For this space, it ended up being just below the trim on the wall separating our bathroom from the bedroom and where the ceiling met the opposite wall. It was approximately 8′ 10″ off the carpet. Then starting from each end, we started hanging the art so that the top of teach frame touched the string. A laser level would work great for this too, ours broke so string it was.
I carefully filled in the pictures working from the outside in, then top down. If you look on the left side of the wall the three images are almost all the same size so they were pretty easy to work with. For all of the art I tried to keep about a 2″ space between them, unless it was a pair or set, then they were placed closer together making them appear as one large piece.
I did not group all of the pictures with their matches. I felt that it gave a better overall aesthetic to separate the large red and white magnolia prints to add balance to the wall.
I pulled a chair, table and lamp from my family room into the corner of the master bedroom. It does cover up one of the pictures, but it gives it a decadent quality knowing that each picture is part of the puzzle and almost makes you want to see that one even more. We use the chair all the time to put on shoe, read, or just relax.
For one of the pieces of “art” on the gallery wall I just put a frame up on the wall. It is an antique frame from my mother and it fit perfectly. To fill the center I added a corbel with a few books on top.
I love the depth and surprise that this unique display adds.
Here you can see how the line from the wall to the bathroom helped us determine the height of the gallery wall. We made sure to measure from the floor up and use a level to make sure we started off square. I was happy to notice how well the art that we have collected came together on this wall. It just goes to show that if you buy what you love, it will work together.
I also want to point out that when I was putting this wall together, I put our family photo in the center. This family portrait is outdated since my youngest child was not born until a year after it was taken. It is however, the same size as a flat screen TV that I would eventually like to place in it’s place.
Here is the view from the master bath. The great thing about a gallery wall is that you don’t have to display one piece of art on a wall, have it swallowed up or feel like you are trying to express your style in ONE piece. With a gallery wall every piece is important and the collections tells the unique story that is only yours to tell. When I look at my art all together I am reminded of trips taken, the beautiful family my husband and I have created, my love of history, nature and my Savior. Everyone’s will be unique.
Tips for Creating a Gallery Wall:
- Go big, don’t mess with anything smaller than 16″ x 21″
- Start at the top and then work in from both sides.
- Define your space (height, width)
- Keep the space between the art approximately the same
- Group pairs together and/or separate for balance
- Don’t be afraid to add texture with decorative 3D art
- Mix what you have to tell “Your story”
- Work with a friend, hanging all this art can be exhausting
- If you run out of art place furniture, a bookcase, trunk in front of a space to cover it up
- Be sure it is in a place you can enjoy looking at it