5 Steps to Creating a Gallery Wall

If you have ever wondered why some people get obsessed with Instagram and Pinterest, you are not alone. I would probably ask you to hi5 at this point if I didn’t feel awkward asking. Anyway, it’s an evidence among many other good examples that people are moved by visual cues. We humans draw doodles, graphs, we make albums and make gallery walls where we display whatever we like. This post is to share how I arrange my visual cues at home and the thoughts that are behind creating my gallery walls.

1. Common ground: When I make a gallery wall I try to arrange them with at least one thing in common like the frames, the materials, the type of artworks or pictures to give the scheme an unified look. That’s one way of looking at a gallery wall. The other way is being eclectic and not worry about uniformity because it works. Pardon my french but this exactly is “je ne sais quoi”. Oh, and I do not always want to alienate the wall from the rest of the room so I pick a colour, pattern, material or texture to match with something else in the room to make it look coherent. Too much matchy-matchy? Don’t worry, this is not a must.

2. A statement or a storyboard: I think if I want to tell the story of our lives with pictures of our graduations, work-life, our holidays and milestones of our child, or mementoes, the gallery wall is more precise than a photo album. That’s my storyboard of momentos in our living room with a brass curtain rail and flexible arranging options that match with other accessories. Let’s move on and communicate a statement with some modern calligraphy or equally expressive word-free artworks. I love things like chalkboard or boards that you can quickly personalise by doodling or writing to make it interesting everyday. I write over a few of them in this mirror gallery wall (pic below) with a marker that is easy to wipe off. Just the words “colour your dreams” are customisable. The rest are made with glass paints and outliners and nail polish.

3. Thoughts that count: Have you ever been to a family home which has lots of pictures of one partner and/or extended family members of one side only? I have. If you and your partner want to cut any connection or influence from your in-laws or your side of the family, go for it by all means but if it is your or your partner’s sole decision, take a moment to think. Is this exclusion making someone feel isolated and undermined or like a codependent who has less space allocated in his or her own home? If you want a family of equal rights, involve and include everyone.

4. Layers: Consider adding layers with colour blocking the background or placing one frame slightly over another on a floating shelf. Adding plants or other three dimensional objects in a gallery makes it more interesting and versatile but try to avoid 3D-pointed spikey-in your face objects in narrow corridors or stairways. It is annoying to play indoor obstacle course as adults every day. No offence.

5. How to: Now that we have sorted our paintings, prints, photos, artworks, tapestry, floating shelves or boxes, showpieces or plants, its time to arrange them however you like, with an off central piece(consider rule of thirds) or a central attraction. You can make a draft on a piece of paper to see how the objects will look together or you can place them on the floor to arrange before hanging. If you are still not sure how they may look, cut pieces of paper of the shape and exact dimensions and tape them on the wall. Once you are happy with the look, its time to hang them. If you are not interested to nail them to the wall, use command strips or command hook. I bought mine from Wilko but you can buy them online as well. Finally, do a spirit level while hanging to keep things straight.

Voila. That’s all. Feel free to comment below if you want to share what you have found worth considering when making a gallery wall.

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