Gallery walls are a great way to bring color and personality to any room, as well as provide an opportunity to display your treasured family photos and heirlooms. The tricky part is just knowing where to start and how to organize the works on the wall. If you’re thinking about creating your own version, we’ve compiled some simple steps to create the perfect gallery wall you’ve always wanted.
Start with Your Wall
Before heading out, measure your wall and think about how much wall space you want to cover. You should also consider what color your wall is and how artwork will complement or contrast with your existing palette. Is there furniture, like a sofa that is leaning against the wall or sconces that you’ll need to work around? Be sure to factor these in and allow some breathing room around them when creating a gallery wall.
Collect Artwork You Love
To begin building your wall, you’ll need to collect artwork that you love. Sort through the pictures you already own, go out shopping at local galleries and thrift stores or print out photos of friends and family to hang. You may choose one particular theme for all of your art, or you may go for variety. Grouping pictures together by color makes for an especially elegant look, but that’s just one example—do what feels right for your space!
Decide on Mixing or Matching Frames
There are two directions to go in when it comes to frames – you can either have them all be the same metal or wood, or you can mix and match with multiple different types of frames. To make your decision, start by considering your art. If your paintings are abstract or impressionistic, then go ahead and add some flair by mixing and matching different shapes, materials, and textures of frames. If your art is a series of coordinating photographs or prints, then sticking with matching frames will be best to keep a streamlined, sleek feel. Remember that not everything needs to be in a frame and not everything needs to be 2D art – you can put textural objects, plates, and other personal items in your gallery wall if you like.
Plan Your Layout on the Floor
Before starting your gallery wall, sketch out your plans on paper. Next, lay out all of your works on the floor in the exact positions they will be in on the wall. This is the easiest way of visualizing how the wall will look. You can see if the works look symmetrical and make adjustments as needed before drilling any holes. We recommend placing the largest works first as the anchors and going in order of the next smallest and so on. Take pictures of the different arrangements you are considering and decide among those.
Time to Hang
At the most basic level, you’ll need a hammer, nails, hanging hooks, a measuring tape, a pencil and a level. Measure out exactly where you put your nails and mark with the pencil. Make sure everything looks good before doing the hanging.
Once you’ve finished putting up your gallery wall, take a few minutes to step back and take in all your effort. Do all of your pictures feel cohesive and in balance? If not, tweak it until you love how it looks. Keep in mind that your style may change over time and that you can always switch pictures around or take out some works and replace them with others.