Gallery walls are a really popular home decor element right now and I have to admit – I LOVE THEM! As a graphic designer and a lover of all forms of art, finding a whole boatload of photos and art, mixing them together, and spreading them out on a wall appeals to me in a big way. When we moved out of our little Garage House into Our DIY House, I finally had the wall space to try my hand at creating gallery walls and it’s official: I’m a total gallery wall addict. I’m foaming at the mouth to do more! Today, I want to share with you some things that I’ve learned so far about planning and hanging up a gallery wall, some gallery wall tips, and some gallery wall layout ideas. I also had an idea to create some printable artwork packs in my Etsy shop that you can download and create your own instant gallery wall in a snap! I’ll share the details below.
I’ve fiddled a lot over the past year and a half with gallery walls (virtually with my graphic design software and in real life in our house), and here are some tricks that I’ve learned to make a really great looking gallery wall:
- Lay your gallery wall out on paper or on your computer first.
You can collect the picture frames you have on hand already to be extra frugal, and then make little cut-outs to scale with paper and move them around to come up with a visually pleasing arrangement. You can also draw boxes to scale on a computer program and do the same (I use Adobe Illustrator). I’ve tried both laying my frames out on the floor and fiddling with them AND cutting out life-sized pieces of paper that matched the sizes of frames I used and I found that doing a smaller scale version on paper/computer worked much better for me.
- Then, fill in the holes.
I’ve designed gallery walls with frames I’ve had on hand AND with things I’ve purchased, and all times I’ve had “holes” in my design that I needed to fill after I came up with a pleasing arrangement. You can fill in these holes by buying more smaller frames + art, OR (my favourite) using fun little 3D items like vintage keys, fabric banners, clocks, mini wreaths etc.
- Fill the frames with varied art and media, but have a common theme.
Once my gallery wall is laid out, I fill in the frames & holes with art. Sometimes I’ll already have the art planned out for the frames, and sometimes I will have a blank frame that I choose art for after I designed the gallery wall. The latter is fun because I can then choose art that matches the rest of the pieces. I like to use various textures (flat artwork, 3D things, fabric, wood) and styles of art (illustrations, typographic prints, paintings, photographs) but it’s good to have a common theme to tie everything together. You could have a common colour scheme or a common style.
- Hang the gallery wall with Command Picture-Hanging Strips.
These babies are your best friends when it comes to hanging up a ton of art on your walls. You won’t have a gazillion nail holes, and they are really strong. Just make sure you install them properly according to the directions, and also make sure your piece of art has enough of a backing to hold a Hanging Strip. I’ve found that some clocks and thin picture frames need a nail.
It’s apparent that I REALLY love symmetrical gallery walls, but I’m working on some asymmetrical gallery wall layouts for other spots in our home. I think asymmetrical layouts are really pretty too.
The trick with asymmetrical gallery walls, I find, is to anchor the layout with a center piece and place artwork around it:
This is a design I’ve come up for a rustic & natural farmhouse gallery wall, and I’m selling all of the customizable downloadable artwork in my Etsy shop so that you can make one like this too! I think it looks lovely as-is, but look how much more interesting this gallery wall looks when I swap out some of the flat art for 3D items:
Here’s another idea for this gallery wall with some different elements:
I’ve also designed this customizable instant gallery wall art pack with more of a vintage industrial flair:
Here it is when I swap some art out with fun 3D elements:
Buy ’em: Vintage Industrial Family Instant Gallery Wall, Vintage Style Black Skeleton Keys S/5 on Ring, 12″ – Rustic Brown – Metal – Battery Operated – LED – Lighted Letter “S” | Gerson Wall Decor (92687), DecoMates Non-Ticking Silent Wall Clock with Roman Numerals
Here are a couple of other pretty Amazon finds I came across that would make lovely gallery wall additions:
I seriously CAN’T WAIT to hang my next gallery wall in our home! I’m thinking it will be based on my rustic farmhouse gallery wall asymmetrical design.
Have a lovely Wednesday & happy DIYing!
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