Years ago, one of my friends had the most exquisite gallery wall going up her stairs. I’m super picky. I hate gallery walls where there’s a gap that’s bigger between some pictures than others, or it’s not perfectly even on the wall. It’s just really irritating to me. So when I saw hers, I thought “This is what I want!” I asked her to tell me how she went about doing it and she shared her tricks with me. I have to say, it worked like a charm!
Here’s the steps to how you can make a perfect gallery wall. First, I found a of different frames. I went to Hobby Lobby to their clearance section and found a bunch I loved. I didn’t care about the color, I was just looking for interesting frames with different textures. I have to say that I tried resale shops, Goodwill and Salvation Army but no luck. So clearance at Hobby Lobby was still a great deal. At this point, I also needed to know what pictures I wanted in them so I could find the correct sizes. Nothing is more irritating than coming home with an 8×10 frame and realizing I needed an 11×14! Also, I tried to find chunkier 5×7 frames and skinnier 8×10 and 11×14 frames so they would have a similar overall size, even though the pictures were different sizes. I thought it would look awkward to have some tiny frames and some huge. Can you imagine a skinny 5×7 frame with a super chunky 11×14? It would look really off in my opinion!
I took them home and spray painted them all black and distressed them.
At this point I needed to add hanging hardware to them because a lot of them didn’t have it. Go figure!
Then, I inserted the pic into the frame. This is really important so you know the orientation for the frames when you’re designing you layout. I started playing with it, laying them all out on the ground and trying to figure out the best way to organize them. I read once that it’s best to visually make a rectangle with the outside of the frames and arrange them within that. I liked that look, with a bit of offset in the upper corner, so that’s what I did.
Also, I was putting mine above a long side table kind of piece. So I measured that to have an idea of the amount of space I wanted it to take up. After I got it the way I wanted it on the floor, I took a bunch of pics so I would remember what went where…and I texted them to all my good friends who would honestly tell me if it looked like junk!
Then I measured the height and width of the entire floor collage so I could center that on the space where I was placing it. I also measured the entire space where I was hanging them and decided how much space I wanted above and below the gallery and also on either side. I didn’t want to get them all up and realize it was way too high or it wasn’t centered on the side table. I traced each frame onto a paper bag and then taped those onto the wall where the collage was going to be. I knew the dimensions from my floor layout, so I taped the corner ones on first, after I measured. I also used a level, because I thought it would drive me batty to see them two inches higher on one side. Then I filled the middle ones in front there. I removed and retaped until it was absolutely perfect. Then I began removing one at a time and hanging the corresponding picture in it’s place. (Please excuse the grainy picture. I was taking it at night looooong before my blogging days).
I have to admit that once I got them nailed and hanging, some of them were a little off, so I had to move the nails a bit to get them to my liking. If I ever take it down, I’m going to have to fill a ton of holes and repaint for sure! If you have any questions, please let me know. I’ll be happy to help if I can. I know this is a bit involved. Honestly, I had the frames ready to go for months and didn’t do it because I was afraid to pull the trigger. But I promise if you spend the time to really plan it out, you won’t regret the finished product. If you decided to do a gallery wall, I’d love to see your finished product!