Elevate your space with a personal gallery wall.
With their carefully arranged art, decor, and frames, gallery walls can fill any space with personalized vibrancy. As complementary pieces build off of each other, they create compelling movement, depth, and imagery. While there’s a common misconception that galleries only suit those who believe more is more, I have some great news: you don’t have to be a maximalist to get started on your very own gallery wall.
Designers often love gallery walls because, when done right, they can suit any design scheme, home, or aesthetic. A gallery can stretch across an entire space or be as simple as three strategically placed pieces. A traditional grid style, for example, features work or photos of the same size and from the same artist. Or, a French salon style features a sprawling plethora of floor-to-ceiling art and accents. No matter your approach, the arranged pieces strengthen one another and create a moment with as much (if not more) impact as a single piece, which can often fall flat.
A gallery wall is also an appealing design motif because it facilitates the display of your favorite art or photographs, adding a personalized touch to your wall. So often, clients have a stack of art they have snagged simply because it spoke to them, with no idea how to place it—afraid they won’t do the art justice. A gallery look is also a great reason to start an art collection or even frame some memorabilia if you don’t have a collection. Here’s your guide to getting started.
Gallery Wall Guide
Collect Complementary Art and Frames
A gallery should feel collected without feeling too random. To create cohesion, incorporate a couple of pieces along the same color schemes, mediums, shapes, and subject matter.
If you’re going for a traditional grid style, create movement by mixing and matching different accents. For a large gallery, avoid using only frames or canvases. The same goes for framing—try to tie in several matted frames, frames that fit the art or photo, frames with clean lines, and gilded vintage frames.
You’ll find that when you hang the art and pictures you’ve fallen in love with over time together, you create a scene that you enjoy even more.
Lay out the grid
When it comes to the actual installation, measuring the space and then taping or marking the dimensions on the floor is always helpful.
Begin by laying out your pieces. Start with large items (you’ll want at least one to three). Don’t overthink spacing, fill in gaps with small pieces, create interest by stacking art pieces directly on top of each other, and avoid forcing the arrangement.
If you don’t have the right item for a nook or don’t have enough to fill the wall, leave room for collecting the perfect accent. After tweaking the pieces on the floor, take a picture or two or three for reference during the hanging process.
Install with appropriate hardware
When it’s time to pick up the hammer, consider the object’s weight and use anchors or screws for the heavier items. Once you have it all hung, you’ll want to level each piece. Instead of adjusting your art every time you walk by, take some Command strips or painter’s tape and secure the bottoms of the frames and canvases to the wall for the finishing touch.
Then, enjoy the lively display of your favorite art and accents.
Photography by Luke Cleland.