Thursday, May 2, 2013

Two Gallery Walls in Two Styles

Since January I've been on a home decor kick, redoing everything from our dining table to my mint green dresser. The only decoration rules that I follow are that everything that's getting a makeover needs to be second-hand and/or refinished on a budget; other than those two rules anything goes - bright colors, different eras, pattern mixing, etc.

The inspiration to join the crafty world of DIY stemmed from all the free time I had when I was unemployed and from the many home style blogs I subscribe to. Recently I noticed a trend on these home life blogs - gallery walls. It seems like every blogger with a hammer is busy nailing clusters of frames into walls. A quick search on Pinterest for Gallery Walls will prove this by displaying hundreds of images. Here are a several that stood out:
I don't typically follow trends when it comes to fashion but with home decor I find myself joining the bandwagon so I decided to do my own take on the gallery wall using two different styles.

For the first gallery wall I bought cheap frames of all sizes from different thrift stores, separated the glass from the frame, cleaned the glass, and spray painted the frames. I chose to use a uniform color just to make my life easier and I chose a simple white to let whatever I framed be the focal point.

Then I framed photos (mostly ones that I took from our recent trip to Colombia), decorative paper, and even a piece of traditional fabric from Mexico.

To hang them I used the conventional level-and-a-pencil method but I've seen some people get real creative and trace their frames on poster board/newspaper/butcher paper, cut out the shapes, and then tape those shapes onto the walls first, hammer the nail directly into the paper, tear the paper away from the wall, and then hang the frame. This method seems to work best if you want to plan exactly how the frames are going to be hung, that way you have something to look at before you actually start putting holes into your walls. I just went with the flow and hung them frame by frame.

As far as gallery walls go it's on the smaller side but it works for the space. I may add more frames to the top and have it extend all the way to the ceiling or I might just leave it as is for now. Since we are renting I don't feel compelled to put more holes into the wall or invest more time into this particular project. When we own a home I'd love to have a gallery wall like the one on the top right and/or bottom left of the collage I made above. So for now this will suffice.

For the second gallery wall I had Chris' help and we decided to go bigger. Inspired by the lifestyle blog A Beautiful Mess I decided I wanted a gallery wall made up of our Instagram photos so we ordered 180 photos from our combined accounts through PostalPix and on a Friday night we uncorked a bottle of wine and put them up. The only tool we used was painter's tape, both for sticking the photos to the wall and for measuring the space in between each row and column. This project was super easy and fun so it would be great for anyone that's a beginner at experimenting with their crafty side.

The overall project took a few hours but seeing the final product was totally worth it. It's definitely a conversation starter and the most popular decor item in our house. And having so many photos displayed without having to put holes in the wall is a huge plus!

It's been over two months since we stuck all these photos on the wall and they're still holding up nicely. Since we only used tape it's easy to switch out the old photos for new ones, especially since we're always taking pictures and putting them on Instagram. The photos we remove from the wall would fit nicely in a scrapbook (who am I kidding, I've never made a scrapbook) or photo album.

So there you have it, two gallery walls in two different styles.

Thanks for reading, now go create something!


Alyssa Norcross said...

Hi Ana! I LOVE LOVE LOVE your Instagram wall! What a fabulous way to bring color into a room in a meaningful way! I just stalked your blog big time and I love it. You are a fabulous writer and I enjoy reading about your perspective on life. I'm happy to see you are teaching as well! Looks like great things are happening for you two. Tell Chris hello for me! Ciao!

Ana Maria said...

Hi Alyssa! The Instagram wall is a ton of fun and always a topic of conversation whenever someone comes to visit. The one at our new house is even bigger than this one! So glad you stalked my blog, keep on stalking! :)