I don’t know about you, but assembling gallery walls is really fun for me. It’s probably because of my type-A nature and all the planning, measuring, and leveling. I had a big blank wall in my living room and I knew really quickly after I moved in that I wanted that wall to be a gallery wall. Now, I do have some experience in creating gallery walls and I have some tips and tricks for you guys that could help you with your own.
To start, it can definitely help you narrow down your search for pieces by deciding on a color palette to try to use as a guideline. But remember not to restrict yourself so much by a palette that everything is overly matchy matchy. Picking 3 or 4 main colors and mixing those in with neutrals that are either warm or cool in town (like grays and silvers vs browns and golds, with black and white working with everything).
That is what I did for my living room wall. Since I don’t really own many fancy, expensive art pieces, I wanted to make one of my cooler pieces the central anchor, so to speak, for the set. It’s this really neat, silk screened still life by Yves Ganne. The main colors that I pulled from it were the teal, orange, and yellow. Since it has warm browns and black also in it, I tried to keep secondary colors within the warm spectrum like off-white, tans, and golds. I then sorted through all of my wall decor and frames that were floating around to pick out what would work within my palette.
Then I usually lay out the grouping on the floor, then arrange and rearrange until it feels balanced and like it will fill up about the amount of space that it will need to (take a picture too before you put everything aside). It is usually about this point that it becomes clear if I need more pieces and how many. I also check to see if I have a combination of shapes, rectangular and rounded, and a combination of flat pieces with 3-dimensional pieces. You can certainly stick to all rectangular, flat pieces if that is what you are going for, I just happen to prefer the added dimension. Once I determine whatever it is that I am lacking, then comes the fun part… SHOPPING! I typically start with IKEA, HomeGoods, and Target first since they have excellent prices and great selection most of the time. If I am not finding the right piece I am looking for, I will check out Etsy and Wayfair next, which can be a bit overwhelming with so many options, but if you look long enough, you are sure to find some really unique, quirky stuff!
Once you’ve got everything you need, lay everything out on the floor again (here is where that photo you took before comes in handy) and add in your new pieces. When you are ready to start hanging, I recommend starting with the lowest, most central piece, and working your way up and out. Now, I can go a little overboard with measuring and aligning, but sometimes the best thing to do is to grab a buddy and have one person holding things up in their place and the other standing back and deciding where it needs to go. And just sort of eye ball it! I have done it both ways, and honestly, I can’t say that measuring everything a bunch of times will really even make a big difference. There is something nice about different size gaps and things not perfectly aligned. It all adds character! Really, there are no rules for this process. Some of the coolest gallery walls I have seen or created don’t follow a grid or a color palette. Just have fun with it!