We're gearing up for a huge blizzard in NYC tonight! Stay safe and warm, New Yorkers. Last week I showed you this 4 step makeover for my sister Lisa's bedroom. Today I'm focusing on Step 2 - Building a Better Gallery Wall. My sister Lisa is a phenomenal photographer, and she wanted her room to showcase the work of some of her super talented photographer friends. Gallery walls are a great way to make a bold statement, and display a variety of images. You can fill a large wall with a bunch of smaller pieces to create a striking and dramatic effect. We put this gallery wall together using a few of her existing frames and 10 new ones from IKEA for a total of $127. Keep reading for my tips on how to create a quick and easy gallery wall.
This is what her bedroom looked like before. There was a gallery wall thing going on, but the frames were much too small and the pictures were hard to see. Here are some of the inspiration images I had in mind to give Lisa's wall a boost. I love the density of these arrangements below. They are loosely aligned, but not too perfect. There are some beautiful pops of color, and a nice balance of white space. Although there are a variety of frame sizes, the styles are somewhat similar giving a clean, crisp, and polished look.
Arranging a gallery wall is a little bit like playing Tetris. There are many different ways to fit the pieces together, and there's no one "right" answer. You could just place things totally randomly, but it helps if there is some order to the arrangement. I'm a little OCD, so it makes me happy when everything lines up neatly. For this layout I started with imaginary grid lines centered directly over the bed - making sure each quadrant felt balanced, with a roughly equal amount of frames. I kept the spacing between each frame consistent at 3". While the central images are neatly aligned, the arrangement gets a little looser towards the sides. You just have to play around and see what works best. I stuck to 3 colors for the frames - white, black, and spray painted gold.
This is the arrangement we used for Lisa's gallery wall. We reused a few of her existing frames, and bought 10 new ones from IKEA, spending a total of $127 on frames.
A. IKEA - RIBBA frame, white (19-3/4" x 27-1/2" ) | $19.99 - Qty 1
B. IKEA - RIBBA frame, white or black (19-3/4" x 19-3/4") | $19.99 - Qty 1 white, 1 black
C. IKEA - NORRLIDA frame, white (19-3/4" x 19-3/4") | $12.99 - Qty 1
D. IKEA - RIBBA frame, white (15-3/4" x 19-3/4") | $9.99 - Qty 2
E. IKEA - RIBBA frame, any color spray painted gold (11-3/4" x 15-3/4") | $6.99 - Qty 2
F. IKEA - RIBBA frame, white or black (9" x 9") | $9.99 - Qty 1 white, 1 black
G. Existing 9"x11" frame, spray painted gold - Qty 2
H. Existing 14"x17" frame, white - Qty 2
Lisa asked for prints from her photographer friends to fill the frames, but you can get creative and make it your own. If you are on a tight budget, try framing a piece of wrapping paper or a beautiful swatch of fabric to add some color and texture. Or an inexpensive wall calendar makes for a quick and easy collection of images to display.
I hope you feel inspired to get started on your own gallery wall soon! In next week's post, I'll show you how to make the DIY ombre lampshades featured in this makeover.