I am really excited about this post today! This project has been a long time in the making. It has taken me over a year to actually see a Gallery Wall in our living room come to fruition. After pinning a billion ideas and scouring local thrift stores for frames my motivation just fizzled out. That’s where Kristen from Capturing Joy comes in. She hosts an annual Decorating with Family Pictures Series that inspired me to get my stuff together and create this personalized gallery wall that just screams “US”.
I waffled back and forth between participating in the series and not participating in the series because I knew that it would be a big commitment and a lot of work. And I am so glad that I stuck to it!! Creating a gallery wall was actually much easier than I thought it would be.
The hardest part was finding the individual pieces that I wanted to hang. Well I had been collecting things for a year now so I had a pretty good stock pile of frames and ideas. What actually took me the longest time was photographing our space. Lighting and the grainy quality of my photos has been an issue – I think a new camera body may be on the Christmas list this year *wink*.
I wanted to show you a “before” shot. Traditionally we have had these two frames that I just swap out with seasonal photos throughout the year. We have also had a really large mirror hung up in this space prior to that. But it lacked personality and a finished feel in my opinion.
p.s I am SO not an interior decorator and really struggled with the “staging” and colour choices (thanks to my peeps on Facebook and Instagram for all of your insight along the way). And these sofas are super comfy but mostly used by Max, our old timer of a Cocker Spaniel, he’s a permanent fixture on them…. so please disregard how messy they look at times… I was constantly shooing him off… poor guy… LOL
Here is where I began. All of the frames were found at thrift stores for a dollar or two. I left them all as is (some were more distressed than others) and simply played with the placement of them with my other elements by laying them all on the floor. The mason jar holder is a DIY from a few years ago, the large distressed arrow is from a local momma maker (and friend), the embroidery hoop was in my stash and the metal @ symbol was a recent find from Homesense.
I traced the shape of each element of the gallery wall onto craft paper, cut it out, marked where the picture hanger was and taped the paper to our wall. This step only took about 30 minutes but was so worth it when it comes to moving things around and not putting a billion nail holes in the wall.
I also played around with what picture or photograph I thought would look good in each frame. I wanted this to be uber personal and truly reflect us as a family.
The part of this process that I thought would be the most difficult, hanging all of the elements, was actually the easiest. Having all of the paper cutouts on the wall was beyond helpful and instilled a confidence in my picture hanging ability that made this a quick process.
Here are all of the elements hung up together. Each one has meaning to our family which is the best part of this whole project for me! I used a mixture of formal family photos and more spontanious family moments to showcase in the photography. And each printable element represents us. The B&W Bike Printable represents our mad love of mountain biking and how excited the boys are for BMX to start up again this year and for the snow to melt on the ski hill for some down hill. The B&W Camera print represents my love of photography and all things vintage. The picture under the arrow is a DIY Geometric Design of our dog (tutorial coming soon). And finally the Hand Lettered “P” for our last name (tutorial coming soon). I love the eclectic look paired with all of our family photos.
The embroidery hoop in the centre of the wall is the only element that I may change in the future. I would love to display some kind of retro camping artwork but I just haven’t found the right thing yet. For now I simply printed out a photo from Instagram and washi taped it to the wall. I think that this is a fun idea and an easy way to change things up more often!
See? Max was ever supervising… or sleeping…
To the left.
To the right.
Friends often ask me where I got this lamp.. Walmart believe it or not! Great right? It blocks the embroidery hoop and I am still not sure if I am okay with that or not but think that it still suits the space.
Be sure to check out all of the fabulous ideas for decorating with family photos on Kristen’s blog, Capturing Joy…