Make Your Own Gallery Wall in 5 Easy Steps (PHOTOS)

Making_Photo_WallI've been staring at the empty wall across from my bed for more than a year now. Ever since I moved into my small little slice of New York City, I contemplated what to with the empty space. I dreamed of hanging my TV there, but the crappy plaster that the walls are made of just makes me nervous. So the other night, on a whim, I finally sprung for a boatload of frames and made myself a gallery wall.

I've seen loads of fun gallery walls, or in layman's terms -- clusters of frames arranged on a wall -- on DIY sites around the Interwebs and Pinterest. It must of been the $3 gold frame on sale that finally made me splurge for the other seven and just put something up there already. And let me tell you, I'm so ecstatic that I did it. Not only that -- but now I have a rad display that cost me under $60.

Check out my tips for creating your own gallery wall, here:

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1. Don’t spend a fortune. There are loads of bargain stores where you can buy frames on the cheap. My spontaneous decision to make a gallery wall happened at TJ Maxx, and I managed to get all of my frames and the shadowbox centerpiece for $54. I've been looking for art for that wall for months, and none of it was that cheap. Other bargain stores to snag your wall decor? Check out Marshalls, HomeGoods, Jo-Ann Fabrics, and Target. Do yourself a favor, too, and check if there are printable coupons before taking the plunge.

2. Pick frames that complement each other. You could be quirky and go in all sorts of directions, but the goal at the end of this is to make some sort of cohesive unit. Choose frames that have the same kind of color scheme. I opted for neutrals, but a few of the wood frames I chose have some light blue in there. That light blue ties them all together.

3. Lay it out before hammering into the wall, and TAKE PICTURES: The last thing you want to do is start hammering holes in the wall and not have remember which frame you liked in which spot. Lay out all of your frames on the ground first, and then snap a photo.

gallery wall

This way, you won't forget the exact right way you want this thing to look.

4. Have a level on hand. The last thing you want is some Alice in Wonderland mockery on your wall. The best part? You don't even have to leave your apartment to get yourself a level. There are loads of iPhone and Android level apps that work just fine. My app of choice is iHandy Level (free, itunes.com). 

5. Fill 'em right: This may be the hardest part. Sure, getting the frames in a balanced layout takes time -- but filling them has proven even more difficult for me. I'm opting for a couple prints from Etsy as well some pictures of friends and family. Be creative. This is your chance to bring out your personality!

Have you ever made your own photo wall at home? Do you have tips and tricks of your own?

 

Images via Emily Abbate

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