DIY Gallery Wall

A few months ago, right after I finished Charlotte’s big girl room, I got a hankering to redo the living room. New paint, new couches, paint the furniture, total overhaul was what I was thinking. In hindsight I think I was barely pregnant and maybe the nesting urge was hitting already? I don’t know. But my hubby talked me down in his annoyingly sensible way, reminding me about “budgets” and “saving” and all sorts of other boring financial hooey, and in the end I agreed there were probably more important things we should be spending our money on than redecorating. Boo. But I was still dying to make some sort of change in the room where we spend the majority of our time. Not that it was horribly dated or busy or anything, I was just bored to tears with it. So we compromised. I would rearrange the bookshelf and china hutch (again, with stuff we already had so it was free), make some new throw pillows for the chairs and sofa, and change up the gallery wall above our couch. Ready for the reveal?

Taadaa! I’m so in love with this new arrangement. It is personal, meaningful, and interesting without being too busy or random. I thought long and hard about what to include, and most all of the pieces are DIY.
I’m sorry I don’t have a good before shot (blogger fail) but it was a simple grouping of seascapes in white frames.

All the photos were taken by my talented hubby on various vacations, so they had sentimental value, but it was just time for a change.You can’t really tell in this shot (since my subject was clearly the cutie in the Minnie Mouse ensemble, not the wall art) but the scale wasn’t quite big enough to compete with our huge couch, and when we shifted the furniture a bit to make room for the china hut the art was no longer perfectly centered either.

Ahh, so much better. To create the arrangement I went with the tried and true, lay it all on the floor and move stuff around until it looks good.
I kept moving and adjusting and adding pieces until I was happy with the scale and spacing.

This was my original idea, but I realized it wasn’t big enough.

Closer.

Spacing still feels weird.
Anyway, it took a while to figure out exactly what looked right. I scoured the walls in all the rooms, closets, and bookshelves to find just the right pieces. When I was finally happy with the arrangement I used this method I found on Pinterest to transfer my vision to the wall. I traced all the art onto wrapping paper (I had plenty since this was the beginning of December and I hadn’t started wrapping presents yet) and then stuck the wrapping paper templates to the wall with painters tape.

My mom came in at this stage and asked if the wrapping paper was staying. πŸ™‚ I guess it would have made for an interesting festive touch! After I checked the spacing and leveled everything my dad helped me put the hardware onto the wall to hang everything. We used a combination of picture hooks and nails, depending on how big/heavy the piece was.

We hung everything up directly over the paper to make sure it lined up, then took the templates down and re-hung everything. As you can see at this point I still hadn’t finished all the artwork, but I knew I wanted a mix of pictures, photos, and text.

I started with the largest piece, this stacked frame I made at a local craft studio, Junque 2 Jewels. I added my favorite family pic from our beach vacay last May. I’m so excited to change this one out when we get our first family of four photo! πŸ™‚

I love the timeless look of silhouettes, and with a bit a research I discovered it was actually really easy to make these myself! I’ll post a tutorial when I get a chance. πŸ™‚ These are both pictures of Charlotte, one from her first birthday photo shoot and the other I took a few weeks ago. Crazy how much she changed in just over a year! Again, I will change one out for baby sister when she gets here. πŸ™‚Β 

I found this downloadable print on Etsy (I think it was $5). Chris and I agreed it was a great verse for our family. I printed it on our home printer and framed it in one of the seascape frames from our previous gallery wall.

I bought this piece at a local craft fair last fall. It kind of looks like a door panel. The inside has been painted with chalk paint. I prepped the surface with chalk, then traced the B in the center (it’s an easy method, just print whatever you are tracing, lay it face up on the chalkboard, and trace over it with a sharpie cap, pressing hard. The chalked surface will record your tracing. Then use a chalk pen to draw over your tracing onto the chalkboard). I free-handed the laurel wreath around the B.

I made the “together” sign a while ago, I just moved it from the other living room wall where it was hanging.

This is another Esty printable. Chris and I liked the clean lines of it, but I will probably change it out for a baby (or maybe sibling?) photo after little sister arrives.

Our anniversary is July nineteenth, and we try to celebrate the nineteenth of every month, so it’s a very special number for us. πŸ™‚

The piece de resistance, this beautiful handmade clock. For once I didn’t DIY this! I saw it on Etsy and just fell in love. It’s made from old pallet wood and the numbers are hand painted. I thought about trying to recreate it myself, but I knew I just wouldn’t do it justice. Instead I asked for it for my birthday, and my sweet hubby took the (fairly obvious) hint! πŸ™‚ Here’s the link to the shop if you want your own! If you can’t DIY something, buying it from a small business/individual is definitely the way to go.

There you have it, a very personal and unique gallery wall that speaks perfectly to my design style and represents our family. I think it will be a long time before I get tired of it this time! πŸ™‚


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