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How to Design Your Own Gallery Wall

by Richard Ropp 09/12/2021

If you’re not sure what to do with an empty wall in your home, a gallery wall might be your answer. Gallery walls have been a huge trend in interior design and continue to evolve and inspire both designers and homeowners alike. A unique way to display art, photos and other decor in a curated collection, gallery walls can be exactly the style boost a room is asking for. However, like with many decor trends, it’s hard to know how to make it work for you. Here we’ll go over some tips for creating your own gallery wall.

Choose a Theme

The easiest place to begin when designing a gallery wall is with a theme. Finding something in common among all the pieces you want to display will make the collection feel whole rather than mixed up pieces. If you’re having trouble thinking of a theme, there are a few ways you can brainstorm. One way is by choosing one particular piece of art, photography or decor you want to feature on the wall and use it as a thematic guide for your other choices. Another is to think about different design styles, motifs or even cultural icons. Some examples of gallery wall themes include fashion, nautical imagery, world travel or a specific animal.

Color Matters

Color is just as important as theme for gallery walls. While not everything has to be the same matching color (or even contain the same color) it’s important to create a sense of harmony among all the pieces in your gallery. You can achieve this easily by making sure there is a color or color palette in common among all the items. If you have a piece that doesn’t contain your color choices but still looks nice alongside them, don’t hesitate to include it. You can be eclectic without looking completely random or messy by balancing bright colors with more muted tones, darks with lights and so on. Don’t forget you can always add or swap a frame to add color or a particular finish that fits your theme.

More Than Just Art

One common misconception about gallery walls is that they are strictly “art galleries.” While a gallery wall made up entirely of art or photography can look amazing in a space, you can really stretch your creativity by adding more unexpected decor. Antique signs, woodblock lettering and framed magazine clippings can add character and enhance the other pieces in your gallery. You can move beyond flat media as well by hanging hats, dishes, shadow boxes or wall-mounted sculpture. Adding in a 3D element to your gallery wall can take the entire aesthetic to the next level. While we fully recommend getting creative with your choice of objects, don’t forget to keep that sense of harmony among them so your gallery is truly a gallery and not just a wall of random pieces.

Gallery walls might seem intimidating, but once you get started, you’ll find they’re a perfect way to decorate an empty wall. They give you the opportunity not only to make an entire composition out of smaller pieces but also to display personal favorites you might never have thought fitting in with other art. Get creative and experiment with placement and selection and you’ll create a unique gallery wall perfect for your space.

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