So I’ve had this stack of pictures in frames sitting next to my office desk for like…ever! I finally decided that today was the very last day I’d let myself slide on not putting these images ON THE WALL! For crying out loud the children will be grown and I’ll need to put my grand-kid’s pictures in these frames before long! Not really – I’m exaggerating.
Anyway! The idea of planning out a good looking wall gallery was just daunting – aint nobody got TIME for that! I considered just hanging them all willy nilly and hoping for the best but I did feel as though I could spare an extra five minutes and save myself from having to stare regretfully at a poorly arranged wall gallery for the rest of my life – So I decided to short cut my way through and stick with an easier method.
Step 1: Secure the Materials
All you need is 1. A few sheets of paper – scrap paper works great – all those papers little Suzie brings home from school? You don’t NEED to keep all 50 of her spring flower coloring pages, cut those bad boys UP and do something useful with them.
2. Scissors – or a knife – or just fold the paper and tear it. It doesn’t have to be pretty so any method of making paper the approximate size is just fine.
3. Some kind of sticky thing to tack your paper to the wall. I didn’t want to go upstairs to find tape but I did have these little red sticky tab things in my drawer left over from something so that’s what I used. You can use gum if that’s all you have and you can just leave that right on the wall and hang your picture over the top if it doesn’t come off. I wouldn’t recommend it – but sometimes you just go with it.
Step 2: Trace the shape of your frames
OK, so I had 2 8×10 pictures, 3 5×7 pictures, 2 4×6 and 5 3.5×5 pictures in frames. The frame is obviously larger so instead of measuring I just popped the frame onto the paper and traced around two edges having the other two edges lined up with the corners of the paper. I stacked paper on top depending on how many outlines of each size I needed and cut out the templates. I had the pictures all laid out on my desk and I placed the little paper template on top of each image so I knew I had them all covered.
Step 3: Start Laying it out
I went ahead and hung my two biggest images on the wall to kind of give myself boundaries – you don’t have to use the two biggest, you can use any size but this just kind of gives you two borders between which you can arrange all the other images.
I’m sure there’s some kind of “right way” or “mathematical” ratio of space to images or something but again – I don’t do math and don’t have time for all that. I just like to go ahead and do it already!
On your papers that you cut to match your frames jot down who is in the image. In 2 of my 5×7 frames I had all the kids so I wrote “group” and in one 5×7 I had just the girls so I wrote “K&A”. Just having the frame size is fine, but you don’t want to put all the pictures of one person all next to each other so this way you can spread everyone out.
Having these little papers makes it easy to move your pictures around without having to take nails out of the wall every time. Just play with it a few minutes and step back to make sure you like it. (Just be sure to turn the fan off or your papers will blow all over the place. I know this…from experience.)
HINT: If you’re adding other art to the wall besides pictures – just trace the shape of that art and put it up there too. If your art is larger than a regular sheet of paper, grab some newspaper or maybe even a cardboard box or just piece some papers together to make it the right size. The point is not to make too much more work for yourself, keep it simple – the art is what is important, not the templates.
Step 4: Hang the real thing
Now that you’ve got it planned, slap those babies on the wall! My frames were just little plastic ones so they weren’t heavy and I didn’t need put a little nail to get them hung. I hammered that nail right through the paper so I didn’t have to guess where it should go and ripped the paper off when I was done.
If your art is heavy or at risk of falling, use those plastic sheet rock hanging things and a screw to secure it to the wall.
Step 5: Step back and enjoy
Congratulations! You are a gallery maker extraordinaire! The best art to hang on your wall is the art you have! Pat yourself on the back and take a picture of your wall of art so you can show all your friends how awesome it looks. My office is long and skinny, I couldn’t get a good shot with my “fancy camera” so my terrible cell phone picture will have to do. I love it so much – but mostly I love the people in it!!!