We have had a few gallery walls in various homes over the years, We didn’t call them gallery walls. We called them “arrangements” but a rose by any other name is…well, you know. I had been planning one for our current great room for awhile A few weeks ago, I started pulling all of my collected pieces out of the guest/linen/junk/soon-to-be-a-guest-room-again room and searched the rest of the house for other pieces, while I rearranged furniture, and finished painting a vintage bench.
Please excuse the dog’s toy peeking into this photo and the contents of the TV console. Ha! It was empty because we haven’t had it long and I have not yet decided what to put in it. I grabbed some of our vintage Native American baskets and pottery, a Gullah seagrass basket, ceramic bowl that I used for Easter and a bouquet of wheat which was part of an arrangement from my mother’s funeral. I will rethink the contents later but enough about that.
I had no preconceived notion about how large the gallery wall it would be. I began laying out pieces on the great room floor in earnest. My husband observed and made helpful suggestions as I continued to bring in pieces and rearrange them, go back for more, go to the basement to dig out a frame, go to the office/studio to frame a piece, rearrange more, and on and on. I finally had all of the artwork and photographs assembled in the GR and began to place them. Finally, I located the piece for the far right, top, corner and everything seemed to fall into place. It finally had the right mix of frames, colors, and sizes to balance everything out and within a couple of minutes, we had the final design seen above.
My main concern then became how to get it on the wall. I know some make a paper plan to use for placing hangers. That method has never seemed to work well for me. I’m more of a by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of person when it comes to hanging photos and art. Anyway, I started with the bottom left corner and then the next vertical row, filled in above and then moved to the next pieces on the bottom row, and added the pieces above and so on. I did use my phone camera to capture the arrangement on the floor so that we could estimate the spacing as we went. John used a level to make sure we were on track and I eyeballed everything and just went for it. The only thing difficult was the top row because the top row is about 9 feet up, but between the two of us we got it done.
I’m not quite sure yet what I am going to place over the bench. I might extend the gallery wall or put something separate and large there. These are three of my favorite pillows. The two “love” pillows (Corinthians 13) are from Dear Lillie and the quilted sunflower pillow was made by my friend Laura of Laura Jane’s Flowers and Gifts. I painted the bench with Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint in Layla’s Mint. The bench is made from an antique bed. I’ve had it for years. I should have painted it years ago. I’m sure I’ll figure out something for that big bare spot above it soon.
All of the pieces hold meaning for us as a couple. Some pieces are old and some new. In a later post I’ll go through all the items and explain what they are and why we love them.
We had fun putting it together and I am really liking the way it looks.