Gallery walls are the perfect way to create a bold statement in your home, brightening up plain walls and expressing your personality through your chosen artworks. They can work anywhere in your home, but we particularly love them in reception rooms, in hallways and leading up staircases. But how do you plan a gallery wall without making a mess of your walls? Here’s our simple step by step guide to how we create ours.
You don’t have to finish your gallery wall all in one go – you can start small and leave space to expand sideways and upwards as you acquire more art that you want to display. We recommend starting in the middle of your chosen wall space and going outwards. If you’re creating a gallery wall behind your sofa, for example, start in the middle of the where the sofa sits and you can expand out to either side. The exception to this is if you are hanging art down a staircase – you could start at the top and work down (or the bottom and work up).
Once you’ve decided your starting point, it’s time to collate your artwork. Eclectic walls of mis-matching prints can create a bold statement but if this is your first time styling a gallery wall we recommend choosing a theme. This could be a colour scheme that runs through your prints, or a theme such as floral motifs or abstract art. Within this theme, you could include original artworks, prints, illustrations and photographs of different sizes and shapes.
Once you have your artworks chosen, get busy framing. We’ve chosen matching frames for the simple gallery wall illustrated in these images but you can create a more eclectic look by mixing and matching frames. Consider the rest of your interiors – simple oak frames look great in Scandi-inspired spaces but if the rest of your room has black or metallic accents you may wish to reflect these in your choice of frames.
Now you have all your art selected and framed, clear some space in front of your wall and lay them all out on the floor. If you don’t have room for this or are styling your art in a tricky space such as down a staircase you could take photos of each framed print and use Photoshop to create your layout. Use the same methods as when styling a shelf – balance out colours, shapes, sizes and subjects. Think of triangles when balancing colours – if you have a print that is predominantly pink bottom centre of your wall, balance this out with flashes of pink above to the left and right.
When you have a rough idea of your layout, it’s time to start hammering nails into your wall. Sometimes things look different once they’re up on the wall in front of you, or you have to move your nails for various reasons so allow for a bit of flexibility. Start in the middle and work outwards, stepping back each time you hang a print to assess how it looks before hanging the next. If you can, ask another member of your household to assist at this stage – stand back and ask them to hold up each print, marking on the wall where the nail will hang once you’re happy with the position.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Prints don’t always have to hang on the wall to be part of a display. If you have a console or sideboard against your chosen wall, some of the prints could be propped up rather than hung. You could also try leaning a larger print on the floor against the wall to extend the eye downwards. Or what about going full height floor-to-ceiling on a small wall rather than thinking horizontally? You could also try mixing mirrors, textured wall hangings or other wall-mounted accessories in with traditional prints, photographs and artworks.
Start building your own gallery wall by selecting your favourite designs from our collection of prints.