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Moms

How Do You Make One of Those Gallery Walls, Anyway? A How-To

We constantly open home décor catalogs (Pottery Barn, we’re looking at you) and see fabulous gallery-style photo displays on walls. A large grouping of multiple-sized photos — with a piece of unexpected art or a hangable curio thrown in for good measure — is a great way to show off family pictures or even framed art that your kiddo has created. It can be a tedious, lengthy process with lots of arranging, measuring, and hammering involved, so we thought we’d break it down into several easy-to-follow steps. We promise, it’s totally doable!

1. Get your wall ready. You must have a smooth surface, so make sure to patch any holes or sand down any unevenness. Decide where you want your gallery of photos to be on the wall. Apartment Therapy suggests a 57-inch rule, but use your judgment and mark the spot on the wall with a light pencil or masking tape.

2. Figure out what photos you want to include. Themes aren’t necessary, but some people tend to use all black-and-white photos or frames that share the same color family. We love the idea of incorporating drawings that your child has done or adding in a non-framed element such as one of these zinc letters from Anthropologie.

3. Determine your wall arrangement and see how each frame will hang. This super important step will help you avoid surprises when hanging. Flip the frame over. If it hangs via a string or wire, stretch that string or wire out as far as it will go, hold it up to its place on the wall, then make a mark on the wall with a light pencil where it stops. If you’re dealing with a simple hole or hook on the back of the frame, measure where that hole is from the top of the frame, hold the frame to its place on the wall, and then make a light mark where the hole would be.

4. Hang your pictures. When you’ve made all the measurements and marked where all of your pictures will go, you’re set to hang your photos. Decorating is always a work in process, so don’t worry if you feel your gallery is unfinished or not what you envisioned. Just keep working at it!

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10.23.2012 / 12:35 AM EDT by Lauren Mang
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