Friday, November 11, 2011

Photo Gallery Wall: Part 1

Dry your eyes, my bloggy friends -- I'm back! But my little hiatus over the past couple of weeks doesn’t mean nothing’s been happening. In fact, I’ve been feverishly trying to finish my latest project to share with you lovelies.

Let's remember a couple months ago when I first hatched the idea for a photo gallery wall...I knew I wanted to display my frames in our stairwell, but I had to choose between the large wall next to the stairs, or the smaller wall above the landing.

Yuck, bad lighting (or bad photographer?). It's not really this orange-y.

Originally, I thought I was going to do the smaller wall above the landing. So I gathered all my existing hodge-podge frames, but my collection seemed a little sparse.

After trips to Goodwill, Walmart, and Hobby Lobby, I had acquired several more cheap-o frames in a variety of sizes. I also bought two small ledges and a decorative "D" from Hobby Lobby (for our last name). Then I laid everything out on the floor in our office to visualize how it would look on the wall.

But first… Since the frames were all such different styles, I wanted to make them a little more cohesive, but not ALL the same, so I decided to buy white and ivory spray paint. This would also provide contrast with the dark reddish-brown wall color and tie in to the white trim in our hallway.

And so began the spray painting. I spray painted like I've never spray painted before. Unfortunately, most of the dark frames needed several coats. Needless to say, I was probably high on the fumes on more than one occasion.

It was definitely an exercise in patience, but finally – after painting in my spare time over the course of a couple weeks -- all of the frames were painted. Because of the materials a few of them are made of, they almost have a distressed look to them, which I actually like. I didn't want everything to look "perfect."

At some point during this process, I changed my mind and decided to put the frames on the wall next to the stairs instead. It was just such a big wall that it really needed something on it. Plus, the photos would be more visible from upstairs then.

So to help map everything out on the wall before going crazy with a hammer and nails, I traced all the frames onto paper and cut them out to make templates. Then I used ScotchBlue painter's tape to place my paper “frames” on the wall. (I'd seen this idea on another blog before - genius!) It really helped to visualize what it would look like.

I ended up switching around a couple of the frames once they were up on the wall.

Once I was finally happy with the placement, I measured where the hangers were on the backs of all the frames, and used this measurement to place my nails in the wall. Luckily, most of the frames had only one hanger on the back instead of two, which made my job easier. Gradually, the paper frames came down, and the real frames went up...

However, I'm not quite finished putting the pictures in the frames (deciding what pictures to use is the hardest part...I'm tempted to leave some of the nice-looking fake people in them). So you'll have to wait until next time to see the final reveal! Yep, I'm totally leaving you hanging.


Comeca Jones said...

I love the wall you chose. I think it will look great I recently added a letter to my gallery wall as well.

Mrs. Chic said...

Glad you back! I really like the placement of your frames, I always have the opposite issue, trying to figure out the layout!

Oonafey said...

Love it already! Can't wait to see the finished product. I want to do a gallery wall around the tv in my living room, but I have commitment-phobia. I never did it at the last house, like I wanted to either.

Sara @ Russet Street Reno said...

That is going to look great!

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