by Laura Gardiner
Studio Manager, Tribeca Printworks
A gallery wall is a unique display of artwork that describes your character and personal style. It’s an opportunity to express yourself, inspire conversation and celebrate your experiences. With a well-designed gallery wall, you can create a memorable visual impact on your guests and an aesthetically pleasing living space.
Just as important as the artwork you display are the frames you display them in. The frames you choose can enhance your artwork and bring your gallery wall to life. In this guide, we’ll cover how to make a gallery wall with the right frames, designs, hanging techniques and dimensional elements so you can enjoy a meaningful and beautiful display.
Selecting the Right Frames for Your Gallery Wall
Frames can highlight specific pieces of your collection and tie the artwork on your gallery wall together. There are various frame styles and materials to choose from, including:
- Wood: Using lighter frame woods like maple can help brighten a room, while darker woods like walnut can promote tradition and elegance. Solid wood painted white or black can keep your gallery wall classy and modern.
- Metal: Bronze frames can make powerful statements of luxury and exclusivity. Brushed aluminum frames are relatively common since they complement various art styles and gallery wall layouts.
- Acrylic: If you’re looking for a contemporary style, acrylic frames are an ideal option. The easy-to-hang, durable frames will create a floating frame gallery wall that emphasizes your artwork.
Tips for a Cohesive and Balanced Gallery Wall
To create a unified and attractive gallery wall, you’ll want to match your frames to your artwork and room décor. A cohesive and balanced look involves:
- Choosing a color palette: Pick frames that complement colors in the artwork and around the room to create continuity and flow.
- Matching woods: Coordinate wood frames with other wood features of the room, like tables, chairs and bed frames.
- Placing frames at the right heights: Frames should be high enough to rest over the furniture but low enough to be at eye level.
- Selecting frame sizes and styles: Frames of the same size and finish will emphasize unity and crisp lines, while varying finishes and styles can create a unique, eclectic look.
Planning and Designing Your Gallery Wall Layout
Once you’ve found the perfect frames for displaying your artwork, it’s time to plan out your gallery wall. Planning and designing your gallery wall ensures you have enough space to hang your artwork in a layout you love. Before adhering anything to your wall, you’ll want to:
- Measure the available space: Whether you are planning to transform an entire wall or just a section, you’ll want to measure the area before hanging any frames.
- Determine the layout: Decide if you want to arrange your frames with the symmetry of a grid layout or the mixing and matching of an eclectic mix or a salon style.
- Use a template or digital tool: Once you’ve measured your space and chosen your layout, plan your gallery wall on the floor, on the wall with templates or with a digital tool.
Preparing and Hanging Frames on the Wall
To prepare your frames for your gallery wall, you’ll want to thoroughly clean and dust them so they are ready to shine and beautify your artwork. Securely attach the artwork to the frames, then begin measuring space and hanging frames on the wall.
Tips for Accurately Measuring and Spacing Items on the Wall
Whichever layout you’ve chosen, you’ll need to measure and space items to maintain a clean gallery wall. Precise measurements and uniform spacing are necessary for grid layouts to bring the look together. Eclectic designs have more flexible spacing. You can leave negative space or fill empty areas with other dimensional items to bring texture and personality to the gallery wall.
How to Choose Appropriate Hanging Hardware
There are several ways to hang your artwork, and determining the best fit for your gallery wall depends on the style you want to create. Hooks and nails are traditional, reliable options, while adhesive strips can help preserve walls within a rented space.
Leveling is essential to creating a successful gallery wall. Start with the largest frame or a couple of focal pieces, and hang them first with careful leveling. The rest of your frames will align with this central point, so it needs to be level to keep the rest of the wall in line.
Enhancing Your Gallery Wall With Additional Elements
While your artwork may be the main statement of your gallery wall, you can add a few elements to highlight colors, add texture, fill in spaces and emphasize aspects of your framed pieces.
You can incorporate decorative elements such as:
- Wall sconces
- Woven baskets
- Hanging decorations
- Shelves or display ledges with small objects
Your gallery wall should tell a story of who you are and what you love. You can spotlight specific pieces or lights along a certain area to emphasize artwork and add contrast to your gallery wall. Adding personal touches and meaningful items can help tell your story as well. Consider incorporating pictures of loved ones or hanging souvenirs from your travels.
Choose Tribeca Printworks for Custom Framing Solutions
When you need high-quality, beautiful frames to elevate your gallery wall, come to Tribeca Printworks. Our handmade custom art frames are cut exactly to your piece, enhancing your art and helping you craft a breathtaking gallery wall. View our wide selection of framing options, then request a consultation for a free quote today.