Wall Gallery 101: Adding Visual Appeal to Your Wall Display

Your living room or dining room wall can in themselves serve as a decorator’s canvas. The personality and atmosphere of a certain room can be greatly enhanced by what you put up on your wall. You can go for a playful look, a calming and relaxing ambiance or add energy and panache, depending on your wall décor. Others use a variety of paint finishes, a combination of paint colors or some wall paper.

Still, for others, photographs and artwork in frames are the way to go. Framed images can be a great way to personalize your wall, especially if you use family photos displayed in a carefully planned and designed wall gallery. However, for an empty wall, one or two framed photos or artwork can look sparse. You need to have a number of framed images.

Your goal is to do justice to each of the photographs but to also ensure that the overall display does not clash. Here are some tips to up the “wow!” factor of your wall gallery:

  • Choose the frames to provide the structure for the photo or artwork display.
    • Harmony with the room. What kind of overall look is your room going for? Is it also centered on a particular theme? If the room s designed to exude a classic and elegant atmosphere, with classic furniture pieces, a glass chandelier and rich carpeting, the best frames to use would be antique picture frames. Or, the room can have a contemporary feel to it, with black and chrome furniture, modern lighting and sculptures, all at a minimalist theme. In this case, a modern design of black or chrome for your picture frames will work best. The room can also have a rustic theme – with wood furniture and ornaments. You can use picture frames in wood finishing. Choose picture frames that do not clash with the room’s overall design.
    • Color combinations. You can choose to use only one frame color, with the pictures providing the contrast. You can also choose from a color palette, where the frames come in various shades of one color. The important thing is that the frames should ideally be neutral in color and not grab the focus from the images. This way, the wall gallery will not look too busy and cluttered.
    • Choice of material. One way to unify a wall gallery display is to choose basically the same materials for the frame. For instance, if you are choosing wood or bamboo frames, it is best to be consistent for all frames in the gallery
  • Carefully curate the contents of your wall display. You can use a combination of framed photos, artwork, monogrammed letters, mirrors and other wall décor. You can also combine picture frames and shadow box frames as well as other custom display cases for added texture. However, your choices should center on a certain theme – family, landscapes, love, travel, a color motif or a particular era. The colors of the artwork and photos should also be cohesive. When displaying, do not mix and match black and white photos with glossy, colored photos. However, you can get a good display by mixing black and white photos with a combination of sepia photos. In the same way, the photographs should not feature photos from a vast range of eras or themes. Otherwise, the total effect can be jarring and exude a feeling of being disconnected.
  • Decide on the wall layout. When you have a lot of photographs or artwork for display, it will not do well for you to simply hang them without envisioning the overall effect. If you have a number of framed photographs or art, you need some careful planning. Using a simple grid can work. So does hanging up the frames, single file. However, this can be a bit boring. After all, you are using picture frames to improve the visual appeal and personality of the room. Here are some considerations:
    • Balancing the “weight”. If you are using a combination of large, medium and small-sized frames, the layout should provide a sense of balance for the entire display. This means you need to place large frames beside two or three smaller frames. Putting two or three large frames together can make that section of the display too “heavy”.
    • Frame placement. Ideally, the frames should be at eye level. This means the viewer does not have to loop up or stain his view downwards when viewing your display.
    • Spacing. Do not put frames too closely beside each other. Ideally, there should be at least one inch of space between frames. However, the distance between frames should not also be too widely placed or else the display will also look sparse.
15th Mar 2015 Eric Morgan

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