By Megan Slack
Creating a gallery wall that is both stylish and filled with personality can often feel tricky. There is a fine line between celebrating the things you love whilst preserving your chic home decor – however, this Happy Homes Week, you longer need to choose between the two. Yes, it is more than possible to have a gallery wall filled with personal artifacts which suit the style of your home – and these experts show us how it's possible
Spend time choosing a frame
As Alice Phillimore, Lead Curator at Artfinder, suggests, our frames are almost as important as the images they hold inside. We should always give frames careful consideration; however, this is especially true in the case of a more personal gallery, when frames largely contribute to the overall chicness of your wall.
'Do you want the frames to blend into the wall, or do you want them to stand out? Opting for frames of the same shape and color, for example, black, gold, and wooden rectangle-shaped frames, are best for a contemporary look and can be soothing to the eye,' says Alice.
'On the other hand, if you're looking to create a more vintage feel, go for frames of all sizes, shapes, and colors, including ornate and patterned options, for a nostalgic vibe,' she adds.
Furthermore, Ocki Magil, Founder of the London-based gallery Blue Shop Cottage, suggests 'framing black and white photographs with the expertise of your local framer, who will create a 'smart window mount'.
'Hanging a set of four in a square is a super smart way to approach family photographs, so your friends can sit amongst your art collection,' Ocki adds.
Carefully curate each frame's placement
'When designing a gallery wall with meaningful photographs, it can be a good idea to pick out your favorites and group by themes, for example' family,' 'memorable places', 'happy events' or a mix that means something to you,' shares Alice, in her discussion of placement.
'If you're looking to create a random arrangement, try sticking with an odd number of photographs for an organic look, or even numbers for rows or regimented groups of the same size.'
Alice then offered her insider tip, reminding us to keep measurements in mind and take photos of each combination to remember which design looks best.
'After you've picked out your images and frames, measure your wall space and lay your collection on the floor, moving the photographs around if anything jumps out as being out of place. Remember to take a photo of your possible combinations before hanging them up, so you don't forget which layout is best,' she shares.
Look for inventive ways to showcase your individuality
As Ocki suggests, the best way to create joy in your home is through a tribute to the people and places you love the most, but when these memories look good and do good, it's only going to make your home even happier.
'Always buy original works of art from your friends - this is a great way to support them and also to invest in their future,' she adds.
'Being surrounded by all your friends and their beautiful work gives a home a feeling of love and support. Whether you invest in a screenprint or a scribble on a napkin – invest in artists and help them grow. I particularly love to frame friends handwritten notes, envelopes, and postcards.'
The curator continues, encouraging us to look towards postcards from our' favorite places' for unique additions to a personal gallery wall.
I have a tin of postcards from my favorite restaurant and have incorporated them into my walls. It's all about memories and celebrating the places and people we love most. My personal favorites are images of Peggy Guggenheim, Barbara Hepworth, and Shakespeare and Co bookshop in Paris.'
If you need us, we'll be ordering a bulk of vintage postcards until further notice.
Megan is a News Writer across Future Plc's Homes titles. She has a background in national newspapers in the UK and has experience in fashion and travel journalism, which she previously practised whilst living in Paris and New York City. Her adoration for these fashion capitals means she particularly loves writing about contemporary styles and trends for Livingetc.
IKEA has teamed up with Swedish House Mafia to celebrate music and creativity
The Scandinavian powerhouses have joined forces to fill our homes with style & sound
By Megan Slack •
A modern rustic Sonoma farmhouse that's a lesson in laid back California style
Open airy rooms, light and neutral color palette, rustic touches all come together to create an effortlessly relaxed vibe that's perfect for a home in Cali's wine country
By Hebe Hatton •
Explore Project Ö: A Scandi-cool cabin on a private island in Finland's Archipelago National Park
Nestled amid an organic paradise in the most joyful nation on the globe – this is the ultimate happy home
By Megan Slack •
Five interior design lessons from Finland – the happiest country in the world
Does a happy country begin with a happy home? These native designers share how to spread joy throughout your decor
By Megan Slack •
Niksen is the new Hygge - Could this Dutch concept help create a happier home?
A daily dose of niksen will help you combat the stresses of daily life - according to research by Habitat, it's just one way of creating a happy home
By Ginevra Benedetti •