I grew up surrounded by art. My dad was an incredible watercolor artist who spent hours at his paint-speckled drafting table, and paintbrushes of all shapes and sizes were at my disposal. To say I was blessed with a childhood filled with an appreciation of art is an understatement. It is undoubtedly why I have such a love and respect for all types of art, from watercolor to charcoal, modern to impressionist. I love it all.
The problem is, I can’t afford it all. That’s why I wrote this post “The Art of the Gallery Wall – Selecting Artwork” in an effort to help you create the gallery wall you desire on whatever budget you have.
Design by: Ali Cayne | Photos by: Brittany Ambridge @brittanyambridge
I have invested in a few small original pieces and signed prints, but by and large, I do not have the means to be the art collector I imagine myself being. So, I employ my favorite technique of mixing high with low in order to not just fill up my walls, but fill up my home with beautiful, meaningful art. This large-scale (44×44) art from Minted cost a total of $300 and really makes a statement.
*affiliate links used throughout this post.
Design by: Marynn Interiors | Art by: Kelly Money @kellymoneyart
One way to achieve a high-end, collected look and fill up a large, blank space is to create a gallery wall. This type of art installation has gotten a bad rap because it has been executed so poorly and splashed all over Pinterest and Instagram. There is a method to placing several different pieces of art together on a wall, and it takes intention, thought, and planning.
“Organizing and displaying collections takes careful thought.” Janie Molster
Design by: Janie Molster @janiemolsterdesigns | Botanical Art by: Becky Davis
We are renting a 2-story house for a year and the dining room wall spans the height of both of those stories, making it difficult to find affordable art that is large enough to fit the scale, so I determined a gallery wall was the best way to go. Here is the artwork I’ve chosen:
The Art of the Gallery Wall – Selecting Artwork
It’s acceptable to choose art based simply on what you like, but including a few selections that hold meaning will set your gallery apart and give you more of a collected look. And just as cooking with heart comes through in the taste of food, selecting art with heart comes through to the viewer. You will also enjoy it more in your home if you have a connection to it.
My Favorite Printable Art:
After selecting beautiful, meaningful art, you must then plan out the placement. Measure out and tape off the sizes of art you would like before ordering. You may think they’re the right size, but oftentimes, art ends up being too small or too large for a wall. With several different pieces being hung together, it’s imperative to be sure they are the right size. Here are some gallery wall layouts that work well:
Gallery Wall Designed by: Dana Lynch
Design by: Studio McGee
Image via Pinterest
If larger sizes of the art you love are too pricey, you can order a smaller, more affordable size and add an over-sized mat to increase it’s wall space.
Image via Pottery Barn
After you have carefully selected or collected your favorite art, measured and taped it off on your wall, the final step is framing. I will be covering this in Parts 2 and 3 of “The Art of the Gallery Wall”. This step has the potential to break your budget so stay tuned for my tips and tricks on framing affordably, including how to make a frame yourself and where to find mats.
Choosing art among the myriad of options out there can be daunting, so I have curated a collection of my favorite art for you. I have included everything from very inexpensive printable art to physical prints you’ll receive in the mail to large-scale paintings and artwork that are already framed and ready to hang (click here to shop my favorite art). If you choose to purchase printable art, once it’s downloaded, you may have it printed at Office Depot on 55 lb. paper for a nice quality piece.
Whatever you choose, as long as you take the time to plan out your gallery wall, measure and map it out, and only hang art you love, I personally guarantee you’ll love your collection for a long time to come.
Thank you for reading part 1 of “The Art of the Gallery Wall – Selecting Artwork,” and remember to come back for Part 2!