Tips for Creating a Gallery Wall

Last updated: October 3, 2016

A dark painted gallery wall with different sizes and colours of frames hung on it

It’s an old cliché to say that every picture tells a story, but it’s true—whether it’s original art, prints, posters, or photos of family and friends, people collect pictures important to them and take photographs to document important moments in their lives.

When placed in a carefully curated, visually appealing gallery wall, these pictures can beautifully tell the story of how your family came together. These kinds of arrangements are great for friends and family alike to reminisce about life’s happiest moments.

Time to get creative and turn your blank wall into a mosaic of memories!

Wire Hanging

The easiest and most common way to hang a painting is to hang the frame or canvas by a wire. Usually the frame or canvas will come with this equipment (nails, wire), so follow the instructions carefully to hang it on your wall. These can easily become crooked, though, so make sure you’ve hung the wire taut enough to stay steady on the nail or screw.

Polaroid String Wall

Polaroid images of babies clothespinned on a wire

Have a bunch of Polaroid pictures to hang up? Though these tiny photos have a vintage quality that can nostalgically warm up photo albums, they can be difficult to arrange because they’re so small. Compacting a handful of Polaroids in one frame can look cluttered, and the individual photographs don’t stand out as well.

However, look in any university dorm these days and you’re likely to see rows of Polaroid pictures hung up by string and clothespins. This is a minimalistic, attractive way to hang your Polaroids up with some added DIY flair. You can even fill in the rows between the strings with some pixie lights for added coziness and lo-fi charm!

Mix With Other Accessories

Balancing framed photographs with other accessories—like framed posters, awards, diplomas, and clocks—can be very visually appealing. Be sure to give each item enough space to breathe, as too much clutter looks overbearing and unorganized.

This gallery wall has a fresh balance of framed photos, posters, and other accessories, all spaced apart enough to make each stand out.

Transfer Images to Canvas

Different sized black and white family canvas photos on a gallery-style wall with an "Always & Forever" sign underneath

Image VIA Urban Rustic Living

Many photo and printing shops offer many options for transferring photographs to other media. One of the most timeless ways is by transferring photographs onto canvas—canvas gives photographs a classic quality, and the visual appeal of fabric is much nicer than a high-gloss print.

Contact your local printing shop to see how you can transfer your favourite pictures into high-quality canvas images!

Integrate a Family Monogram

Photos in different sized and coloured frames hung on a gallery-style wall behind a black sofa with throw pillows

Image Via Corynne Pless

A monogram is an illustration of your family name—it can consist of a cursive spelling of your surname, a family crest, or any other design important to your family. These act as a perfect centrepiece to surround with your best family photos.

Use Your Imagination!

Really, there’s no limit to what you can do with a gallery wall! With a bit of time and ingenuity, any wall in your home can become the centre of you and your family’s stories. In arranging your photos, think of how the wall looks as a whole, and how much the individual pictures stand out.