Neat and uniform or versatile and haphazard – gallery walls are a perfect way to add personality to your home. Get some tips and inspirations for a perfect family picture display in a staircase.
Stairways are particularly good for showcasing family photos because they usually lead to the private area of the house, so you can keep personal images from being too much in the public view. Besides, every time you use the stairs, and that will be often, you get a chance to reminisce and celebrate life’s happy moments.
When it comes to the choice of pictures and frames, there is really no right or wrong. It’s all a matter of personal decorating style, your staircase design and the images you want to display. However, to avoid making unnecessary holes in your wall, plan the design carefully before you grab a drill or hammer.
The easiest way to plan a neat arrangement is to take out the paper inserts in the frames and lay them out on the floor (you can also trace the frames or photos on brown craft paper). Once you get the first idea of what the grouping will look like on the wall, tape the silhouettes onto the walls and move them around until you feel they look right. Finally, take each frame, measure where the nail would be installed and put the nail through the paper. Easy peasy!
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When hanging a grouping of pictures in a modern, minimalist space, you may not want a look that would be too busy. Think of the pictures as one unit and use a continuous thread: uniform size or type of frames, all black frames, all black and white photos, etc. Hanging pieces at eye level and leaving equal spaces between them will give a neat, formal look without specific focus on any one photo, but it’s not a rule of thumb. Just trust your eye and do what you feel seems right.
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If you don’t have a thing for symmetry or your space is casual and eclectic, you can really have fun and experiment with different combinations. Use frames in a mix of colors, dimensions, textures and mat sizes, intersperse art, your kids’ drawings, mirrors and empty frames. Better yet, try juxtaposing two different gallery types: one vintage and decorative and one that is neat, modern and orderly.
Although you’ll create a rather busy look, the pieces will work together because of their family ties. One useful tip, though. Start by hanging a grouping in the middle of the wall (preferably hang a larger piece in the center to anchor the arrangement) and gradually build around it. A great advantage of versatile arrangements is you can keep adding to them without breaking any rules.
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