Gallery Wall Dilemma

Gallery wall dilemma!! This was the gallery wall that I quickly put up for some color in my house when we moved in (almost a year ago).  I knew it didn’t look and feel right but I was just happy to have some color on my walls.  My general rule with color in your home, 90% white walls and 10% color.  If you haven’t gathered I am a total white wall gal, but definitely, love to play with color.  Anywho, I just couldn’t take it anymore and decided to tackle this dilemma, and by dilemma, I mean this wronged gallery wall.  This wall needed justice and it was about time it was served.  So without further ado here is my new and improved gallery wall…

MUCH MUCH better!! Now let me tell you why this works and the previous wall didn’t.  My wronged gallery wall, (what we will now refer to it as) was too proportioned.  What I mean by that is, it had a center that was centered, (if that makes any sense).  This is a huge no-no, as a gallery wall should not have a center.  You may have a focal point like I do, which is the colorful, circular sand art (my son made, such a proud mama), but it should be slightly off-center in your gallery wall.  Second, no-no in the wronged gallery wall is the fact that I have all the same picture sizes and color of frames…BORING!  You really should mix it up a bit to allow the eye to move through your design, gallery walls are not meant to be “equal”.  Third, no-no in the wronged gallery wall is not enough pictures to feel my space leaving to much negative space.  Gallery walls are meant to be “cluttered” within reason. Show some personality and have fun with the placement, do not measure out the pictures to have equal perimeters.  So turning our attention to the “justice served” gallery wall notice how I addressed all the issues.  First off my colorful focal point (sand art) is off-center a tad.  I added more pictures and objects in various sizes to mix up my design and give it some character.  Using objects is a great way to break up a gallery wall.  I used a plastic face mask along with a basketweave placemat to really layer in the texture and shape.  I also added a few different frames or no frames at all which also helps it to feel less “perfect”.  And of coarse by adding more art, my negative space is minimized and helps the wall feel more complete and proportionate.  Sounds crazy right?!  But seriously “less is more” is not the quote you want to use when designing a gallery wall.  “More is better”, along with, “off-center and mismatched shapes and frames” all allow this wall to feel more akin and equal.


To sum it all up:

  • layer in texture and shape for more character
  • use different shapes and sizes of art
  • use different frames or no frames at all
  • do not center your focal point.
  • use enough art to accomplish a gallery wall without too much negative space
  • have fun and enjoy the process


The best advice I can give, grab those comfy pants, (if you know me, you know that I love a good comfy pant) turn up the music and enjoy the ride.  This is a creative process with no hard rules, it is more about how the wall looks and if it feels balanced to the eye.  Not balanced with a ruler.  There is a difference there and when you accomplish it you will know it.  Don’t get too frustrated or discouraged if you have to take down what you just hung up, (more on this in a sec) just know that Rome wasn’t built in a day so have some patience because, in the end, it is totally worth it.

Your best friend through this whole process will be command strips:

They will save your wall from too many nail holes which you will have to fix in the future when you feel like changing up your wall.  Also, they allow for more “flexibility” when trying to place the art on the wall in different spots to find just the right balance.  Seriously people…these are the way to go with your gallery walls.


When you feel that your wall is balanced to the eye and you feel complete, take a picture and look at it from that view, to make sure you feel that it is truly completed.


No more gallery wall dilemma!!  This made me feel so accomplished, something that has been on my to-do list for a year now!!  To find more inspo on gallery walls follow me on Pinterest @cottonandchaos.  Also, do you have any before and after pics of your gallery walls??  If so please share as I love a good before and after!!


Happy Tuesday!!





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