Art smart with a gallery wall

For those of you who have been following along, I’m happy to update that I finished the slipcover for the other chair. Hooray! Finally. You can read all about that project and see the final pictures here.

So now I’ve been able to move on to other projects in this room. Project number one was to inject pops of color into the room. I’d always intended to include more color in the smaller pieces and accessories, but it’s taken me a while to actually get to it. But I just put together a mini-gallery art wall mixing thrift store prints and art work I had on hand, and I love it.

This is what it looks like now.

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But this is what it used to look like.

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The wall was feeling particularly devoid of color. We have beautiful family photos, but the brown frames on the brown shelves over the orangey-brown piano needed to be broken up. We’ve only had the piano a few months, and I just hadn’t gotten around injecting some color onto this wall.

I’d been on a hunt for something for this wall, and then a few weeks ago while walking through a thrift store, I saw these gems.

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They’re original works with great texture and no glass. I love, love them. And they remind me of Italy, where we went for our ten-year anniversary, so double bonus. And they were only ten bucks each, so triple bonus. They were perfect, but they are a little small on their own.

We already had a painting we’d bought from a local artist when we were in Italy and a print by Gustav Klimt—two other pieces I loved but that were also quite small by themselves. I’d never found frames for them that suited them, or that were the right size. But I knew that if I addressed these issues and grouped them together, they could be stunning. Here was my jumping off point.

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Here is what it looked like with some right-sized frames and some spray paint. I also shopped the house and found a few other things to add to the mix.

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And, to keep it real, this is what my kids were doing while I was taking that last photo. After their dance, we had to break for soccer practice. But first I picked the pictures up off the floor before I had a soccer cleat rammed through my new artwork.

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And let’s see that after picture again.

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It brings a lot of life and color into the room. It may not be the big pops of color I was going for, but it is a lot of little pings. It’s a good start anyway, and I plan to keep going.

Update: You can check out the changes I made to this wall in this post on Being  a “Less Is More” Decorator.