I had a bunch of framed black and white photos of my boys from newborn age up to age 5. (Now that they're 8, I definitely need some new ones.) They're all framed in black frames with white mats - I like the consistency of using pretty much only black frames throughout my house, so that the frames all match, no matter what shape or molding they have. And I had a blank wall in my foyer that needed decorating. So gallery wall, it was.
Before I started hanging, I needed to clean and reframe some of the photos. These had been hanging in our house in Kansas City for several years and were in need of some TLC. I was kind of amazed at how dusty the inside of a picture can get when it's been hanging on a wall for 7 years. I used this opportunity to open each frame up and clean it. I also penciled a name and a date on the back of the photo and on the front of the white mat. (Only Dad and I can tell them apart some days...)
My handy tool set included:
- Swiffer duster - to dust :)
- Windex wipes - to wet clean the glass (love these!)
- Norwex polishing cloth - to dry and shine the glass
- Painter's tape, glue, and clips - to glue and hold the frames together in a couple of spots that needed some love
- 3M Command hanging strips - I am obsessed with these strips. I used these strips to hang all the photos on my gallery wall, even the big 20x16s. The hanging strips aren't as cheap as just nailing into the wall, but they are super easy to use and leave your walls intact. I have these in multiple sizes and keep them around continually. (The 3M Command wall hooks are a must as well - they go up quick, hold well, and come off really cleanly.)
I took everything down and started over. Sigh. Another try. Still not what I wanted. I was driving my husband crazy at this point, with all the picture frames laying all over the floor of the living room for a week while I tried to figure out where I wanted to place them.
Finally, I had the bright idea of leaving an open space in the middle for some word art. That made all the difference in the world, and I was able to stagger the photos around the wall. So much better.
For the word art, I used phrase Live & Laugh (live__laugh_C00896_23067) from the Silhouette store. Under that, I added shape Flourish 1019 (not sure where this was from, I'm not finding it in the Silhouette store). Both were cut from black vinyl. I just love, love, love how it turned out. It makes me smile everyday.
The whole wall turned out really great for our space. Now, I just need to add some more recent photos of our boys...
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