In the 5 Tips for Creating a Gallery Wall Like a Designerpost, we had given a great tip for visually seeing how a Gallery Wall can come together by taking craft/butcher paper and cutting out all the shapes of all your pieces and taping them to the wall. However, if it's a really big wall, you can try another method.
For April's project, we laid out all her pieces on the floor. This allowed us to move things around as we went. This is also important if you're a visual person. Sometimes you just need to see it all together before you commit to the final outcome.
TIP: Take a picture of your layout before you begin hanging each item. It's a great reference, especially when you're up on a ladder trying to remember where to place individual items.
Our next step was to lay out a Focal Piece. To do this, we took April's main focal piece, which happened to be a vintage photo of her great-great grandmother. It was a large piece and she wanted it to be well seen.
Since this Gallery Wall is part of her entry, we realized the photo needed to be placed at the farther end of the wall, so it wouldn't get blocked by the door. It was the natural place for the eyes to rest when you first walked into their home.
Once we determined that particular piece, we could build around it. We took into consideration height, color, texture, shape, direction, etc...
The Wood Chevrons were the next easiest piece to place. They take up a large space on the wall and yet can help give a flow to a Gallery Wall. The skinny void created by the Vintage Photo of April's great-great grandmother and the corner of the wall, made it an ideal place for the Chevrons. (You could also use a Growth Ruler in a skinny spot. See the picture above with the craft paper template.)
I also asked April, what pictures she wanted to group together. She had two pictures of a set of grandparents that she wanted to be next to each other. (See the oval black and rectangle black frames above the vintage baby photo.) There was another group of pictures of her and her husband's Dad that she wanted to be in close proximity of one another.
April wanted to use an antique church pew under the coat rack, which was already on the wall. Everything else could go all the way to the ceiling. For those of you that might think having so many elements on the wall would make it feel overwhelming, April commented she thought it made the wall look even bigger. Plus, keep in mind, that it's your Gallery Wall. Not anyone else's. The beauty of it, is that you can do whatever you want.
We kept building the Gallery Wall moving from right to left. We had to edit some items and move others. Especially when we had to take into consideration the door bell already on the wall. We just built around it.
We added a sign with wording and that sweet "6" to represent April's family. Everything was personal. Everything held a special place in her heart.
You can also use unexpected items on your Gallery Wall. That wood bracket is actually the Hymnal Holder that used to be attached to April's vintage church pew. She wanted to incorporate it into the design, so we attached the wire basket and faux herbs onto the front of it with twine. Easy peasy. Now she can put things in the shelf, too.
In the end, April was thrilled with the end result. It was a project she had wanted to complete for a long time. It was an honor to be a part of it.