At Maison Numen we live for handmade decor and love nothing more than a well-designed home, where the personalities and tastes of the inhabitants can be seen in every feature. Whilst we dream of homes with endless floor space for exquisite furniture and limitless wall space for hanging the perfect pieces of art and artifact, in reality, many of us have to make do with less. To get around the issue of lack of space, there’s nothing better than a thoughtfully curated gallery wall: the ideal way to display your collected treasures and make a home truly your own.
We’ve written this short guide, drawing on both our own experience as decor specialists and the wisdom of gallery curation, with a specific focus on the display of artifacts and craft objects – either on their own or alongside art.
We recently created a gallery wall using guapas, a type of Panare fibre tray from the Amazon, and shall be using this as an example. Remember, though: nothing makes a gallery wall like personal taste and preference, so invest yourself in it, get creative and have fun!
- Finding a Wall
The first step to hanging a gallery wall is deciding which wall to use. The beauty of the gallery wall is its flexibility: it can work as well on a staircase as in a lounge. You may want to work vertically, in which case a staircase is ideal, or horizontally, in which case a lounge or hallway serves perfectly. You may, alternatively, want to work both ways – it is completely up to you!
- Selecting Your Pieces
Once you’ve decided which wall to use, it is worth deciding what handmade decor to hang. In our example we used arranged our guapas in a geometric pattern, bringing out the gorgeous designs woven into them. You can hang all art, all artifact or a mixture of both – the best gallery walls will display home accents which accentuates each other, bringing out the features of every one of your treasures.
- Establishing a Layout
Once you have an idea of which handmade decor you will display, lay them out on the floor to get an idea of organization and spacing. Once again, this is up to you: do you want an organized layout, as with ours, or a more organic one? It is a good idea to leave around 8cm (31/4 inches) between each piece: the background wall will work to frame your collection and draw the eye to the handmade on display.
- The Paper Shadow Technique
A great way to simplify to hanging process is to lay your pieces on paper, cut out their outline, and mark where the fixtures are. You can then tape these paper shadows to the wall (remember to use masking tape in order to avoid leaving a mark!) and drill straight through them, using the marks as guides. This method also allows you to see if the display will work.
- Mounting the Paper
It’s now time to start preparing to hang! Galleries center paintings at 150cm (59 inches), as this is the average eye height. Start with the paper outlines of the central piece(s) and center them at this height. Remember that different wall materials will need different types of fixtures, so it is worth doing research into this before starting.
- Time to Hang!
Once you are happy with the placement of paper outlines and have inserted the fixtures in the right places, you can strip the wall clean and start hanging your collection. Within no time, you will have your own personalized gallery wall!
- Adding and Adapting
One of the great things about gallery walls is that their only limit is the space they inhabit – you can keep expanding the display by adding new handmade decor, or even move on to another wall in your home. You can also change your display as you see fit – once you’ve mounted one gallery wall, shifting things around is easy.
You can also change your display as you see fit – once you’ve mounted one gallery wall, shifting things around is easy.
We’d love to hear your experiences, insights, and suggestions about gallery walls – just leave a comment below!