Henry and I were so excited to do this art gallery wall project! We had a pretty large-sized 14×10 foot wall in our home office that was a blank slate. For the longest time, we weren’t quite sure what to do with it. Then we finally decided that a gallery wall would be the best option! Our home office is a dark and moody color. So we chose a light wood frame that would create some contrast against the walls and tie in with the other wood elements in the room.
This was a fun project, but it did require some planning and figuring. Keep reading and I’ll tell you everything you need to know to create your own gallery wall!
Tools and Materials
- Tape Measure
- Painters Tape
- Impact Driver or Drill
- Sawtooth Hangers
Step 1: Determine How Many Frames You Need
The first thing we did was determine how many picture frames we needed to properly fill the space. As I mentioned above, our wall is 14×10 feet. After some measuring and contemplating we decided to go with a 3×3 symmetrical arrangement of 11×14″ frames.
Step 2: Decide What to Put in the Frames
When you’re creating a gallery wall, you can use family photos, art, or even a combination of the two. For our gallery wall, we decided to do art. We wanted a bit of modern touch, so we found some abstract digital art from Creative Market. There were several different pieces in the collection. So we went through them and chose 9 of them that we liked best. Then Henry used Photoshop to change the color of each to a dark blue that would tie in with our wall color.
We printed them out on playing white paper and put them in the frames. We didn’t use glossy paper because it would cause too much of a glare.
Step 3: Mount Sawtooth Hangers
The frames that we chose already had sawtooth hangers mounted on the back. However, they had two and they were mounted halfway down the frame. This would have made calculating the screw placements much more difficult!
So we decided to purchase a pack of hangers and mount them in the center at the top of each frame. It’s important to make sure you are mounting them in the exact center so that the spacing is correct and that the frames hang level.
Step 4: Determine the Spacing
With a gallery wall, it’s very important to get the spacing right, especially if your layout is going to be symmetrical. To do this, we laid all of the frames out on the floor and played around with different amounts of spacing between the frames. We finally decided on 3 1/2 inches between each, both vertically and horizontally.
Sources: Wood Frames
Once we decided on the spacing, we could determine the distance to space out the screws for each frame. Since we were only using one screw centered for each frame, the match was pretty simple:
horizontal distance = frame width + 3.5 inches
vertical distance = frame height + 3.5 inches
Step 5: Mark Distances on a Level
Using tape, we measured and marked the horizontal distance on one side of our level. Then did the same for the vertical distance on the other side of the level. We made sure and label which was which so we didn’t get confused.
Step 6: Mark Screw Placements
Using our tape measure, we marked the horizontal center point of the wall. Then using the center point, we marked the screw placement for the middle top frame. From here we could start marking all the other screws. Henry placed the level on the wall with one tape mark on the first screw location.
He made sure it was level and put a mark on the wall where the other tape mark was. Then he repeated this for all of the screws using both the horizontal and vertical sides of the level where needed.
Step 7: Hang the Frames
Once he had all nine screw locations marked, he drove a screw into the wall at each mark. We hung all nine frames making sure the screw rested in between the two middle teeth on the hanger. This ensured that the frames would hang level and not lean to one side or the other.
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