Tell Your Story with a Creative Gallery Wall

Apr 18, 2022DESIGN

Gallery Wall Inspiration, Joanna Goddard

Gallery walls chock full of personal photos make me happy. A collage of framed photos, kids’ art, or pages from a favorite book injects nostalgia into a space. What better way to tell your story? If you want to create one of your own, here’s some gallery wall inspiration to get you started.

A picture is worth a thousand words. And the memory is priceless.

My favorite space to install a gallery wall is the dining room. Looking at photos of my kids and ancestors in one space warms my heart. My great-grandmother and grandmother were vigilant about preserving family photos. Like their homes I grew up in, our home is full of images of generations of familiar faces. Little did they know, they gifted me with the perfect gallery wall inspiration.

I love scanning our gallery wall with my boys. We talk about what kind of people their ancestors were and what their lives must have been like. Having their images in our home allows me to share the colorful stories that were once shared with me. These are a few of my favorites:

Julie Pedraza's Great-Great-Grandparents' Family

great-great-grandparents, great-grandfather, great-grandmother and her twin, and my grandfather (in cap and overalls)

Julie Pedraza's Great-Grandmother

great-grandmother and her bestie

Julie Pedraza's Great-Grandparents

great-grandparents at the state fair

Julie Pedraza's Grandfather

grandfather working on his car


The thought of installing a gallery wall can feel overwhelming. It’s easy to make mistakes without a plan. So, here are some simple steps to gaming the gallery wall.

Step One. 

Choose a frame color palette. Will you use all black frames or a combination? I like these black frames I found on Etsy. Gallery walls that include no more than three different frame colors look best.

Step Two.

Before you begin nailing, measure and tape-off a box around your gallery wall area. Keep in mind, you’ll want to leave between 2-3″ of space between each frame. Hanging your artwork 63″ on center above the floor is the perfect viewing height for most pieces.

Step Three.

Create your gallery wall configuration on the floor. If you want to avoid making swiss cheese out of your wall, outline each frame on poster board or art paper. Tape the cut-out to the wall and nail away. This is more time consuming, but leaves much less room for error.

Step Four. 

If you’re using several sizes, hang the largest piece first, a bit off-center. If you’re hanging a grid, grab your level to ensure your frames are straight.

Step Five. 

Hang the two second largest pieces on opposing sides of the first. This will help balance your gallery wall. Fill-in the empty space with smaller frames.

If you move, remember to take a photo of your gallery wall before packing up. This has saved my hide many times.

Gallery Wall Inspiration, Studio McGee
Gallery Wall Inspiration, Copenhagen Wilderness

“When hanging a series of pictures together, keep the gap between them 2″ – 2.5″ to make use of the wall space. And keep 9″ between the art and the tops of sofas and chairs.”

—Milly De Cabrol

Creating pockets of joy around our homes is the goal. And gallery walls do just that. So, gather your photos, kids’ artwork and torn pages from your favorite book. And tell your unique story with a gallery wall.

As always, thank you for being here and sharing the articles you appreciate most. Be sure to subscribe to occasional future posts below. For bonus inspiration, my curated Pinterest Boards and Instagram Stories are yours for the taking. And if you have questions or suggestions, leave a comment or reach out via email. My mind and inbox are always open. —xo


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