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How to Make a Gallery Wall

 How to Make a Gallery Wall - Marty's Musings
We have transformed several areas of our home in the last three months and I want to start out sharing the one that tickles me the most.
 

Since I got hooked on Pinterest a few months ago (you can follow me by clicking on my side bar) I have incorporated some of the ideas I’ve pinned. My inspiration for my project is found here. I was totally enthralled with the details on how to make a gallery wall in our den.

Collect Frames and Paint

Since I am a yard saler/cheapskate thrifter I began by collecting frames from around the house and up in my store attic. I had no idea how I would do the arrangement but I got enough frames to use 4×6, 5×7 and 8×10 black and white pictures. Whenever Walgreens had a sale on prints (or a free offer) I would order more black and whites in various sizes. I did NOT think through where everything would go and in which frame ahead of time. I just ordered pictures I liked or ones that would give me some variety.

My husband spray painted the frames with an aerosol primer and white spray paint. He even sprayed some of the mats. The additional mats I bought half off at Michael’s. This process of ordering pictures and gathering the frames was time consuming, lasting over a few weeks. It was a little tedious. Okay, very tedious.

Layout on Floor or Flat Surface

I then started randomly inserting pics in frames and created an arrangement on the kitchen floor where I could get an idea what I still needed and which frames I would be working with.

 

Hang Frames

For this wall the most important part was deciding on the center frame which contained three 8×10’s. My husband centered this on the wall and just started randomly hanging the rest. There are certainly more precise ways to go about this but we knew we didn’t want a symmetrical grouping.

 

Decide on Words/Saying

On a sheet of paper I laid out the “family is” phrase and loosely diagrammed the frames. I enlisted my family to give me words they felt described our family. I then sketched the words around the frames. (None of this was done in precise measurements….obviously.) You can tell by the sketch that I later moved words around.
 
 
 
 
 
As the weeks passed while I was working on this project I was also buying white vinyl for my Cricut, using coupons, of course, from various craft stores around town.
 

Use Diecutting Machine to Cut out Words

The part I dreaded most and kept putting off was the final step of cutting the words out with my Cricut Expression. Using the 12×24 cutting mat, I chose one word and font (cartridge) at a time. I measured in between the frames to get an idea of the size I would need. However, the size is relative when using the Cricut so I cut out each word from cardstock first to make sure they would fit in the allotted space. I also kept a list of which fonts and sizes I used so I wouldn’t duplicate them.
 
 
 

Attach to Wall

Next I used masking tape to align the words on the wall as I was deciding where to place them. I loved the flexibility of moving the words around to find the best look.

 
 
 
 

I let my husband do the actual work of attaching the vinyl  he is much more of a perfectionist than I am and is also better at detail work. He found this little gadget that was an amazing help. It is a laser level that mounts to the wall with removable adhesive tape and projects up to a 15 ft. laser line. Lining up the words….easy peasy.

You can find it here .  It looks like a bug on the wall.
 
 
 
 
 

 
Peeling the transfer paper off the vinyl word.

 
Our family motto is “families are forever.”

 

My husband using the bone folder to attach the vinyl to the wall.

 
The finished product! I had such a hard time photographing this wall without a glare.

 
At night this wall is so inviting and personal. That’s MY recliner/rocking chair!
 
 
Better shot in the daylight.
 
How to Make a Gallery Wall - Marty's Musings 
 
 

Total cost of my Gallery Wall

Estimated: $75
Includes laser level, frames, mats, black and white photos, spray paint and primer, vinyl and transfer paper.
 
Want to see more of our DIY projects? Just click on the picture to be taken directly to the post!

Small Bathroom Remodel from Marty's Musings 

Frugal Tips for a DIY Kitchen Makeover from Marty's Musings

Craft Room Makeover and Organization Ideas - Marty's Musings

 
This post contains affiliate links.


Comments

  1. That looks AMAZING! Great job!

  2. Marty that is really neat. You gave me an idea for the new house.
    Miss you!

  3. I LOVE that! It is so beautiful!

  4. That looks awesome! Do you want to come over and do that to my wall?! Please!

  5. Looks Great! Love the look mixing it meaningful words, text and fonts! Thanks for sharing!

    xo Lynda

  6. I love what you’ve done with your gallery wall. LOVE the words you’ve added to the wall it gives it even more meaning!

  7. I love your gallery wall! Beautiful!

  8. LOVE it!

    Just got a cricut expression ($120 on Craigslist). Have been thinking about some vinyl wall words.

    You have inspired me!

    :) :) :)

  9. Oh wow, isn’t this a spectacular wall. I love the addition of the vinyl. Thanks so much for sharing at our party this week.

  10. Hey Marty! Looks awesome! What a fabulous wall! Great job!
    Melody
    One chatty Chic

  11. Wow, that looks awesome! Y’all did a great job!

  12. I absolutely love it, it’s so beautiful! I love your gallery wall and the whole space! Love the idea of adding the words!!! Thanks for the inspiration!!!! :o)

  13. Looks great! DD2 did a gallery wall, but did not include words. We used the brown paper method to hang pictures. Thanks for sharing on Met Monday.

    Allison
    Atticmag

  14. Such a great idea! I love it! Liz

  15. absolutely love your gallery wall. Best one that I have seen ever!
    laura

  16. Love your gallery wall-following you from beneath my heart -stop on by for a visit!!

  17. What a great wall!! I love it!! I am getting ready to do one…it’s kind of scary, lol! I don’t want to get it wrong! I am your newest follower! I would love it if you would link it up today at my linky party! I also have a Blog Hop still going on from Tuesday! Hope to see you there!
    kim@madeinady
    http://madeinaday.com

  18. Featuring YOU today! Thank you so much for linking up to {wow me} wednesday last week. :)

    Ginger @ gingersnapcrafts.com

    http://www.gingersnapcrafts.com/2012/04/take-look-at-you-top-5-few-of-my-faves.html

  19. How fun! I love all the words incorporated. Well done!!!!

  20. What vision!! Why can’t I come up with these great ideas!! You done good! :) Visiting from BNOTP linky party.

  21. Love it! Such a great idea. :)
    I’m going to share it in my next post. Thanks for linking to my party!
    Blessings,
    Traci

  22. LOVE this wall. Inspired me to try this!

  23. Wow, that is one substantial gallery wall! It looks great. I love that you made your own vinyl cutouts too (makes me want a Cricut!). I added a gallery wall down our stairwell last fall – it’s amazing how much more “personal” it makes the space feel! Great job!

    Visiting from the Making Monday Marvelous party. :)

  24. This turned out so cute! I would love for you to share this with my Unveil Your Genius link party! http://taylornorris.blogspot.com/2012/04/unveil-your-genius-link-party-6.html
    (New linky every Thursday…each linky runs for a week)

    Happy Sunday!

  25. I absolutely love your gallery wall. Love the white against the warm wall color, love the words and love the layout of the frames. I need to get a little bolder and think outside of the symmetrical box. Thanks for inspiring!

    Sharon @ mrs. hines class

  26. Hi Marty! Oh, this turned out WONDERFUL! I love the wall. And you did it on such a great budget!Thank you for sharing with us at TTF. Have a great day!

  27. Hi! I am returning for a visit to let you know that I am featuring this post on this week’s TTF linky party!

  28. That looks great! I love the combination of photos and words! I would love for you to share this (and any other house projects) at my “May House Par-tay” at http://www.cheapcraftymama.com!

  29. Love this. I pinned it here. http://pinterest.com/pin/165296248793657449/

  30. Found you on “Whatever you want Wednesday”……glad I did. I love this, thanks for all the instructions.

  31. Wow! Love this, please share it! Link it up with me on my Wow Us Wednesday, ok? Over at http://www.familyhomeandlife.com

  32. Love the addition of the Vinyl lettering, totally takes this wall to the next level! Thanks for sharing.
    Visitng from Shabby Creek Cottage.

  33. Thanks for linking at Wow Us Wednesday!

  34. FABULOUS!!! That photo wall is perfect!! Love each of the words!

    Thanks for sharing at The DIY Dreamer… From Dream To Reality!

  35. This turned out great!

    I would love for you to link this to my Flaunt It Friday link party! Also, follow my new blog Blissful Bucket List! :)

    http://www.blissfulbucketlist.com/

  36. Love the idea of combining frames and words. It looks wonderful!

  37. Fabulous! Well worth your work. Thanks for sharing this. Gail (BibleLoveNotes.com)

  38. New follower from Keeping it Simple. Love for you to stop by and return the follow. Hosting Mom’s Monday Mingle. Love for you to join!

    http://www.thenaptimereview.com

  39. Your gallery wall is wonderful! Thank you for the *how tos*!!!!

  40. I love your gallery wall! I like how your husband helped with your project. I can’t believe the cricut machine made those words. That is so cool!

  41. I adore your gallery wall! Great job! Thank you for sharing this post at my Make it Pretty Monday at The Dedicated House! It means the world. Hope to see you again next week. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  42. The wall looks amazing!! I found your blog via the Mom’s Mingle and am happy to be your newest follower! I’d love for you to follow me back at http://www.two-in-diapers.blogspot.com. :)

  43. That is so cute. I love how large and in charge it is! Awesome, I think it would be cool around some large wall vinyl as well like I did here in this post
    http://smallfineprint.com/living-room-vinyl/

  44. Love your wall. Very nice.

  45. I’ve seen this on Pinterest! You did a wonderful job, all of you! I’m jealous =)

  46. This gallery was is amazing! Thanks for sharing it.

  47. Your wall looks AMAZING! I can tell that a lot of time and love went into this project! Found you at I Gotta Create. I’m your newest follower and would love to have you stop by for a visit! Happy 4th of July! Judy

  48. I love family walls. Yours is great

  49. Wow, that is some gallery wall! I have been attempting to make one in our den but it is nowhere near as gorgeous as yours. Well done to you both on such a gorgeous creation!

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

  50. This is fabulous, what a great look. Excellent work. This caught my attention over at a crafty soiree.
    Maria Crafty Chic

  51. I love your wall, it is wonderful! I’ve been wanting to do this as well. I just got my Cricut yesterday, so I’m ready now. Thanks for sharing!
    ~ Terrie
    HearthandWhimsy.com

  52. Wow! That’s absolutely amazing. Great job! Thanks for sharing at our Handmade Tursdays party

  53. Oh my gosh.. Marty… this looks amazing… Super impressed… Great job!! Hoping over from the dedicated house and following you now..

    Sure hope you’ll stop by at Colours dekor :) Have a fabulous week ahead :)

  54. The wall looks so darn cute! I can’t believe how inexpensive it was! We absolutely love it! We are so glad that you linked up to our “Strut Your Stuff Saturday”. Thanks for coming and we hope you’ll come back next week! -The Sisters

  55. Oh that is the perfect tough to this photo wall! I think this is fab! I love it! :) We’d love it if you’d share this at our link party – Home is Where the Heart is! http://www.homesteadsimple.com/home-is-where-the-heart-is-link-it-up-wednesdays-1/
    and any other posts you’d like to share that have to do with homesteading and homemaking!

  56. I absolutely love your wall! I featured you on this week’s Blog Stalking Thursday! Stop by and grab a feature button! Thanks again for sharing. http://thecraftyblogstalker.blogspot.com/2012/07/blog-stalking-thursday-49.html

  57. I see there are a TON of readers that agree…this is FABULOUS! Featuring you on Saturday! XO, Aimee

  58. The wall looks amazing! I love the idea. Thanks for posting on Saturday Show and Tell. I hope you’ll be back this week.
    -Mackenzie
    http://www.cheeriosandlattes.com

  59. Just to let you know that you have been featured on my link party – http://serenityyou.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/serenity-saturday-48.html

    Natasha xx

  60. my favorite wall !!!!!!
    http://babyemilycloset.blogspot.co.uk

  61. Wow – what a beautiful gallery wall with such great sentiment you have pulled together. Thanks so much for sharing it at our link party. Take care, Laura

  62. Marty,

    Your gallery wall is amazing! Those spray painted frames (and mats too — I need to remember that idea) with the vinyl looks perfect!

    Thanks so much for sharing at our spray paint link party!

    :)

    Linda

    • Thank you, Linda. I thought it was pretty clever to spray paint the mats, too, and I have no idea where the idea came from! My husband is a painter so I’m happy for him to do the actual spraying himself! Hope you’ll come back and visit again soon!

  63. Marty, This was a very informative post. I have been thinking of doing something similar and did not know exactly how to get started. Thanks to your post; I now have some answers about how to get started. Your wall turned out really great; it’s amazing how inexpensively you were able to invest in it. Thank you for posting.

    • Hi, Debbie. You commented on my family gallery wall and I just wanted to thank you for the compliment. I’d love to hear how your wall turns out! It’s one of my most favorite projects.
      Marty@Marty’s Musings

  64. Do you use Cricut craft room? Its on the cricut site, you can load all of your carts for the cricuit to the room and never have to unload again. It is so easy I love it! I can cut from several carts all at the same time now Give it a try if you haven’t yet. Cricut.com and its free

    • Hi, Janice. I’m way late on replying to comments on my blog but I’m here now! You asked whether I use Cricut craft room and I haven’t yet. I’m kinda overwhelmed with blogging and other DIY projects. I actually bought a used Gypsy but I haven’t had time to figure that out, either! I have a scrapbook retreat next month and I’m ready for it!
      Marty@Marty’s Musings

  65. Marty!! I just love this wall and the vinyl letters really make it something special. *pinned*

    Thanks for sharing at Throwback Thursdays.

    xoxo
    Denyse

  66. I love, love your wall. Your family is beautiful. I am working on a gallery wall in our family room. It has been a lot of fun. I spray painted some old frames I had and bought some at the Goodwill……a great way to save money.

    Debbi

  67. I like your gallery wall, it looks great! I couldn’t plan one like you did, mine would have to evolve more than anything… oh well – yours turned out really good!

    • Hi, Heather. Ours did evolve somewhat in that we just took out a bunch of frames, moved them around and hoped for the best. We only had a fairly small area to fit it in so it did take some decision making skills! Thanks for visiting my blog!

  68. I love this wall! I can’t wait to start my own! I also love the wall color. Do you mind me asking what it is.?

    • Glad you like it, Debbie. Here’s the info on the den color: Behr Interior Satin Enamel Paint and Primer (brand) in Sherwin Williams #6095 Toasty (color)

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