Gallery walls can work wonders for your living room, transforming a blank and tired wall into a creative masterpiece. More than just a display of your most cherished memories, they can energise your home, filling an otherwise empty space with a hive of colour, warmth and above all else, personality.
Using your sofa as your focal point, discover how you can create a striking gallery wall in your living room and get inspired by our own examples below.
6 quick steps to creating your gallery wall
The perfect gallery wall doesn’t happen overnight. It takes careful thought and consideration, meticulous detailing and a bit of maths. Here are our top tips for getting started on creating your stunning gallery wall.
1. Make a mood board
Before you hammer the first nail into the wall, get inspired by creating a mood board on Pinterest or by doing it the old fashioned way. Focus on one overall tone, such as bright and energetic, or mellow and soothing. To achieve this, it helps to pick an anchor piece as your starting point, remembering to include other elements such as mirrors or sculptures to bring variation and levels.
2. How to choose your frames
In the midst of your creativity, don’t overlook the importance of choosing the right frames. Start by choosing your look – for example, traditional and vintage, or modern and minimal – and stick to it. Consider the rest of the room, too, to make sure the wall is in keeping – a thick white frame would look great in a modernist and minimal space but would look odd in more luxurious and ornate surroundings.
3. Know how big you want to go
When it comes to the size of your gallery wall, the only limit is your imagination. Keep it within a set space – such as the width of your sofa or between two windows – to make it a big and bold focal point, or be brave and make a masterpiece of the full wall.
4. Plan your layout on the floor
The best practice for mapping out your gallery wall is to place your frames, mirrors and other decorations flat on the floor to play around with the layout. The selected pieces should be situated close together, with a one to two-inch gap between them.
5. Where to put your gallery wall
Gallery walls work best when they frame an object, such as your sofa, to bring the room together. However, it’s best to avoid placing it behind objects that could make it look cluttered or detract from its magic, such as a TV.
6. How to hang your frames
Nothing beats tried-and-tested picture hooks, which are secured with a nail. If you want your pictures to hang in a straight line, tie some string between the two farthest hooks to act as a guide – but check it’s level first. Adjust the string on the back of your frames to alter their height. If you rent your home, there are alternatives to nails, including removable strips, tape and stick-on hooks.
How to make your gallery and sofa work together
With the blueprints all planned out, it’s time to get inspired by picturing how your chosen gallery wall will look framed against your most prized possession – your sofa.
Go glamorous and vintage
When working around a vintage sofa, such as the Pemberton, aim for chunky gold frames, ornate mirrors and rustic maps. They’ll look great set against either a statement wall, painted in a neutral colour like grey, or finished in floral wallpaper. Place an accent armchair with wooden bookcases at either side to effortlessly sink into the past.
Reach back to retro
Bright, bold and packed full of colour, retro features can truly energise your space. Head to your local art gallery to find abstract artwork or buy prints of your favourite old school books, films or music artists. This style of gallery wall works especially well framed against a bold sofa, such as the Cricket, or sat against an exposed brick wall.