It is no secret. I love me a gallery wall. Some might call it a borderline obsession/problem. Pretty much every wall in my house is sporting some collection of frames. I can’t help myself.
There is just something about them; they make me so happy. Maybe it is because they appeal to my severe indecisiveness. I don’t have to choose one piece of art or one family photograph… I can have them ALL (insert maniacal Muuuuuwahhhhaaahhhaaaa laugh here).
But here is a little fun fact you might not know about me: as much as I LOVE a good gallery wall, I also love walls adorned with other forms of wall candy or *gasp* nothing at all.
Like check out this breathtaking, beautiful, I-want-to-rub-my-face-all-over-that-couch space:
Nary a gallery wall in sight and I still L.O.V.E. it.
And don’t even get me started on this one:
Simple. Clean. Perfect.
So when contemplating how we should go about adding life to our dreary dining room, I decided that I wanted to do something different; something more restrained. Something other than a gallery wall.
But what else is there? Yeah. Good question. I had to ask myself that very same thing and then I had to do some homework. On Pinterest. While drinking wine. Oh if only trigonometry had come so easily to me.
My “research” generated a lot of interesting possibilities. And because I’m nice like that, I thought I would share those ideas with you. You know, just in case you are similarly suffering from a bad case of gallery wall infestationitis (No? Just me?).
What Do You Do When a Gallery Wall Just Won’t Do?
You hang large-scale art: My favorite non-gallery wall solution is to use one GIGANTIC piece of art. And while it always depends on the space, the general rule of thumb is – the bigger the better.
Large scale art makes a statement. It is bold, in your face and makes you pay attention to it. Kind of like Kanye West. Except that large scale art is generally pleasant and enjoyable and does not have douche-bag like tendencies. Keep in mind that I am using the term “art” loosely. Art can be anything. Obviously, it can be a painting (like the one in the image above that I would pretty much give up my first born to acquire) but it can also be an over-sized photograph of your kid or travel destination, or one single letter or number in a great typeface or even just a massive map a’ la my girl Emily Henderson (see image below).
Moral of the Story: Go big or go home. Whatever art form you choose—make it big and bold and make sure you LOVE it. Because…well because…Kanye. You won’t be able to ignore it, so you better love it (I’m talking to you Kim K.).
You hang a mirror: They are pretty and they reflect light. Win-win.
Plus, you can find really big ones for pretty affordable prices these days. Unless you are me. If you are me, you find and fall in love with the most expensive ones on offer at Anthropologie. Like this:
Why am I cursed with amazing taste in mirrors? Whhhhhhhhhhhhhhyyyyyy?
Moral of the Story: Mirrors are beautiful, but as it turns out, expensive. Marry someone rich.
You hang anything 3-D: Do you have a collection of beautiful, colorful baskets lying about? Vintage wooden surfboards? Antique Oars? Yeah. Me neither. But, man…if you did, you could slap them on a wall and they would look fantastic.
Again it doesn’t really seem to matter what it is, beautiful objects are still beautiful when hung on the wall. They might even become more beautiful. I recently visited my most favorite place in the world (besides Target and Starbucks…duh!) and found myself loving on the 3-D wall displays in one of my favorite shops.
Q: What do old Chinese wagon wheels, shoe forms, tree stumps and rusty garden tools have in common?
A: They all look beautiful when hung on the wall.
Moral of the Story: If it is beautiful, but not a living, breathing person, hang it on a wall.
You hang a rug: A Rug? Yes. You can hang a rug on the wall. This may seem weird at first, because it is, but hear me out. Rugs are beautiful and expensive, no? Yet we abuse them. We walk all over them. We cover them with old recliners and cheap Swedish furniture. And much to our chagrin, we have even seen our darling children massage the contents of their nose into their fine threads.We pay little heed to their delicate fibers and intricate weaves. Why not give a rug the respect that it deserves? The time is now, people! And if my little speech has not convinced you, perhaps the following images will:
Moral of the Story: Walking on rugs is so 2014. Hanging them on your wall just makes sense. Sorta.
You cover your wall in wallpaper: Wallpaper is back. Actually, full disclosure, it has been back for a while now (years!) but I swear the selections just keep getting better and better. The options are truly endless. Admittedly though, wallpaper can be a big commitment and, like anything, it can go very, very wrong (for proof of that just check out our failed wallpaper attempt in our bedroom). But wallpaper also has magical powers. It can take a room from blah to bliss in 2.2 seconds hours days. Need more proof? I give you exhibit A:
I would give you additional evidence but, frankly, you shouldn’t need it. That wall paper pictured above is marriage-material. It is that good.
Moral of the Story: Buy me that wallpaper for Christmas.
You start weaving or you support your local weavers: Woven wall hangings are quickly becoming the Emma Stone of the decor world. They are adorable but not precious, fun but not flamboyant, chic but not pretentious. So you should probably just go ahead and buy one today. You can tell me later how it is always the first thing people compliment you on when they enter your house. If you are feeling really bohemian and crafty…you can make one yourself.
Not gonna lie, I like a woven wall hanging in theory, but it does feel a tad trendy. I think I might get a bit sick of it after a while, but that’s just me. I get sick of pretty much everything. Including gallery walls…which (and we have come full circle) is precisely why I am writing this post.
Moral of the Story: Buy a cheap woven wall hanging, unless you are a real-life gypsy. In that case invest in a good one.
So based on all these options, if you were me, what would you do to liven up my dining room?
Or maybe a better question is, what do you think we actually ended up doing? (Yup. It is already done)
Wallpaper? Amazing Art? A handmade woven wall hanging?
I can tell you this…you will be surprised. And yet not at all.
Big reveal coming at you soon…stay tuned friends!