Friday, March 2, 2012

How to Make a Photo Wall

So I interrupt my normal recipes to share one of the few crafty things I have ever done! 

A Photo Wall!

 
I have done this twice now, remaking the first photo wall when we moved apartments last fall. 

It was really fun both hunting for the frames and seeing the finished product and knowing I made it! 

This is just MY way to make a photo wall, there are obviously lots of other ways too!

First:
Pick a place in your home where you want a wall of photos. Pay attention to height of the area and whatever else is around it so that it fits in. Once you have decided measure the space so you know how many frames you will need to fill it. It will just be approximate so other than the overall measurement don't worry. 

 Second:
Begin hunting for fun and unique frames from thrift stores, family, Ross, Ikea or wherever else you can find some! Try to find some cool shapes like ovals and don't be afraid to take a mirror out of a frame, buy frames without glass or things that aren't even frames like mine below! They will all have photos over them eventually so it won't matter!

Remember to look for frames that already have the hardware to be hung, because that makes it so much faster and easier! And if they can go both horizontally and vertically that is a plus!

Additionally, other items can grace a photo wall too, like a large letter, small knick knacks, mirrors etc so keep your eyes peeled as you treasure hunt. 

This first frame-y thing I found at Ross for around 40 cents and thought it looked cool. I put a picture on top of that thing (although you could leave it as is!). 

The second frame I found at a thrift store and it wasn't a frame but had a picture of a child praying on glass. I removed the glass and then just added a picture to it!

The light wooden frame is the cheap kind from Ikea and the smaller one I found at a thrift store and repainted.

Third:
Clean frames, spray paint desired colors. Sand down if necessary. Add hanging hardware if necessary.  Again, don't be afraid. I did my first wall all gold and my second wall I repainted some of the gold frames pink, blue and purple so you can always change it if you don't like it!

Fourth:
Print off pictures to fill your frames. I recommend printing several more than you will need since you may decide to flip frames horizontally or vertically based on your arrangement. Make sure you measure your frame openings too so you don't print all 4x6 and then realize your frames are 5x7! Nothing is more frustrating than having 12 frames filled and 1 missing the perfect sized photograph. 

Fifth:

Fill your frames with your photos. They can still be changed if you decide you would prefer a different one but go ahead and do the best you can to pick photos you like. 

Make sure the photos matter to you! They can be photos of events, family, friends or places. Throw in a quote from your favorite book, scripture, music lyrics or a date that matters to you such as a wedding date or birth of a baby. These different images will help add visual interest and make the photo wall more meaningful to you. 

This is my grandparent's wedding photo. I love it because I loved them.

I love this saying from The Help. 
I sent this to my mom and brother too, so it reminds me of them. 
And that I am kind, smart AND important!

One of my favorite wedding photos. When we became "Mr. and Mrs. Thomas" so happy and holding hands as we began our new life! Okay, I'll stop being sappy now.

Sixth:
Play with the arrangement of your frames. I used masking tape to recreate the size of the wall on my floor so I could move frames back and forth while I decided.

You can see that this arrangement, these frames and these photos are not the same as the ones shown in the first photo. I obviously kept changing my mind a lot! 

Seventh:

Start by hanging one frame and working your way until you  have recreated the wall you made on your floor. I think this is definitely a two person job, to make sure things are hung straight and to hand the other person frames and nails to hang. 

This was the version I had in my last apartment.
 All gold hues with mirrors, a giant T and some cool keys!
 I also did it more "randomly" then the square arrangement I now have in my apartment.
 
Finally...
Enjoy your creation!

I think I took this picture crooked...the entire photo wall isn't crooked, I promise!

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