Thursday, June 16, 2011

Accent Photo Gallery Wall

It's been a while since I have written.  I have been trying to focus.

But - one of the things I have been really wanting to do is create a focal point in this awkward nook.  And my latest passion that has taken control of me is photography - so I need a place to put my pictures.  So I give you - my Gallery Wall!!!

So - to start - I go to my ever impressive - super wonderful woman - Ana White!  She has these $10 Ledges.  When I first saw them - I bookmarked them and knew I had to do it.  But I wanted to add a twist.

Then I had this idea of doing a focal wall with wall paper.  I found a few that I pinned on my Pinterest - you can find them here.

So - here is my random nook.  When you walk up my stairs - there it sits.  Awkward, it housed a cheap bench and an old college trunk.  It kept junk.

So to start my adventure - I marked my wall of where I wanted my wall paper.


I was trying to figure out how big I wanted it to cover the wall - so I looked at 3 strips wide and 4.  I went with the larger size!  I did 4 strips.

Then I picked my wallpaper - ok ok - my wonderful husband picked it - yes i'll admit he has better taste than me - we make a good team!

This is totally my first time wallpapering.  And - I will not be doing this professionally any time soon.  So I gathered my tools.  First things first - I had to get four equal pieces - that also lined up. So I measured my height - marked my line and cut.

But - because it was a Damask pattern - It had to line up perfect. The paper that I got (from Sherman Williams) had these awesome markings that helped line it up.

Now for the wallpaper tools.  My mom let me borrow hers.  I couldn't tell you what any of them did!

To hand wallpaper - you need water.  So - we got a cooler first.  Guess what - didn't fit our wallpaper.  So we ended up - ok - don't laugh - using a baby tub!  It worked great - I didn't take pictures though.

So - we put the first one up....yeah - not perfect - took a lot of rolling.  We lined it up with the corner that we marked.

Here it is with all four pieces up - we got the hang of it at the end. You really need to make sure every piece is wet!!!  So we took a soaked washcloth and kept it close!

Next step was to frame it out.  We bought four of these blocks and painted them white.


Then we just did straight cuts with with some decorative molding.

So we just sat and looked and said how pretty it was...did we want to attempt ledges - what if we messed up?  Wall paper is SO not cheap!

Nope - they look just fine!!!!  I built three - but they didn't really fit all that well - so we went with two.  Good thing - the first one wasn't all that great.  So it worked well with two.  We measured the ledges so that there was about 7 inches away from the edge of the outside frame.  Then we tried to hit the stud's - and anchored 3-4 screws into the wall.

Then I went to my favorite store - Salvation Army - and bought a bunch of frames and sprayed them all white.

This is my first attempt at mitered corners - I think it worked out pretty well.  We used an expensive molding - it was decorative pine dental molding.  It was $10 a piece.  My husband came in the car with them (after we decided to do cheap molding), looks at me and says 'don't mess it up'.  Not his exact words - but you get his drift!

Total cost:
Wallpaper - $70 (Have to buy a double roll - lot's left over)
Outer frame - $30
Ledge - had leftover wood - so free
Trim: $20  ($10 a piece)
All Picture Frames: $40
Total $160 - not bad for a nice focal point.

Now the hard part - picking the pictures!

If you look at Pottery Barn though 2, 4 inch ledges would cost $110, plus tax and shipping.  For me - just the shelves - $20!  And they are more decorative with the fancy molding - and - I can look at it and say - I made that!  There's are 4 feet long - mine were 6 feet long!

Linking up here:
Be Different Act Normal
The Creative Crate


  1. LOVE the look and the finish of it all!! You really did a wonderful job on your project! Great idea to frame a section in wall paper - and not do the entire wall! Shelf finish and frames look terrific! LOVE it!

    :D Lynda

  2. This turned out beautifully, good job

  3. This is just gorgeous. I like how the frames are resting on the shelves. I have always thought of a gallery wall, but didn't want to hang each photo. This solves that problem in style!

  4. Kinda like mine.. I was inspired by Pottery Barn years ago! I really love the wall paper and the large frame.. nice touch!!!! Beautiful Job Carrie and Mike!

  5. This is absolutely positively fantastic!! I love the wallpaper choice and it is just the perfect thing to have in your nook. I love your chandelier too by the way! :-) I'm going to be sharing this project on our Facebook wall so be sure to stop by and grab a "Featured At" button and thanks so much for joining Inspiration Friday!

  6. This is so adorable! What an awesome idea! I too love Thrift store frames...can't go wrong :)

  7. i love this! great job... looks BEAUTIFUL!

  8. This is amazing. It really makes a statement. I am totally using this idea, thanks for sharing.



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