Do you want to create a picture wall? Naturally, we, who love to decorate with pictures and photo frames, think that picture walls are great. We know how much it does for a room and its whole appearance when you get the right picture in the right place. And furthermore, with a picture wall, you have the opportunity to show off several of your pictures in the same place!
We usually say that there aren't any rules when it comes to creating a picture wall, but rather it is your own fancies and tastes which set the rules. And so it is, naturally! We are all different, and have different preferences, so personal taste must have its place. Nonetheless, it doesn't hurt that there are a few guidelines that you can take a look at and have good use of. We have collected them here, to make it as simple as possible for you to get started.
Subjects and picture frames in an ensemble, for a harmonious impression
Because a picture wall comprises several pictures, it can also involve different picture frames and different subjects. By this, we mean that both the picture frames and the subjects will affect the appearance of the wall, so it can be good to consider what kind of impression you want the constellation as a whole to give.
As a rule of thumb, we usually say that if the subjects have different colours and styles, you should choose a uniform set of picture frames. Otherwise, it can seem a bit "messy" and be hard for the eye to process the resulting impression. Two or three colour combinations in the subjects are usually adequate. On the other hand, if the images you are framing are uniform – perhaps several quotations, pictures of flowers, or black and white illustrations – then there is a greater possibility to vary the appearance and style of the frames, without risking it becoming messy.
If you really want to go for it, maybe in a children's room, where playful and colourful is exactly what you are looking for, you can of course stretch all boundaries. Why not mix up subjects and picture frames in all the colours of the rainbow?
What do you want to accentuate?
Regardless of whether you want to create a uniform or a more varied picture wall, you can, in any case, use different types of image. If you want to frame posters, there are a lot of options. If you want to have very personal pictures, go with enlargement of your own pictures. Portraits, nature pictures, funny moments. Everything goes! Think about the pleasure of reliving old memories, every day.
These days, it's popular to frame different types of quote. Why not give a personal twist to the whole thing, and instead of buying a ready-made quote, write down the names of people who mean a lot for you, recipes of your favourite dishes, or places you've been – print and frame!
Do you have children? If so, maybe you are the proud owner of piles of drawings that you don't really know what to do with? Use these for your picture wall. You and the rest of the family can enjoy the children's works, and you won't have to deal with the guilt of not making the most of the drawings.
Work with lines
To create balance among the pictures, it can be good to work with lines in different ways. The most common ways are to work with base lines, middle lines or upper-edge lines, or to hang the pictures vertically.
When you hang up your pictures with the base line as your starting point, you ensure that the bottom edge of all the pictures follows the same line. If you use this method, you don't need to hang up your pictures on the wall, but you can instead place them on a piece of furniture (which then comprises the line itself). You can also place the pictures on a picture shelf. The base line can be an especially good starting point for bigger pictures.
The other method we'd like to tell you about is to use the pictures' middle line. In this case, it is the middle point of all pictures which is the common factor – in other words, you imagine that there is a line going straight through the middle of all the pictures, and you place them according to that. The middle line ought to be about 1.2-1.4 metres up the wall. In a room with normal ceiling height, that means roughly half the distance from the floor to the ceiling.
You can even go off the upper edge of the pictures, and draw (or visualise) a so-called upper-edge line. An advantage with this method is that you can use picture frames with unique forms, without it feeling messy. The method is also suitable if you have a high number of pictures that you want to put up.
If you want to hang two pictures vertically, the principle is the same as when you go off the middle line, apart from the fact that you must imagine the line vertically, instead of horizontally.
Higgledy-piggledy or military precision?
Okay, now you have a little better grasp of the different lines you can use, but if you don't actually want a line of pictures, but in-fact want a little group of them – how should you think then?
Either you go entirely on instinct and set up the pictures according to what you think looks good. That creates a playful and unique impression, and works well if you like to have free rein.
If you prefer to have a little more of a sense of order about your installation, you can choose to set the pictures up like the method above, but also to ensure that the distance between all of the pictures is the same. This will give a slightly more "controlled" impression, unlike when you hang them completely freely.
The final method we want to mention begins with you imagining a picture frame around all the pictures, holding them together. You can certainly use both square and rectangular picture frames in this instance, but make sure that the outermost lines are straight and in line with each other.
Coordination with other decorations
Do you have a completely blank wall that you want to use as your picture wall? In that case, you don't need to take into consideration anything else, and can focus solely on the pictures and making them work as a harmonious whole. On the other hand, if you are going to set the pictures up over a piece of furniture, for example, a sofa, then it can be good to take into account the width of the sofa, and then centre your picture wall according to that. You should preferably hang your pictures so that the distance from them to the ceiling is longer than that to the furniture underneath. That usually creates a good balance.
Some concluding words
Finally, we'd like to send you off with some tips for the road:
- If you hang two pictures of different sizes vertically, hang the bigger picture on top.
- Use a template (or look at one, at least for inspiration) for picture walls.
- Begin by laying out the pictures on the floor, and see which combination is most aesthetic.
- Be careful when you take measurements, and use a spirit level.
- Adjust the distance between pictures according to the room – the bigger the room, the more space you can afford between the pictures.