How to Make a Gallery Wall with Lisa Dawson

Interiors blogger Lisa Dawson talks to RoomFifty about her top tips for crafting your own gallery wall!

I’ve always loved a gallery wall, and my home is most definitely testament to that fact.  Empty walls are all well and good, but you can’t beat the impact of an art display when you walk into a room.  They create interest, provide a talking point, are visually stimulating and can create a feature in smaller spaces, such as hallways, that usually would be fairly bland.  They are also an excellent way of utilising your own artistic talents – bringing a wall gallery together can be a therapeutic task and a joy to create.

How to create a gallery wall is the most commonly asked question on my blog and Instagram feed.  I’m always quick to reassure people that it’s not nearly as difficult as it may appear and can be an excellent way of displaying your own individuality within your space.

Here’s my top tips on how to get it right.

1 Keep It Neutral

Gallery walls are in themselves an artwork.  Sticking with a neutral background rather than a busy wallpaper means that you can view the individual pieces to their best advantage.  

2 Be Brave

Walls are made to be adorned, in my opinion.  And you don’t have to stick to art alone.  Think outside of the box – I have decorative plates, my Dad’s old Les Paul guitar, neon, even a flying dolphin on my walls.  Mixed in with frames, they add interest and individuality.

3 To Theme Or Not To Theme?

Sticking to a theme on your walls, such as monochrome or a particular subject, can look really good.  My living room is currently home to wall of art depicting women which is really effective.  I’ve also hung a set of five art deco mirrors – individually they are pretty boring; hung together they form a cohesive display.  

4  Juxtapose 

In my opinion, juxtaposition is what makes a really good gallery wall.  Bringing together all your favourite prints and mixing them up always creates an appealing focal point.  Use photography alongside vintage oil prints;  typography next to illustration;  limited edition beside a High Street find.

5  Plan It Out

The best gallery walls are structured and squared.  This makes your eye fix on the display and not wander, meaning that you get the full impact of what you are seeing.  A simple tip to do this is to lay out your proposed art on the floor (a rug is perfect for this task).  Slot the art works into place, move them around until they fit and then put them up, one by one, starting in the bottom left hand corner.

6 Take It To The Floor

There’s no rules when it comes to creating a gallery wall.  Who says you need to start at eye level?  Taking the display up from the floor above the skirting board is hugely impactful and makes the most of the space that you have, whilst at the same time heightening the ceiling.

And the most important thing when planning your gallery wall?  Only include prints and items that you really love.  If you stick to this rule, you’ll curate a display that will always make you happy!