Furniture, Home Improvement, Interior Decorating

These are a few of my favorite things

I’ve been working on creating a gallery wall of some sort in my living room for months now. I am not one of those people who is naturally talented at gallery walls. In fact, I almost always hate them when I’m finished with them.

We’d hung a gallery wall in our bedroom that we left up for no time at all because B and I both ended up not liking the way it looked:

20120624-210044.jpg

This one was just so blah and symmetrical…

Even though I’ve been a gallery wall failure, I always admire them. I decided to try again in our living room and boy was it a process.

This is the wall I started with:

Child's Desk shelves

OK, so that’s an awful photo. But basically it had one large canvas piece on it I got from Home Goods. I love the painting, but it doesn’t look nice above our mint couch, which is now on the wall in our living room. Plus, it didn’t fill the space on the wall enough.

new couch

Here’s the first iteration of a gallery wall I did:

Gallery-Wall_photosA few things to note:

  1. Look how far this room has come! Holy smokes, I still can’t believe it. (Better photos at the end of the post, I swear)
  2. I was trying to decide if I wanted to abandon my mint curtains for white curtains, hence why they are the wrong way on the window. I got a lot of questions about that from guests 🙂

I bought all of those frames from Home Goods and really liked the mixture of wood, metals, rustic and glam. But I just never loved it. I think part of me is sick of seeing the same photos over and over again. We’ve been married for 3+ years and engaged for 5+ years, so the fancy engagement and wedding pictures are old news at this point. But they are still the most frame-worthy photos we have and they are always what I resort to.

gallery-wall_photos_close

To get this arrangement, I laid all of the frames out on the floor and put a lot of thought into which frame went where. This ended with a mostly symmetrical arrangement.

Here was my beef with this wall:

  1. Too symmetrical
  2. Too photo-centric
  3. Old photos

Really, it just seemed like I was trying too hard. At least to me it did. I left it like this for months until I could figure out what I wanted to do differently. If you notice the horizontal photo that was displayed vertically — yes, this was left this way for months, too.

I started to think I wanted to redo some of the gallery wall after B’s birthday. I gave him an amazing print of our pup, Remmy. It’s basically the best gift I’ve ever given anyone. 

Birthday Portrait

We hung it immediately in place of one of our real photos, because how could we not?

It wasn’t until after Christmas that I had the idea to completely redo the gallery wall with art only. You see, B gave me two amazing maps of Maryland. The big kahuna was a map from 1880 — holy old! We had the map custom framed and needed a spot to hang it. B wanted to hang it over our console table, but I’ve got my heart set on finding the perfect mirror to reflect all of the natural light from our bay window. The map has mint and pink in the outlines of counties and cities, so I thought it would look marvelous over our couch.

I started messing around with the wall little by little, pulling down artwork from other spots in the house.

Gallery wall_adding in art

Finally, I just decided to go for it. All of the photos came down and the nails came out of the wall.

gallery wall_map is up

I started my placing everything on the floor, but again I made the design so symmetrical. So I hung up the map (my anchor piece) and two other pieces of art and left it alone. It looked like this for a week before I decided to do what I do best and just wing it.

At this point the wall was already riddled with nail holes that needed to be touched up, so I just went for it. Everything was added one by one. The spacing isn’t even, the whole wall isn’t symmetrical… and I LOVE IT. It just fills the large wall so nicely without feeling too huge.

Gallery Wall_Complete

You’ll see a lot of things I’ve shared before on the blog:

  1. Sentimental Map Art
  2. Love Pallet Sign
  3. Do What You Love Print
  4. Remmy Print

Gallery Wall_zoomed in

You’ll also see a bunch of other art I’ve collected over the years:

  1. Golden Pond canvas print (Home Goods)
  2. Shadow box full of roses B has given me
  3. My two new Maryland maps
  4. A graphic print of dogs my coworker gave me
  5. Two bird paintings from one of my favorite artists

Basically, it is a wall of my favorite things: dogs, birds, Maryland and love 🙂 I seriously couldn’t be happier with how this turned out.

Funny enough, I’m sure it isn’t 100 percent complete. As you can see, I left room around the edges for small additions. I’d like to do a more colorful print, replacing the Do What You Love print. And I am always checking out Pratt Creek Art for more bird paintings.

Plus, I really need to patch the holes you can still see and hang everything (in the exact same spot) maybe a tad bit straighter ;p

On the whole, It really does so much for this room. I love my gray walls, but with nothing on them they can be quite dreary. This art wall adds much-needed color and pizzaz to my favorite room in the house — a room that really has come a long way.

It just goes to show you that rushing into designing a room doesn’t always end with the best result. We’ve been in our house for three years now and this room is now just starting to feel like it is almost finished. All it needs is a mirror, and I am one happy home owner!

Gallry Wall_Living Room

Next week I’ll share the redo of our master bedroom. It’s not complete yet, but it looks a lot better than it did a month ago.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

 

 

 

 

 

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Life

Busy. Busy. Busy.

Hello blog,

I have not forgotten about you, although I haven’t posted in a few days. It’s been busy around our house with a lot of non-blog worthy stuff, and the next two weeks don’t look like they will be any slower. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day — my favorite holiday! Yay! Then Monday is my birthday. Double yay — well for me anyway. Double trouble for the hubby. He’ll manage though. We have lots of celebrations planned, including a Valentine’s Dinner tomorrow night, dinner with family on Saturday, birthday dinner No. 1 on Sunday, birthday dinner No. 2 on Monday, followed by Monday Night Trivia, and then a fondue birthday celebration on the following Saturday. I am full just thinking about it!

I consider my birthday celebrations officially started with the receiving of my first gift last night…. from Marlboro Cigarettes. Yes, you heard right. I get presents from Marlboro. Let’s clear up a few things: 1. I don’t smoke. 2. I’ve never smoked anything in my life. 3. I never plan on smoking anything in my life. To answer the obvious questions — why the heck is Marlboro sending you a birthday gift  — well, I haven’t a freakin’ clue! I somehow ended up on their mailing list and they like to send me gifts. In the past I got a sweet bottle opener that attaches to a bar. Too bad I donated it before we got our house and our bar. Such is life.

I know, I know… you are dying to know what they could have possible sent, right? Well, this little box arrived at my mom’s place last night. She texted me to tell me she thought maybe Marlboro was sending me free samples of cigarettes. That idea in itself was absurd, so I told her to open it and find out.

Marlboro Swag

Check out my AWESOME birthday gift.  Yes, that’s right. Yours truly just got some SWEET AVIATORS from a cigarette company. Randommmmm.

Marlboro Swag

I’ve got some bad news for Marlboro (who will likely remove me from their list should they ever stumble upon this post): those are sweet aviators and I will TOTALLY be rocking them this summer, but I am still not gonna pick up smoking. I’ve got enough bad habits as it is. Good try though! Maybe I’ll buy a candy cigarette and fake smoke in my aviators just for effect… but that still seems unlikely.

In other news, we are oober close to replacing some of the doors in our house. We are aiming to replace our front and car port doors probably in March and I cannot wait!!! My stepdad is going to help us with the install so I actually get to learn what the heck it takes to put a new door in. Sweeeeeet. The hubby has already warned me we will likely scuff up some of our walls and that I need to prepare myself. Good thing he did because it would and will totally stress me out.

In other other news, we started a trivia team with my neighbors and a few friends this past Monday night and we won Third Place on our first go at it! Go us.

OK, OK. Enough rambling. Happy Wednesday.