Design Hadithi | How To Hang Up a Gallery Wall

OF COURSE I TALK TO MYSELF. sometimes I need expert advice!

If you have a ton of pictures, artefacts and the wall space then you need to put up a gallery wall like yesterday.

Step one of how to hang up a gallery wall is get inspiration… pinspiration to be exact!

This is the point where I just come out and ask you – if you aren’t on Pinterest then what are you doing with your life!!!? Whenever I’m looking for inspiration be it on decor, recipes… life, moming (yes it’s a word), jokes on lifing (this is also a word and it’s basically the act of living…you are welcome) and moming – I go on Pinterest. So Pinterest is a great place to find inspiration for your gallery wall.

I recently had my house painted and I knew I wanted new placement for all my pictures and tchotchkes … which by the way brought me to the realisation that I don’t have as much of a handle on the whole ‘bring one thing home, let one go‘ as I thought!

I don’t think I get enough credit for the fact that I do all of this unmedicated!

So as the house was being painted I asked the painters to pull out all the nails and hooks *whispering* (of which there were many) * end of whispering* and fill out the 29,000 holes I had left on various walls – because all is not well if I’m not moving a piece of furniture or re-arranging a gallery wall in my home! Constantly moving things around in my home also keeps me from spiralling into Pin-FOMO because what happens is, whenever I start feeling inspired on Pinterest, my bank account reminds me that I need to calm the heck down!… so my only recourse is to nail a few more holes into my wall… and yes, I have a deep understanding of the origin of ‘sticking out like a sore thumb’ because my hammer and my thumb are really well acquainted!

This ↓↓ ↓↓ was my entryway back in March.

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By the time June came around I had the ‘itch’ to refresh the gallery wall, so I white washed the picture frames ↓↓ ↓↓ .

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Step two is a mock layout of items you want to display

…unlike eyeliner, I can totally wing a gallery wall… whenever I’ve tried winging eyeliner my eyes wind up looking like strangers who met on tinder and are not making a match! I  actually winged all my previous gallery walls, this is the first time I took the time to lay out all the pieces prior to hanging them up, and admittedly, this is the best gallery wall I’ve hang up yet.

I started out by measuring the wall space I wanted to utilise for the gallery wall, I have a rug that has similar dimensions, so I rolled it out and used it as a guide for the space available as I played about with different layouts. The slideshow below shows a few of the layouts I was considering.

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Step three involves nails and hammers, you need a clear head for this so don’t undertake this step if you are:

a) Mad at someone … your fingers will suffer!

b) Watching million dollar Listings New York and this ↓↓ ↓↓ tall drink of water is on,  because… your fingers will suffer! Not even this heart throb is worth a throbbing thumb!


c) If you are hammered… it should go without saying.. hammers aren’t the best in tipsy hands.

d) If you are getting nailed…(sorry if I’ve offended any of your sensibilities its just that hammers and nails lend themselves so well to many a pun!)… also if you clobber the person nailing you, I don’t think the cops will chalk it up to a crime of passion!

For my galleries I like to have pieces that have a memory attached to them, so let em walk you down memory lane:

  • The beaded necklaces on the top left I got from Samburu women a couple of years back when we’d gone to Amboseli National Park to celebrate my daughters birthday.
  • Next to the necklaces is my graduation picture and on the bottom right is my moms.
  • The drawing of my daughter and I was taken a few days before her papa and I got hitched… first came love… (then came dating squabbles) then came baby (followed by baby papa and baby mama squabbles)… then came marriage (YES I wore white) then came marital squabbles (still waiting for those to end!) … and thats a snapshot of our love story!
  • The frame beneath the drawing that has bits of shells and driftwood we picked up in Mombasa years ago during the dating phase of our relationship, from a gift shop at Yulz (oh! their freshly made authentic Italian ice-cream!!! I still have dreams about it and its my yardstick for good ice-cream!!) and hauled it around for our entire trip, the map we picked up from the Karen Blixen Museum and its a map of Kenya showing the former administrative boundaries.
  • The drawings of Le Moulin Rouge, we bought from a street artist along Avenue des ChampsÉlysées for less than a euro each years ago on our trip to Paris.
  • On the top right is a picture of me that we took a day before my little zizmaroo was born.
  • The beads next to it we bought again from Samburu Women on another trip to Amboseli National Park, a couple of years after we got the first pair (one for me and another for my daughter.
  • The plaque with my daughters name on it I got made for her nursery before she was born, and for a couple of years it lived above her bed.
  • The two masks I got from Maasai Market years ago.
  • The picture of the three of us we took when Ziz was 6 months old and was our first and last family studio portrait… I find that I prefer unposed impromptu pictures… thank goodness for improved phone picture quality!

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