Gallery Wall Refresh || A New Take On A Classic

July 3, 2019

This post is sponsored by Mpix. All opinions, content, and design are mine alone.  

Meet my new favorite design element in my home! It's a new take on my classic gallery wall, and I'm so excited to share it with you! To say I'm obsessed would not do my feelings justice. It really just makes me downright happy. 

So why the revamp? Well, if you're anything like me, then you love a little change every now and then. That and we're knocking down the wall the original gallery was hanging on (see it in my IG highlights!). Plus, I'm a chronic furniture-rearranger; I just truly love finding a new way to style a room or a shelf or even a wall. So while I was smitten with my first take on a gallery wall, I was itching to reinvent it, adding my evolved style to the mix. I could picture exactly what I wanted, and the challenge was finding a way to make it come to life. Did it ever, though! Now let's get to the details...

When dreaming up this new wall, I knew I wanted something different than the norm, something that still made a statement, but offered a new look. Something unexpected! Instead of a partial-wall gallery, I wanted floor to ceiling. I also needed to utilize what I had and stick to a budget. So I worked through several options, but couldn't settle on something that felt a) too similar to what I had done before  b) was way out of my budget.

That's when I jumped on Mpix's site to see what photo print sizes they offer. I knew they had some unique sizes, and I felt certain it would help me figure out the style I was trying to achieve. So after perusing through the options, I landed on an 8x8 photo size. It was still going to be a big enough photo that I could see it in-detail from across the room, while also giving me some design flexibility for how to frame it. 

Pro tips: 
  • If you're looking at designing a custom wall, I highly recommend you know what sizes are offered for prints. And I choose Mpix over and over again because their print quality is hands-down the best, the people are phenomenal, and the customer support is exceptional. I trust the product I'm going to get is always going to exceed my expectations, and it never disappoints. 
  • 8x8 is a great size for printing photos from your phone (while maintaining good print quality) too! Mpix gave me the confidence to print large photos taken from my iPhone. I had been nervous to ever consider that an option, but the phone photos printed wonderfully!

Next came figuring out the frames. Buy new ones or repurpose my originals? Ultimately, it came down to price. And I couldn't justify buying all new frames when I loved mine - the size, material, and frame width. That's when I decided matte black spray paint would be the best way to bring them up-to-date with my current style preferences. The black would create a beautiful contrast and clean line. So, Pete and I spray painted the metal frames, and you'd never know we didn't buy them as black frames. It looks amazing

Now that I knew the frame size + the photo size, it was time to figure out the picture mat. I'm a BIG believer in using mats for framing photos, especially in a gallery wall. It creates space, cleanliness, and symmetry. I think it also looks very crisp and sharp. I didn't want a standard mat. I wanted something that would add a completely different feel to the gallery wall. I loved the idea of an off-centered, over-sized mat to frame out my 8x8 photo. So I made custom mats (all sizing details below) that matched the vision in my head. 

And this gallery wall has come to life just like I imagined. I can't get over how well it all turned out! It's this lovely statement piece in my home that holds some of my most treasured photographs. I love that it fits so seamlessly into our family room, and that I can now see it from my kitchen too. It makes me all kinds of happy!

H O W    T O    C R E A T E    T H I S    I N    Y O U R    H O M E :

    • 8 x 8 from Mpix
    • Use my code for 30% off the entire Mpix site (expires July 5): darlingdo
  • MATS
    • Outer Size: 16 x 20
    • Opening Size: 7.75 x 7.75 
    • Top Margin: 4 1/8"
    • Side Margins: 4 1/8"
    • Bottom Margin (top center): 8 1/8"
    • Color: Very White

H A N G I N G    T H E    G A L L E R Y :

With a large gallery wall, I recommend smaller spacing in between frames (this is the reason I love using mats inside the frames - to create visual space between the photos). Start by measuring the height and width of your frames in a grid. Then add in the spacing. This gives you the overall size of your gallery. 

Next, measure the wall you plan to hang the gallery. Using those measurements, center the gallery accordingly. I'll share the exact spacing used for hanging the gallery on my wall. Remember, this will be different on your wall, depending on the size of your wall!

    • Overall gallery height (with added spacing): 85.5"
    • Overall gallery width (with added spacing): 69.5"
    • In between frames: 1.5" 
    • From the left and right: 
      • Side of frame from wall: 22.5"
      • Nail hole from wall: 30.5" 
    • From the ceiling: 2"
    • From the radiator: 2"

**My actual frame measures 16.25" x 20.25". This is important when measuring out your gallery wall; be sure to actually measure your frame.

**Nail holes are measured by adding the frame size (either height or width) and the in-between spacing. 

View more of my gallery walls for gathering inspiration! 

Thank you so much to Mpix for partnering with me. 
And thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible!

**Affiliate links are used in this post. Thank you, as always, for supporting Darling Do!