We always knew we will have a staircase gallery in our house. So as soon as we got a house we started to create one. Our staircase gallery used to be spontaneous. No rules applied. All needed was a good photo, a frame and a nail. The idea behind it was that it will naturally grow with the family. And so it did. Until there was no more room on the wall and we stopped noticing the pictures. Which is a pity as there were so many great pictures and so many great memories.
Recently I reorganized most of the gallery walls in the house adding a shape to the meaning and proving yet again that
less is more.
Some of the photos had to go. Some of the frames had to go and, I must say, it felt like saying goodbye to an old friend but the house got a space that tells a story. The story that you want to tell and you want to see. It was all about choices. Yet, while it was fairly easy to arrange wall galleries of up to ten pictures it felt like an uphill task to rearrange the staircase wall of sixty something. I knew there was only one way to do that. Take them all down.
It was messy. We ended up having piles of frames on the landing, while repainting the wall and researching ideas like this here and that there. Yet, after a few days of feeling completely framed, I knew what I wanted and how to do that.
Any wall gallery needs a shape. The more varied the frames and photos the more important it is to keep them in a simple shape. I chose a parallelogram starting at the bottom landing and finishing on the top step of the staircase.
I use thread to outline all of my wall gallery shapes. Simply use the measuring tape to get the proportions right, and sellotape your thread to create nice straight margins for your gallery. Now keep your frames in between the two lines but make sure one edge of the frame touches the thread.
Plan your frames in terms of size and style. I used batches of 4-6 to try them on the wall and see if and how they fit. When placing the frames on the wall always start with the outer ones and move in.
Most of the pictures in my gallery are the staples, family favourites, here-to-stay photos. To mix things up a bit I added a few seasonal ones. Spring landscapes full of fresh green can turn into sunny summer snapshots then autumn saturated images and finally Christmassy portraits with baubles of light in the background. It never fails to go with the seasons.
Step in – Step up – Step back
Have fun. Be creative and take a break to get a better perspective.