PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACES

So, I feel like I’ve been struggling with a few spaces in our house lately. Maybe it’s a designer’s version of writer’s block or maybe I just have too many crazy thoughts going on in my head with far too little organization (let’s be honest…it’s probably the latter) but I’ve been staring at one particular spot in our house for days weeks MONTHS and coming up short in the creativity department. It’s a space I really liked at one point but as my style changed a bit and I tweaked it here and there, it finally got to the point where I didn’t really know what else to do. I wasn’t loving it at all but wasn’t hating it enough to do a complete overhaul, so it basically just existed, sitting there untouched, un-styled, completely under-designed and just begging for the design gods to send its owner some ideas.

Well, I’m not sure I’ve been touched by an angel quite yet, but the ideas are starting to filter in. The “TV wall” in our living room has gone through a few changes over the months.

Several months ago it looked like this. I really liked the striped accent wall, I was digging the symmetry with the windows on either side and I was pretty happy with it, but suddenly the sight of the fake tree and pleather ottoman/bench starting to make me twitch…

PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACESSo those two were out and I decided to pair the windows together to the right of the striped wall to create a cozier little reading nook and fill out the wall a bit more.

PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACES I liked this a lot but then I was left with an empty space to the left of the striped wall. I thought this would be the perfect spot for our radiator cover turned console table that I had hiding out in the basement waiting for her moment to shine.

PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACESShe felt right at home here and I loved how it had the feeling of an old built-in but then I was left with the task of styling it, which proved to be slightly difficult…

PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACES

I wasn’t really happy with anything I came up with and, to be honest, I didn’t really try that hard. Something just wasn’t clicking and I couldn’t force it. Along the way, I lost that sense of symmetry that I liked in the beginning and even though I didn’t want to go back to how it looked before, I was yearning for that symmetrical feeling again.

That’s when I realized, I needed something to tie the 3 different spaces together. In it’s current state there were three separate areas competing for attention: the console table wall to the left of the TV, the striped accent wall, and the windowed wall to the right. Nothing was bringing it all together and, instead, my eyes were darting about, trying to figure out where to look.

Let’s add that of our list to design rules: Darting Eyes = Bad!

So I think the solution to my problem might be to create a gallery fall that overflows from one space to another, to truly connect all three spaces. I’ll do away with the striped wall (it was fun while it lasted but it’s just not working anymore) and add a collection of old frames and prints of all different shapes and sizes to bring it all together.

Here’s a hastily put together probably quite embarrassing, why am I actually publishing this for the world to see again? Photoshop drawn version of where I’m going with this…

PLANNING A MASSIVE GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACESThat’s clearly night a high quality rendering of what I’m thinking of but I think you get the picture. Fill those blank black & gray rectangles with beautiful prints, cool old frames, and a whole lot more character and I think it will be a great way to tie it all together camouflaging the TV a bit. Then, the 3 spaces will work as one rather than competing for your attention and doing away with that pesky darting eye.

Here are a few examples of where I think this idea really works…

TV wall gallery wall

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PLANNING A GALLERY WALL & DEALING WITH COMPETING SPACES

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As I continue to add to my frame and art collections, I’ll be sure to use my tape and paper gallery wall planning trick to avoid putting 15,000 holes in my walls before I know what I’m doing and to get a good idea of what layouts will work and which ones won’t. So for now, if you need me, you can probably finding trolling Etsy art shops and digging through thrift shop frame aisles…

Do you have any spaces that are competing for your eye’s attention? How do deal with tying areas together?

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