How to Create a Gallery Wall [The EASY Way] 2018

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4 minute read or watch the video!

Do you have a large empty wall in your home that is dying to be decorated?  Do you also have a collection of art or photos that you'd like to display somewhere, but you're not sure what to do with them?  If so, you may want to consider creating a gallery wall.  Gallery walls are awesome for showcasing family or travel pics, inspirational quotes and art, etc.  However, they can be a little intimidating if you’ve never put one together. That’s where I come in! :)  Check out this video to learn How to Create a Gallery Wall….the EASY way.

After this video, you’ll be hanging art and photos like a pro in no time!  If video isn't convenient right now, get my  FREE Gallery Wall Guide & Gallery Wall Templates here or read through the 6 simple steps below the video.

How to Create a Gallery Wall Video

  How to Create a Gallery Wall - The EASY Way!


Before diving in, I suggest you get all the supplies you need for your gallery wall ready so you’re not running around the house looking for things - this will make the project go more smoothly.

  • Kraft paper or wrapping paper (the back of it – the ones with grid marks are perfect if you have them)
  • Painters tape or any other wall safe tape
  • Hammer and nails
  • Screw, screwdriver and drywall plugs (these are better a better option if you are hanging heavy items)
  • Measuring tape

Gallery Wall Supplies


  • Get your art and photo frames ready (preferably with all the photos and artwork already inserted inside) so that when you’re laying things out you’ll have a better visual sense of how things are going to look once they’re up on the wall.

  • Once you have everything ready and you’ve rolled out the Kraft paper or wrapping paper, tape down the edges so that the paper doesn’t try to roll away on you. 


Next, grab your art, photo frames and whatever else it is that you’re going to be hanging up and start placing them out on the paper until you've created a pleasing arrangement. You can create a gallery wall arrangement using items that are all the same size, colour and shape or with art, frames, etc. of different shapes and sizes – the choice is yours.  Try a few arrangements to see which one you like the best. Take a photo of each arrangement so that you can view them on your phone/computer from a different perspective before you commit to the final design.

Pro Tip #1If you're using frames and art of different sizes, shapes and colours, then make sure you make a conscious effort to achieve balance.  For example, don’t group all the same coloured or sized items together.  Instead, spread them out so that the design doesn’t look lopsided or heavy in one area and skimpy in another. 

Create Your Gallery Wall 2018
Pro Tip #2 When using various sized frames or objects, start with your largest item first and build the design around it. I find that’s the easiest because it helps to create a focal point for the arrangement.

Pro Tip #3 Make sure to place your gallery wall items so that they are no closer than 1” between each other and no greater than 6” away from each other.  If you place them too close the design will look cramped.  If you place them too far, the design will feel disconnected.  2” to 3” between each piece is optimal.

Gallery Wall Spacing 2018


Once you've decided on your favourite gallery wall arrangement, trace all the art, photo frames and other items (if applicable) out onto the Kraft/wrapping paper. Then, tape the arrangement up onto the wall where you plan to put it. If you like the arrangement you’re all ready to proceed to the next step.  If you don’t like the arrangement, then cut each traced element out and move the pieces around on the wall until you have a design that you are happy with.

Gallery Wall Mockup


Gallery Wall Template Example


Pro Tip #1 When deciding how high to hang your arrangement vertically, keep the general rule of 57” on center in mind.  What does that mean? Basically, it means you want to hang your art, photo frames or gallery grouping so that the vertical center is 57” off the ground. 57” is the average eye level for most people and therefore is an ideal reference point for hanging art and photos. This standard applies to almost every size of art so you can rely on it pretty well. That said, if your family and the people that you spend the most time with are quite a bit taller than the average person, you have a little bit of leeway.  You can hang things a few inches higher if you desire, but as a general rule of thumb 57” on center is a great place to start.

Here’s an example to help explain what I mean:

  • Measure the height of your art, or in this case gallery grouping, from top to bottom. In this example, the grouping is 27” high. 

  • Next, divide the height of your art or your gallery grouping by two. 27” divided by 2 is 13½”.

  • Now add 13½” to 57” to determine where the VERTICAL center of the art or gallery grouping should hang. 13½” + 57” is 70½” . Therefore, we know that the art or gallery grouping is going to be hung so that the vertical center lies at 70½” off the floor. 


While you’ve got your Kraft paper/wrapping paper up on the wall, measure the placement of the hanging hardware on the back of each of the art pieces, photo frames, etc.  Mark the placement on the Kraft/wrapping paper and poke the nail or screw right through the paper so that when you tear the paper away, you know exactly where to place your nails or screws.  For example, in the arrangement we’ve been discussing, we know that the top of the grouping will be hung at 70½” off the floor.  If the hanging hardware on the back of the top photo frame is taut at 2” down from the top of the frame, we know that we can place our nail at 68½” off the floor (70½” – 2” = 68 ½”).  Continue this process for each piece in your gallery wall.


  • The last step is to implement all the details and create your gallery wall.  An extra set of eyes and hands are helpful at this time, but you can certainly accomplish the task on your own if you have the patience.

  • Remove the Kraft/wrapping paper from your wall and install your nails or screws into where you the poked the holes from the previous step.

  • Hang your art, photos frames and other items onto the nails/screws, step back and enjoy what you've created. :)

Gallery Wall Complete
I wish you all the luck in creating a beautiful gallery wall that you are proud of. If you need some ideas for arrangements, click the button below to get access to my six free templates.

Free Gallery Wall Templates

Free Gallery Wall Templates

If you're not ready to tackle a gallery wall on your own, try one of these fail-proof gallery wall sets below.  I have provided sample templates for them as well. You can access them in the FREE Guide.

Note, I may make a small commission (at no additional cost to you) if you end up purchasing one of these gallery wall sets. 

12-Piece Matted Picture Frame Set

7-Piece Gallery Wall Set

10-Piece Portrait Set

I hope you find these tips helpful.  Please let me know which tip you found the most helpful by leaving a comment in the section below.  

If you'd like more interior design tips or you'd like to get immediate access to our FREE interior design guides, checklists and cheat sheets, Join our Design Tribe

Join Our Design Tribe

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If you have any other interior design challenges that you just can't seem to figure out, check out my super affordable Design Advice service. You get to ask me as many interior design and decorating questions as you like for a week at a time, allowing you the time you need to carry out your design tasks instead of soaking up all of your time researching them.  

I hope to hear from you one day soon.  Thanks for taking the time watch my video/read this post. I wish you the best of luck in reaching your interior design goals.  Take care for now. :)

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Val Malnar
Val Malnar
Principal Designer | Orangetree Interiors


decorating ideas do-it-yourself interior decorating do-it-yourself interior design gallery wall interior decorating interior decorating ideas interior design interior design tips

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