Monday 11 March 2019

DIY Tutorial: Gallery Wall (with free printable template!)

DIY gallery wall layout ideas

Although we live in a modern home, we've been blessed with high ceilings - great for creating a feeling of space, but it means we have a lot of big, blank walls. The stairs and landing are the worst culprit for this - its a massive white space that's crying out for something interesting. So I decided to try my hand at what I think is one of the hardest things to master - the gallery wall.

Three years ago I added a mini gallery to this wall (you can see more pictures and download a  template to create your own here), and whilst I loved it at the time, recently I've felt it was perhaps looking a bit cluttered so decided to start again from scratch, replacing it with something a bit more structured and clean looking.

DIY Gallery wall tutorial
A very different looking wedding-themed gallery wall which occupied the stairs previously

I've put together a video tutorial for this which you can watch here, or keep scrolling for the step-by-step instructions...

We've already got typography prints on our staircase, so I decided to extend this onto the facing wall using similar frames and black and white photos to create a more coherent look. To save some pennies I bought nine A3 (33x43cm / 16x12") frames from The Range, and made my own mounts using white card, which altogether cost me over half of the price of the IKEA frames I'd been looking at. So although cutting out the mounts was a little bit of a headache, its definitely worth it if you're on a tight budget.

To create the large white mount, I bought a pack of white A3 card, also from The Range, and cut a hole in the middle - the sides of the mount measured 7.5cm wide and 9cm high. Make sure you buy more card than you need - it took me no less than four attempts to get the size and cut right to start with! When you place the photo behind the mount it might be worth popping a little bit of tape on the corners to hold it in place.

I picked nine of the best quality photos I had - important if you want to blow them up to a large size - and printed them in 6x9" in a matt finish, which I felt looked better in the frames compared to the usual gloss finish I go for.

How to layout photos in a gallery wall

Stick the photograph to the back of the frame using tape

Print your own gallery wall template - All the measurements you'll need to recreate this look: 
Printable gallery wall template with layout idea

Getting them on the wall
This will depend on the size you've got to fill - my wall space measured 111cm wide by 146cm tall, and I wanted 10cm gaps between each frame. After you've worked out how you want to place your frames measure the centre point of your wall, which will be the centre point of your middle frame, working outwards from there. Make sure to pause every so often to step back and check everything is lining up OK, and use a spirit level too. 

We used simple picture hooks to hang the frames, good because they make minimal damage to the wall, and can be easily filled with decorators caulk if needed. However, things like command strips are perfect if you're renting, or don't want to make a mark on the wall. 

The finished look
I'm so pleased with how this has turned out, a much less cluttered and more classic look! Plus it'll be really easy to update the photos should I want to as time goes by. You could even change all the photos to colour, or mix and match to give it a completely different feel.

Nine frame gallery wall on stairs and landing

DIY gallery wall tutorial

DIY gallery wall tutorial

Gallery wall tips
  • Use the same colour frames/photos to create a uniform, simple look
  • Pick photographs that all connect to each other, or have a similar theme/colour. I chose photographs of our daughter and dog, and tried to choose the most high-quality images I have 
  • When measuring out on the wall double and triple check your measurements and always use a spirit level - I know its tempting just to measure and get the frames up, but when you're putting together something with such a structured look even the slightest mistake can be really obvious 
DIY gallery wall tutorial

Does a gallery wall have a place in your home? Do you prefer the uniform look, or more of a mismatched style? 

Thanks for reading,
Sam Xx


  1. We're just about to do something similar in our newly decorated bedroom! I love black and white photos and the uniform look of the frames!

    1. Ahh thats exciting! Thank you so much, hope it goes well!

  2. Thank you for sharing this. Love how you've showed us how to make our own mounts, I will definitely give this a go.. Brilliant :))


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