Here's the secret to a completely fail-proof art gallery wall. 

By Katie Holdefehr
September 06, 2019

In the 2019 Real Simple Home, the living room was a beautiful space that looked out on the back patio, but designer Anita Yokota had one major challenge to solve: a big, blank wall that was calling out for artwork. To fill such a large area, Yokota decided the only solution was to create a gallery wall. Using a mix of art and a variety of frames, the designer turned this blank canvas into the focal point of the room. Want to learn how to design your own gallery wall? Follow the pro-approved tips below, then watch the video to see the living room's dramatic before-and-after. 

Continue the Tour: Check Out the Jaw-Dropping Master Bedroom in the 2019 Real Simple Home

Step #1: Figure Out If You Have the Right Space for a Gallery Wall 

Not every wall is the right spot for a gallery wall, so before you begin, decide if your wall works for one. According to Yokota, a large wall, particularly in a room with high ceilings, is the ideal location to install an art gallery wall. 

Step #2: Stick With One Style Frame

If you're going for an eclectic look, choose frames in the same style but different colors. In the Real Simple Home's living room, all of the frames are sleek and modern, without fussy details or embellishments, but they range from white, to light wood, to black. 

Step #3: Pick a Variety of Art

Imagining that she was designing the room for a young family, Yokota wanted a playful mix of art in the space. Colorful geometrics, florals, and landscapes all live together on the same wall. A graphic piece serves as the star of the show, while landscapes that don't demand too much attention act as filler. 

Step #4: Choose a Foundation Piece 

When arranging the artwork, start with one big, eye-catching piece of art to start, then work the other pieces around it. 

Step #5: Size Up the Artwork 

To space out the artwork before you start nailing holes in the wall, Yokota recommends arranging the artwork on Google Slides. If installed above a sofa, the entire arrangement should be proportional to the sofa, and should start several inches above the back of the couch (so you don't end up hitting your head against the picture frames!).

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