Woman in a Gallery

How to Elevate Your Wall Art

Getting that “expensive” gallery feel to your wall art doesn’t have to cost you as much as a gallery piece itself. “Elevating” your wall art can actually be a simple and inexpensive project. Let’s take a look at some great ways you can get gallery-style wall art without breaking the bank:

Finding Good Sources for Art

There are many places you can source good artwork from, and not all of them are “walk into HomeGoods and buy one”. Here are some good places you can get some unique art for your walls:

  • Purchase a print from a local artist. Visit local coffee shops or even the library to see if there’s anything you like!
  • Swatches and samples can make good wall art. Simply matting and framing wallpaper, textile samples, or even wrapping paper can make a unique piece of wall art.
  • Purchase a stock image on the cheap and get it printed. Sites like ShutterStock.com and iStock.com have millions of images of anything you could possibly imagine. Do a quick search to get some inspiration and, if you fall in love with an image, purchase it to print it out for home use!

Movie Posters, Game Posters & More

We all had posters of this sort when we were growing up, often taped up in our rooms. Instead of taping a few posters up on your walls, adding a simple frame can make a cheap movie poster look a lot more expensive. Couple this with a bunch of similarly sized movie posters in the same area, or going down a hallway, and you’ll be able to create a cinema/movie theater-type feel.

When picking out frames for movie posters and game posters, make sure to choose a frame that will fit your space. If you have an area that has a lot of traffic and is easily touched by children, you may want to opt for plastic frames over glass ones. For an authentic movie theater feel, go with thick, boxy frames that sit as flush with the wall as possible.

Some people even go a step further and backlight their posters, or even add lighting behind the frames.

Inexpensive Art to Expensive Gallery Art

Buying a print off of a local artist can be an amazing thing, and we applaud you for doing so! But what happens if you don’t have a frame for that print or you don’t know what to do with it? Instead of taping it up on a wall or just putting it away somewhere, try these framing methods that can help elevate it into gallery-like status.

Mat It Up

Matting is a tell-tale sign of a work that is hung in a gallery, and hence why matting can help elevate a piece of artwork so well. Matting, or double matting even, can give you some dead space inside of a frame that will help your eye focus on the work inside. Mats can come in a multitude of colors and sometimes even patterns. Generally gallery work will either have white mat (most common) or black mat. Black mat can look a bit amateur-ish, so try out different colors to see what looks best. Most arts and crafts stores carry standard mat sizes (i.e. 11×14 with a hole for 8×10 prints), but if you need a non-standard size or custom size, you can ask a framer to cut a mat for you, or order from a place like MatboardPlus.com

Find A Fitting Frame

Your frame can tell a lot about your work inside of it. Try to avoid picking out frames that can overpower your image. That means keep the “friends” and “family” text frames out of the picture. Usually sleek black or white frames will look best. A white frame with a white mat can really look spectacular on your wall, especially if you have a cluster of the same size frame!

Ensure Proper Hanging

Not all hanging methods are created equal. Remember that a nail in a piece of drywall can only hold so much weight. Make sure that your final work is not too heavy for where you’re planning to put it, and if it does come out a bit weighty, ensure that you have used applicable methods to make sure that your item doesn’t fall off the wall. Drywall anchors are a good alternative if a stud isn’t nearby. Gallery shelves are also a great idea if you plan on swapping the works out constantly.

How well has your gallery wall art project come along? Let us know in the comments below!

Posted in Ideas and Tips, Walls.

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