Guest Write

Monday, January 2, 2012

How to Hang a Photo Collage

...without destroying your walls


I’ve had this blank space on the wall in my dining room for a couple of years now. I have been on the search for the perfect piece of art to hang but I still haven’t found it. I tried putting up a couple different large framed photos but nothing was quite right. I got so sick of the blank wall I decided that it was time to do something about it. I figured a framed collage would be a good option for the time being until I stumble upon that perfect piece of art that will not only look perfect but I can also afford.




If you were to take pretty much any of the framed art or photos off the walls in my home and look behind you would notice several holes in the wall that were being covered by the picture. I usually grab whatever nail or screw I can find even if it is way too big and just kind of eyeball the placement on the wall. It usually takes several times to get it right. hence the hidden wall damage behind most of my frames.

I saw a tip on Martha Stewart several years ago for hanging photos by creating templates with paper first to practice with. I combined that method with a few tips I learned from my mom and online to get the frames hung properly with minimal damage. This is also great for those of you who live in apartments because the wall holes will be really tiny and hardly noticeable when you take the frames down.


Supplies:
Assortment of frames ( I bought mine as a set from Target)
Ruler
Level
Scrap paper
Small pins (the kind you use for sewing)
Hammer

First trace your frames on the scrap paper and cut them out. Most frames have  little hooks on the back to hang them with. The hooks are about an inch from the top of the frame.  I calculated  exactly where the hook was and drew it on the paper templates with an X. I also wrote the sizes of the frames on the paper as some of sizes were hard to tell apart.


Next, figure out the placement of the frames by arranging the paper cut outs  on the floor or a table. This is much easier to do with the paper than with the frames as you don’t have to be as careful with the paper and risk dropping them and the glass breaking. Not that I have ever done that...

Once you decide on your pattern tape it to the wall.

* Tip *

When I was in school for make up artistry we learned that the human eye will trick us and the brain will often automatically correct imperfections so we don't see things for how they really are. For a truly objective view of things you should take a photo. When looking at a photo any mistakes or flaws will jump right out at you, where as when you were looking at it with the naked eye your brain corrected right away and you didn’t notice.
I’ve used this trick for many different things such as artwork, gardening, and now in home design projects. After I looked at the photos I decided the whole collage needed to be moved down several inches.


I left the paper on the wall overnight so I could get a fresh perspective in the morning. When I was satisfied with things I tapped the little pins right into the X marks on the paper and ripped the paper off the wall. Then you can hang the frames right up on the pins.  The pins are strong enough to hold the frames and the holes are so tiny you barely notice them when you take them out.


Use your level and ruler and make sure that everything is more or less even and level and you're done!






All the pictures in the frames were pictures I already had around and therefore were free and repurposed.

Some ideas for free art:
Pretty greeting cards
Old book covers
Photos from old calendars
Pictures from inside your favorite books (like my Alice in Wonderland pics)
If you don’t want to ruin your books you can scan the images and print of copies.
I also used a leaf from a house plant in my bathroom and stuck it in a frame.

Get creative and have fun!

3 comments:

  1. Excellent idea. I like the tip about taking a photo for true perspective. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. So, so, so valuable! Thank you for the time to teach us something really useful.

    ReplyDelete