Creating a family photo wall

by Katrina - The Organised Housewife

I have always wanted to create a photo wall in our home.  I much prefer to have photo’s on the wall rather than framed on a hutch or side table, purely for the fact that it make it so much easier to dust. It’s taken me a while to put up the photo wall because I procrastinated too much about it with the following options:

  • matching frames, all same colour and style
  • mismatched frames
  • different coloured frames
  • the sizes of the photo’s
  • the shape of the frames together

I was considering having all matching frames but I wondered how I would go in a few years time when I wanted to change it and if those frames were no longer available. So in the end I decided to create a photo wall using white mismatched frames.  I loved this idea because I was able to spray paint a frame that was given to my by my grandmother to include on the wall. There are some beautiful walls I have seen with frames randomly placed on the wall, but I wanted it to look neat and tidy and the end result all the frames to be within a rectangle.

Steps to creating a photo wall:

  1. I keep all my photo’s on my computer, have not had any printed for years.  I went through and found the pictures that I wanted and copied them into a folder named ‘photo wall’. Write a short description of each photo on a post it note per photo
  2. Determine which photo’s to be more prominent in the display.  This is a good starting point, first get the large prominent frames then purchase all other smaller frames to fit around
  3. Lay out the frames on the floor and play around until you are happy with the placement
  4. Place post it notes onto frames to determine which photo you want to display in which frame
  5. You will then know from which photo you have in which frame the size you need printed
  6. I sent all my images through to a local online photo printing shop, which then allow me to pick them up a few hours later.
  7. Place photos in frames
  8. Put 3M picture hanging strips on the back of each frame and leave overnight to ensure that they have secured well, remembering to put frame back in the correct position on the floor.  I prefer to use the strips instead of nails because I change my mind a lot so it’s easier to take the strips off the wall and move to a different place without damaging the walls
  9. Measure the length of the frames that are laid out to determine where to start hanging them on the wall
  10. Use a leveller to ensure that your frames are displayed straight
  11. You may need to remove the stand from the back of some picture frames so it sits flush against the wall.

lay out on floor to determine frame placement

It’s a good idea to have helpers, I was master delegator!!

We worked our way around the outside and then finished with adding frames into the middle

It ended up a little higher on the wall than I would of liked…. but in the end this was a good thing as the kids play behind the couch so the frames are high enough that they won’t brush against them.  It also allows room in the future for me to add another 2 or so rows to the bottom.

I love that I can see the picture wall when standing in the kitchen

Do you have a family photo wall?

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10 comments

willie hutto September 11, 2013 - 7:18 AM

I too have done a photo wall project. the first time was using 5×7 matching wood frames. 3 rows 5 pictures per row. the middle row frame was side to side. all others were up and down. hung above my couch too. then when we moved I did the heart picture set-up using the frames. of course being years later I couldn’t find the same matching frames, but made do. my heart was a little wide. took a whole wall. lol. but since we have down sized once again, I am only dreaming of a picture wall. just waiting for an idea to spark my interest. p.s. the heart set-up was one I found on pinterest. took FOREVER to measure and hang. I used 5×7 papers and blue tape and rulers before I actually put a nail in the wall.

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Julia K September 11, 2013 - 7:37 AM

That looks so lovely Katrina. Well done !
A photo wall is on my “one day” list too 🙂

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Katrina September 27, 2013 - 8:25 AM

I am loving looking at it every day

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toushka September 11, 2013 - 7:50 AM

I’ve had many photo walls. Now in a new home and still deciding where to create the next one. Which wall? What frames? Etc. I’m a big fan of 3m picture strips too!

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Katrina September 27, 2013 - 8:25 AM

LOL Toushka, I have been in this home for 8 years now and always wanted a photo wall, I just didn’t put one up because I procrastinated so long, don’t take as long as I did :

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Mandysgirls September 11, 2013 - 8:28 AM

I have just done one after deliberating for so long, at the moment all the frames are different colours and I was planning on spraying the frames, but I have to say, I quite like the differences. It’s a big wonky though as the frames move, but it’s in my hallway so it’s not as crucial.

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Edie May 30, 2014 - 11:03 AM

I love using the command/3 m stripes they only issue I had was if the paint does come off how do you fix that?

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Cherie Clark May 30, 2014 - 6:33 PM

This is perfect I have always wanted to have a photo wall but up my stair well but the project seemed a bit overwhelming and I was not sure where to start. I love it and I’m going to recycle our old frames.

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Faye Herman June 25, 2014 - 9:48 AM

How do I print this out to read step by step

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clare October 5, 2015 - 1:08 PM

I just finished my framily photo wall last week, after about 3 years of selecting, collecting and procrastinating. I love it, but will find it hard wslking past without fixing up frames, at least in my head!

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