Tuesday, May 24, 2011

How to Hang It Up: Creative Wall Displays

Framed images over wallpaper. A daring and artistic approach.  From amberinteriordesign.blogspot.com
I am a big believer in the idea that if you want to enjoy your personal collection of hang-able photos, artwork, sculpture or other objects, you should feel free to place them, hang them, dangle them any way you wish. There are so many endless and creative ways to display those things that you love.

Some designers may disagree with this free-for-all way of thinking, but I recently found numerous images from a variety of people's homes that show anything but conventional ways to display framed artwork and objects. I believe these walls, arranged with careful abandon, are much more interesting and alive than the standard ways you see art displayed in some catalogs or stores.

There is definitely room for carefully organized wall displays, and I have included some examples here, but organized madness can be fun to look at and experience as well. That craziness can sometimes be very engaging to the eye.  Each home showcases personal statements about those who live there, and that's kind of the purpose of displaying things you love don't you think?

So, here are some fabulously quirky, and/or inventive ways people have chosen to hang their personal mementos, artwork and such. Each one is very particular and unique to each home and environment.  I hope you find inspiration here!

Which of these unusual wall displays sparks that creative drive in you?

Creating a personal statement:  Here is a cute, young couple and the wall behind them also conveys their sweet personality and joy.  Lots of love and individuality here.  Clocks, mirrors, and even collages of the couple, all make for a cohesive statement.  They enjoy that wall behind them. Image: sarahrhodes.com

An inspiring art niche from designer Matthew MacCaul Turner of MacCaul Turner Design, from the San Francisco Decorator Showcase 2008-Art Niche. I think this could be translated well to any home with an unused closet or small space. Very inventive way to display artwork and objects.  Sculpture, objects, lithographs are hung upon ornate fabric draping in a unique manner. Love this!
Unexpected! These frames were stenciled onto the wall and the prints were applied using a decoupage method.  Plus, you can also just stencil the frames without photos to create a geometric wall pattern.  From stencil-library.com.

An adorable attic room with black framed pieces covering every inch of wall space. The unifying elements are black and white frames, a black wooden bed, white walls and bedding. Charmant!  From rufflesandstuff.com
Using a dark wall color really gives a distinctive, masculine look to the arrangement. Also the use of furniture and objects to ground the space. From catalogliving.net (A nice catalog example! Bravo!)
Designer Mary McDonald's office: Ahhh, now this is just so pretty.  A delightful punch of turquoise wall color with white and black elements. I could work here every day without a problem. From google.com
I love the idea of using fish prints over a tub! Again, black frames are used--a very classic and popular way to unify a look. It does not seem to get old.  From aubreyroad.blogspot.com
A cozy, vintage-inspired reading nook, punctuated with a cute dog too.  An eclectic, warm and inviting use of special items, heirlooms, artful constructions that surround the chair and lamp. From theSelby.com

Love how they used framed stained glass as an artful wall. The handmade bench underneath is a nice touch that grounds the display.  Great way to show off an endearing collection. From Leah Dent via Pinterest.com

Perfect use of a tight stairwell to highlight family images and  photos. All frames are different colors and materials. This  really gives a sweet human element, a sense of family and personality.  I kind of feel I know this family just from their wall of love.  From cocokelley.blogspot.com
Surely an artist lives here? Such an eclectic mix of personal artwork of all shapes and sizes, well displayed next to each other. Love the disheveled leather sofa too, a touch of urbanity. From Nat Cat via Pinterest.com.
This is what I call "perfectly measured framing." You need a ruler for this effect, but hey, it really looks great, no? I believe the home owners attached a fabric covered board to the wall first and then hung their collection on top of it. This saves the wall, instead of pounding nails into it. Also a great way to be able to change-out photos if you so desire. From Leah Dent via Pinterest.com
Along with the adorable butterfly mirror to the left, these numerous items are arranged in such a creative way and it works. So many elements here. Very artful approach to the hanging artwork, and also in using the un-used fireplace as another object to enjoy as well.  From adore-vintage-home.tumblr.com
I chose this as my last image because it is so gosh-darn dramatic! A winding stairwell  with a dizzying, art-filled display of photos, posters and artwork. Image from dwellerswithoutdecorators.blogspot.com


  1. Joanie, these are great. I esp. like the reading nook with the dog, where all kinds of items are hung on the wall - I have seen Tracy Porter refer to this as a "London wall". Looks great in a reading corner like this. I also like the fabric-backed niche - nicely done. Thanks for the post.

  2. Thanks so much! The dog kind of makes it so special, no? And the art niche by Matthew MacCaul Turner of MacCaul Turner Design is really special too. Love the inventive use of objects and framed artwork. Appreciate your comments!

  3. I have seen some news about technology development up till now. It is amazing when you think about how painting has developed into something made from the growing technology, from only brushes and paint rollers, to airless sprays or paint sprayers. It makes painting easier and fun! Anyway, thank you for sharing this article! It really inspired me to decorate better. Would like to see more updates from you.