5 Easy Tips for Choosing and Displaying Art and Objects for a Gallery Wall Layout Anyone Can Do!

Updated: Feb 23, 2020

Do you look at your art choices and feel confused or overwhelmed? Especially when mixing two-dimensional and three-dimensional pieces on the same wall?


Your solution is a simple sorting process.

Pick your favorite: theme, color, style, or media, and then get ready to swing your hammer and hang your decor with confidence.


5 Ways to Create a Successful Gallery Wall



It took some effort to create these five visual examples listed below. I had to pull props and art from every corner of Allison's home, my step-daughter of 26 years. Having been in the art and home decor business with me for twenty years, Allison was used to my antics. But as I shuffled and shook-up every vignette, I got worrisome eye rolls from her. Then one extra-large glass of wine wisp away any of Allison's concerns!


5 Ways to Mix Art and Wall Objects

The simple sorting process. Pick your favorite:

#1 Color

This is probably the easiest method for creating cohesion in your wall grouping.


By picking a dominant color you can mix different styles, subjects, media, even time periods from antique to modern. Your only focus is on the dominant color, including multiple shades and tints of that color. As long as you stay in the one-color family, your wall display will be a hit!


The color pink anchors this wall grouping mix of watercolor, kid's art, wood signs, and needlepoint.

BONUS TIP: Frames can act as a uniform color such as the black frames shown in photo below.


Black frames act as the one color to unify these colorful and black-white drawings and photographs.

#2 Subject

Picking one theme will harmonize your gallery wall.

A common subject is a perfect method if you have a passion for a theme:

- dogs

- portraits

- travel

- the list is endless, your preferences will guide you, turning your house into a real home reflecting your personality.


Love of travel coordinates this collection of license plates and map.

#3 Style

This refers to the distinctive characteristics of the pieces, be it Victorian, Regal, Impressionistic, contemporary, even masculine.


Style can be a particular mood, such as the "casual" feel in the photo below.


Strong graphic images coordinate this casual look.

BONUS TIP for Three Dimensional:

  1. Place the 3-D object off-center so the object doesn't feel like the rest of the wall is arranged around that one item.

  2. Keep the size of the 3-D item the same as the 2-D item next to it. This will help the 3-D item blend in.


#4 Media

How the piece was created defines this category. You can sort by the media, such as placing watercolor with watercolor, or needlepoint with needlepoint, or pastels with pastels, or etchings with etchings ...


Using the common media of black and white photographs creates harmony even though the photos are unframed and framed differently

#5 Scale - Detail - Pattern

Consistency is coordinated by the common element in the size/scale of the brush stroke in the image below. Although each pattern is different, the gallery wall still works together.


The similarity in the width of the brush strokes in each of these objects unites the wall grouping.

BONUS TIPS: for Fine Details

  1. The fine details of etchings, architectural renderings, and drawings can create an interesting gallery wall composition. Grouping the fine detail art together tones down the busyness of the subject matter and creates a more simplified visual. From a distance your grouping will read as one large unit.

  2. In displaying such delicate technical work the viewer needs to be able to get up close to the art for close inspection, appreciation, and admiration.


Quirky detailed drawing by my twelve-year-old granddaughter, Lilly, is best appreciated up close.

Creating a gallery wall will give your home the personal touch you'll love.

Simply sort your favorite items and then swing that hammer!

Need help beyond Selecting Items for a Successful Gallery Wall?

Click related articles below:


How to lay-out the design of a gallery wall, click here.


How to choose size and shapes needed, click here.