gallery wall update

gallery wall update

i was feeling the need for change this weekend and my sight fell on my dining room.  after a failed attempt to add more color to this area over the table, i ended up focusing my attention on our “gallery wall” or photo shelves or whatever you want to call them!

gallery wall update

 so many areas in my house i decorated when we first moved in 6 years ago, and have never really changed.  i was/am happy with them so i never really felt a need for change.  this is what my photo shelves have basically looked like for the past 6 years, but with pictures swapped out every few years, and bottles moving around.

gallery wall update

i have slowly been adding shots of color to my living room.  i’ve noticed lately (since the living room, dining room, and kitchen are all in one big room) that this side of the room looks like a color tv…

gallery wall update

and this side of the room looks like its in black and white!  borrrrring!

gallery wall update

 as much as i liked the shelves the way they were, i decided to completely take down everything and start from scratch.  i took out some of the frames and added in new pictures and shots of color, which it was totally lacking before.

gallery wall update

i love this little sign joy gave me, and i think its perfect next to a couple pictures of sean and i ;)

gallery wall update

 i spotted this #5 a few weeks ago on etsy and had to snag it!  i set it on top of a pile of pretty yellow books, and added a tiny globe.  also adding in some color are some prints of our most recent family photo shoot.

gallery wall update

 i put one of my favorite globes on the top shelf and i wanted to balance the yellow books below, so i added this little thrifted owl i had tucked away.

gallery wall update

 and to balance the red 5 i added a vintage metal tray.

gallery wall update

 i’m still playing with it a bit, moving things a touch here and there.  but overall, i love it!  the room feels so different with the shots of color.

and… sean said he may be willing to let me paint our dining chairs fun colors!


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  1. 1

    Hi, been following your work for a while now, you’re very inspirational, but I was moved to comment for the first time because I can’t bear the idea of you painting those beautiful chairs! Please just find a way to add pops of colour some other way… even though you’re finding the colour scheme a bit monochrome it actually looks sophisticated and seriously chic with the dark wood and white paint trim. Restraint is a good thing sometimes!

  2. 2

    Hmmmm I wasn’t going to say anything about the chairs because I told myself that you’re just bolder than me. But then Beth also thought to err on the side of restraint… Are they proper nice wood? I wonder if some lovely textiles would work as a more flexible change? And maybe a bright rug on the floor or something? I just noticed those lovely legs on that dining table :)
    I’ve always loved your living area too, not seen that angle of it yet – looks so sunny and bright! May I ask what blinds you use? Can you see through them? I’m on the hunt for blinds that can obscure the view from outside, but that you can see through from the inside when it’s still light :)

  3. 3

    I love the wall! As for the chairs. I am working on some right now – what a bear – grrrr. But they are worth it. I bought my chairs decades ago on Craigslist and honestly only did one (the extra one) at first. I used Halycon Green a little distressing and glazing but it has taken me 3 months to finish (for the record I have 4 kids and 1 exhange student living with us). Anyway – go for it but know that it is W.O.R.K! But work never hurt anyone – has it?

  4. 4

    Amazing how little tweaks can transform the whole atmosphere. I’m inspired to shake things up a bit here!

  5. 5

    Long time reader! I love the new look. I’m about to tackle my chairs as well! It’s amazing how just paint can transform the look of a space. Happy Painting!

  6. 6

    Mixing things up once in a while is a good thing…and you’ve proven that. A few tweaks and you breathed new life into an already lovely display. Your house (or what I can see here) is absolutely beautiful!

  7. 7

    I am doing the same thing in our home…adding some color. I am so inspired by Meg @ whatever. I love your shelves. I want to paint my chairs too but that is a HUGE commitment! It takes me awhile to build up the courage!

  8. 8

    Really love the “After” of your shelves, the red pop of color and the fun globes and owl really add some interesting change ups to the photos. Good job.

  9. 9

    oooohhhh….what color are you thinking for the chairs???

  10. 10

    I love your shelves, great idea. :) Can you tell me where they are from…..pottery barn?
    Thank you :)

  11. 11

    wow, I love your living and dining room. amazing!!!

  12. 12

    I love your decorating style. And what a difference just a few pops of color can make! I’d be sitting there staring at the prettiness of those shelves if I were you. I’m a beautifully decorated shelf fanatic. :) Lol.

  13. 13

    Your gallery wall update looks great!


  14. 14

    I would add a brightly colored table cloth or table runner along with happy colored seat cushions to make pops of colors shine. Or classic handkerchiefs sewn together over the windows.

    You could also add placemats, too

    Or droop some small pennants along the bottom of the shelves and over the windows! Bam..much easier than painting chairs.

  15. 15

    What about just some fun colorful cushions on the chairs to add some color? BTW, love the shelves!

  16. 16

    I love this! I have done a couple of similar displays and am looking to do another soon so this really inspired me. Thanks for sharing! :):)

    PS. I love painted chairs but this is such a nice set… Have you considered padding the chairs with a fun fabric? And a table runner to coordinate with a statement piece on it…

  17. 17

    I’d say leave the chairs alone. Add color by putting pads on them or one of those “sleeves” over the back of the chair. I’ve heard they are a lot of work to redo and you’d hate to wish they were back to black after you were done. If you had some spare chairs somewhere, then I’d say go for it.
    I love the updated shelf though! Totally spices up the room.

  18. 18

    Don’t paint the chairs! They are beautiful! What if you upholstered the seats with some fun fabric? Then it’s something you can always change out or even return the chairs back to their normal state if you want a change again at a later date.

  19. 19

    Love the gallery wall, especially the pop of red (my favorite color). As far as the chairs, while I think they are beautiful I can also envision them in fun colors. I think you should what makes you happy and the look that you are envisioning for your room. I learned this from my wonderful husband who helped me to figure out my style…not everyone else’s, but my own style which I love. If we were all the same, life would be boring and we would never get ideas from others. Do what makes you happy!!! I’m sure it will be beautiful because it is your style!!

  20. 20

    I like the pops of red!

  21. 21

    I love your gallery wall. The original version was great, but I definitely agree with bringing in color! Maybe this is the inspiration I need to give one of my own a shot!

  22. 22

    Your gallery wall looks fantastic! I’d love to do something similar in my home.

  23. 23

    If it’s a vote, I vote paint. BTW…my husband and my song is that very song you have next to your wedding pic. We are celebrating our anniversary this week too :) Love what you’ve done.

  24. 24

    your home is so cute! it wasn’t bad before but i agree that adding pops of color on the shelf made things more cohesive. I just wish I had that many photos up around my place. what joy they must bring! we just got a new printer. i think i’ll print some more photos today and get started. thanks for sharing!

  25. 25

    Paint those chairs, sister. ;-)

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