Gallery style art displays are one of the easiest ways to create a sense of drama in a space in need of a little attention. The hard — and expensive part — is finding the art to make up such an expansive display. Enter your expired calendars or clearance bin art books!
As much as I love the the dramatic effect of gallery style displays, I've always hesitated in creating one myself because I worry that my favorite cherished pieces of original art would get lost in the mix. However, using favorite images from calendars or art books — surely you've seen the stacks and stacks of oversize sale books at Borders and other major bookstores — solves that worry as well the budget dilemma. Another added bonus: using multiple works by the same artist or theme lessens the likelihood of having the display seem overly busy. The styles are most likely to build a sense of harmony and coherence, reading almost more like wallpaper than art.
• 1. Although I've seen the idea used time and time again, Lauren Liess of Pure Style Home totally sold me on it when she used a book of Leonardo da Vinci's sketches to create her striking entryway. She used identical frames for all the prints, although the actual size of the sketches varies. If you haven't checked out her hallway transformation, it's worth the look! Check out her blog, Pure Style Home for more details.
• 2-3. While I love Lauren's free form gallery style hanging, I also appreciate the clean lined drama of a grid display.
• 4. To cut down on costs, used mismatched frames from around your home or thrift store. My friend Kathleen used gold frames and a soon to be out of date calendar to create a little harmony without spending a cent. This is the perfect time of year to pick up beautiful calenders for pennies, as retailers look to unload them to make room for the latest addition, so keep your eyes peeled!