The Simple Accessory That Makes Creating Gallery Walls Way Easier

published May 17, 2020
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Credit: Apartment Therapy

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Nothing brings a room together quite like an eclectic gallery wall. Creating them—from choosing the best paintings and photographs to making them appear effortlessly arranged—calls for a careful balance of art and science.

But there’s one simple accessory that makes the often Herculean task way easier (and it’s not painter’s tape). Designer Jessica Brigham, who dreamed up the “Maximalist Boho” room for the Small Cool Experience 2020, flaunted hers in a Style School video on Apartment Therapy’s IGTV. The no-brainer apparatus? It’s a tool belt.

In her how-to video, Brigham suggests mapping out your wall on the floor in advance by using a measuring tape and painter’s tape, rearranging as necessary until you find the ideal layout. She explains this kind of pre-planning can limit unwanted holes in the wall.

“Although, I don’t shy away from this personally,” she admits of creating nail holes, which she notes can be quickly and easy filled with spackling compound and painted over.

Before you transfer your perfected arrangement to the wall, however, Brigham recommends clipping on a tool belt to keep your hammer, nails, level, measuring tape, chalk, and other little necessities at the ready. Tool belts are especially useful for those times when you don’t have another helper in the house to feed you nails. As Brigham says: “Give yourself a helping hand by wearing a tool belt for all your thangs.”

To achieve that vintage eclectic look, Brigham says to mix and match different frame styles and periods of artwork. If it’s a more modern vibe you’re after, “Keep lines clean and simple by pairing together only one or two styles of frames,” she says.

Dive in by hammering in the nails from your belt—doing so at an angle gives the pieces extra support. And not having to climb up and down the ladder to grab nail after nail? We’ll call that a win.