Creating a gallery wall for a boys’ bedroom

Updated on December 27, 2014: I featured this project in “My Handmade Home” over on, so please check that out here. It’s much less long-winded than this blog post. 🙂
Last time on the ongoing saga of Oh What Shall We Put on D’s Bedroom Walls, I showed you a nearly-done room with freshly-painted dark blue walls, newly-installed white board-and-battern, and a really cool rain gutter bookcase.
It was very simple and clean, but OH, did it need wall art!
Usually I’m pretty quick to make decor designs — impatient personality combined with a creative certainty in most things I do — so I was surprised it took so long to fill those walls.
I knew I wanted to do a gallery wall, because HELLO, my name is Heather and I love gallery walls. But it took me forever to figure out an arrangement that worked.
I wasn’t going to use only white frames, like galleries I did in the kitchen and living room. I wasn’t going to use only black frames, like the gallery I did on the stairs. I wasn’t going to use all yellow frames like the powder room. You get the idea.
I knew I wanted to use a mixture of colours and textures — oh jeez, this just got really design-snobby, didn’t it? — but I couldn’t figure out WHAT to use. I have a huge collection of frames (it’s an addiction) from yard sales, and my mom and my aunt periodically give me more. I also have a lot of little paintings and crafty things that I’ve done, so I had a lot to sift through. I wanted each item to be meaningful — not just something that fit the space.
I also had to figure out an arrangement. I spread everything out on the floor of our basement playroom/TV room a bunch of different times, and nothing would feel right. Did I want to do two mini-galleries, one over each bed? No, because then I would feel limited to keeping the beds there. LIMITED, I TELL YOU!
So I’d shove all of the frames and artwork back into my office, and forget about it for a while.
A few days ago, I got sick of tripping over frames — no one goes in my office except me, which means I consider it the only spot in the house worthy of being a dumping-grounds for random junk. I dragged everything back to the playroom and tried again.
I don’t know if it was the sheer desire to get it all OUT of my office, or if I’d finally figured out the right arrangement, but I did it. Then I dragged everything upstairs, and — with D’s help — nailed and/or 3M-stripped everything to the damn wall. DONE!
Welcome to D’s room … (again)
D is obsessed with farms (OBSESSED) and I’m obsessed with chevron, so …


Red poster is from a school supply shop, grey “Always remember you are so loved” was painted by me, blue square painting by me, two landscapes by me (I got new paints for Christmas, thanks Mommmm). Cute baby D photo is on the left, and a cute Baby Darling Husband photo is on the right.


Little Sis always makes fun of me for putting Cs in all of my gallery walls, but THERE IS NO “C” here. Just a six, because our sweet boy was born on 6/6/10 (it’s a brass house number from Kent). The red frame is a $1 cut-out I bought at Michaels and painted red, the yellow mat around D’s artwork is a piece of yellow cardstock, the “What is a little boy?” plaque is from when Darling Husband was a baby, and the “C-L-A-R-K-E” photos are free printables that I stuck in two three-slot Walmart photo frames and jammed together.
Like D’s new desk? I think it’s so fun! Our town was actually giving a bunch of them away, and tweeted that they were in front of the old teachers’ college for anyone who wanted them. I sent Darling Husband down IMMEDIATELY and he grabbed one for each kid, along with some extra chairs. D is in LOVE with his “real school desk,” and it meant I got to move his old one to the entranceway. Woo!
More info about our rain gutter bookshelves here!

Thanks for tolerating yet another post about The Boy Who Got The Worst Room In The House. I don’t have to feel bad any more about choosing a bad paint colour originally (too-pale grey = ick), and it feels good!

D’s room now has so many elements that I LOVE (board-and-batten, a nice bold paint colour, a gallery wall) along with kid-approved items (a funky old school desk, stickers all over the window) and lots of colour (the red and yellow accents in the gallery wall make me smile).

Most importantly, my obsession with gallery walls has been appeased … for now …


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4 Comments on “Creating a gallery wall for a boys’ bedroom

  1. Hi I'm BriAnn and I'm addicted to picture frames too. The ones in my unused stash are all browney blah. I need to get motivated and paint them all…

    Your gallery wall looks great! Thanks for sharing.


  2. Thanks, BriAnn! I paint 90% of the frames I use for gallery walls, because they're almost never the colour I want! I'm also terrible with spraypaint, so if I can't convince my husband to spraypaint them, I prefer to just brush on some house-paint or acrylic paint.


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