Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Thrift Store Inspired: Wall Art Collage

It's been too long since I've posted so we're skipping WOW wednesday today. Long weekends and vacations throw me off my blogging routine so let's dive on in, shall we?

I am basically obsessed with wall art collages. I love the look of one major focal point on a wall made up of a variety of pieces. My favorite thing is that it's easy to create a collage on a budget which is more than I can say for most large pieces of art. 

Here are some examples of some killer wall art collages:
I wanted to take this idea and create my own collage for our dining room. My goal was to create a casual, collected-over-time look without spending a ton of money. Here's the breakdown on how I managed to create a large focal point in my dining room without breaking the bank.

I began by using our new console table to determine how large my wall art collage was going to be, since it was already creating a focal point in the room. Then I started collecting my individual pieces of art. 

I took a trip to a local thrift store and found a few frames, mirrors and art. Then I grabbed a few decorative plates on clearance at West Elm to throw in the mix. Finally, I collected a few things from the house to help fill in the holes.

Next it was time to start determining my layout.  I started with my largest item, a mirror that has been sitting in storage since we've moved. It has a small broken piece on the frame and hanging it alone would have put a spotlight on its flaw, but in a group, it should be unnoticeable. I placed the mirror on the right end of the console table, opposite from the lamp to help balance it out. It gave me a large item on each side, one gives light, the other reflects light. Perfect.

Once I had my largest items in place, (lamp and mirror) I moved on to my smaller items which consisted of 2 black frames we already had, 1 light colored frame from a thrift store, 1 oval mirror from a thrift store, my 2 west elm plates, 1 random piece of framed art from a thrift store, 1 $10 frame hanging from a skeleton key and 1 teeny, tiny tile we had at the house. I basically played around with my options by holding them each up in a location and deciding if I thought it would work or not. 

These are the questions I asked myself along the way:
  • Does this seem balanced?Does it feel too weighted to one side or the other?
  • Does everything seem spaced out fairly equally?
  • Do I dig it?

I worked on finding a spot for one item at a time. If it worked, I hung it up and moved on to the next piece. I just worked it like a puzzle until I felt that it looked finished enough. The great thing is that I can easily switch things out if I get bored or I could just continue to add more items. The key was to have a variety of items. There are plenty of things that I didn't ultimately use this time around.

For those of you who appreciate a visual aid before committing to hammering nails into your wall, I suggest using pieces of paper cut to the size of each item. You can just tape these pieces of paper onto your wall until you find your perfect layout. Then jump into the nailing of items. I, however, went a little crazy and decided that I'd just throw everything up there and see if I liked it. If not, I'd start again. Nothing lost, just some extra holes in the wall. Luckily, I managed to create something I like...for now at least.

Here's the result so far:

I'll give some detail photos coming up soon. I created a couple super cheap and easy pieces of art along the way. All in an afternoon!

Until next time...


  1. I really like the collage idea. Maybe u could help me design one over our sofa ? :) Yours looks great ! Mom