August 9, 2009

All in the Family

I've been working on a new project in our living room over the last couple of weeks. Jesse and I were inspired by a Designed to Sell (love that show!) episode on HGTV where they needed to cover a large amount of a wall space on a budget. I include Jesse in the sentence above only because he happened to be sitting next to me and he actually responded when I commented on how much I liked the idea in the show, but I can't be sure he was nearly as "inspired" as I was. Just want to make sure the record is straight. He has a reputation to uphold after all.

For the last couple of years we have hung a collage frame that we received as a wedding gift and a couple of sconces above our couch in the living room. It's been fun for me to replace the pictures in the collage each year. I do this routine in January where I pick out all of my favorite pictures from the previous year and put them in the frame. It's kinda funny how something so simple (and free!) makes the space feel fresh. At least to me.

Anyway, the inspired idea was to replace the collage and sconces with a large compilation of frames. It's a simple idea, and I'm not the first person to do this obviously, but I must say the result is giving me a nice, easy and cheap solution for something new and large enough to cover my wall space.

I have to admit I was also itching to take down the collage and sconces because I had hung them too high in the first place. It had irritated me just enough each time I looked at it that now, 2 1/2 years later, I can't handle it anymore. I hear that hanging pictures too high is a common problem for people, so thankfully I don't feel alone in my mistake. But, it's annoying nonetheless.

I had several frames in storage, so I pulled those out and then made a quick trip to Goodwill to complete my set. We decided on painting the frames a very dark brown. Now that it's done I think it looks black, but oh well. Black will do too. I spray painted all of the frames and then added photo mattes that I had found pretty cheap at Hobby Lobby. I had to spray paint the mattes too because they didn't sell very many in plain white. That surprised me.

Anyway, here's the fun part (and pure genius if you ask me), I pulled a Martha Stewart trick out of the bag for this . . . I traced around each frame onto paper. Then, numbered the papers and laid out my frames on the dining room table in numerical order.

Then, I taped all of my papers to the wall to determine where I wanted each frame to hang. Once the papers were on the wall I was also able to measure out where each frames' hangy bobber was and mark the spot on each paper so that I would know exactly where to place my nail in order for my frames to hang straight.

Once the nails were in I just tore off my papers and hung my frames.

All in all, I'm happy with the way it turned out. I think I'll keep my annual January routine of switching out the pictures. Jesse did notice the other day that the compilation is a little heavy with my family . . . apparently, I can't help it, but I might have to work on that.


  1. Thank you for upholding my reputation. For the record, I don't remember that "Design to Sell" episode, nor do I remember the apparent conversation we had about how good of an idea it was. But, please feel free to continue to tell the story as if that actually happened. :)

  2. Looks great! And I believe Erin's version of the story :)