14 August 2011

A word about walls

Bedroom shelves Side table

I have been packing a lot in the last few days, including my wall hangings: framed drawings, photographs and prints.  It's made me realize what a difference wall decor makes!  Without it, our apartment looks naked, less like a home and more like a dwelling without a personality.


If you want to give your home a bit more personality, try adding something to the walls!  Here are my tips for finding something to spice up your living space:

1. Go on an Etsy spree.
If you don't already have a favorites list on etsy.com, it might be time to start one.  There are so many creative and inspiring handmade pieces of art for sale on this fine website, not to mention vintage prints and paintings.  If you're on a budget, look for digital prints and reproductions, as they're a fraction of the cost of original artwork.

1. Anteloper print 8x10 by hillarybird $25. 2. The Royal Mile 5x7 by Artquirk $10. 3. Massive Ice Wall 8x10 by jeremymiranda $20. 4. Alphabet letterpress print 11x14 by 1Canoe2 $39. 5. Treehouse woodblock print by tugboatprintshop $45. 6. Loving You print 8.5x11.8 by dearcolleen $19.

1. 1950s Framed Barn in Winter print 18x12 by Mirandas31 $19. 2. Mexican Folk Art bark painting 9x36 by NayaStudio $48. 3. 1895 Chromolithograph of Eggs 7.25"x 9.25" by bananastrudel $40. 4. Bamboo framed nude velvet painting by thevintagesupplyco $250. 5. Deer framed stitch art 15x13.5 by ArcheryGoodsLTD $24.

2. Go Hunting.
My favorite thing about thrift stores, garage and estate sales is finding a special item for my home that no one else has.  Add to that the price, and the thrill of the hunt, and you can't beat it.

Living room corner
Shown above: Vintage photographs, found at a thrift store and framed at home, and antlers, also found at a thrift store.

3. Get creative/DIY.
You're not limited to prints and paintings!  Use trays, plates, fabric hangings and garlands to add interest to your space.  A collection of postcards can be hung from a wire instead of paying for a costly custom frame.

1. Crochet garland by EmmaLamb £36. 2. Vintage round bird tray by thetwosparrows $22. 3. National Parks postcard set by Ranger Doug, also available as posters, hung on a wire in my kitchen. 4. Handpainted Greek plate by retromodernhome $19.99. 5. Vintage sign letter M by claireferrante $35.

Many prints and photographs are standard sizes that can be popped into a frame easily, but others come in odd sizes.  That doesn't mean you have to spend a fortune on custom framing!  Use custom matting to fit your print into a standard size frame.  You can cut mats at home or get them cut professionally at craft and framing shops.  Ask the framing specialist for specials.  Often, if they use a scrap piece of mat instead of a brand new piece, you can get a better deal.  Use archival, acid free mats to protect artwork from yellowing.

Frames can be snatched up on sale.  Hobby Lobby and Michael's have rotating sales up to 60% off on frames, including custom frames.  Some thrift shops and garage sales have great frames for cheap.  A good frame can always part company with bad artwork and be painted or repurposed.

I found this frame in a thrift shop and replaced the fabric art with a screen for jewelry storage.

Decorating with your own artwork, as I often do, costs only what you spend in materials, and of course framing, if necessary.  If you're not an artist, and you can't afford to spend money on art, there are websites with free printable art:

From the Feed Your Soul website: "Every month I will share FREE ART with you from artists that I have invited to participate in the project. Each invited artist will contribute one print that you can print out on some cardstock and frame or even just thumbtack to the wall." 

Vintage Printables is a great resource for public domain images in high resolution, organized by category for easy browsing.  They are currently having some hosting issues, so the entire collection is not yet accessible.  You can keep up with their status on their facebook page.

What is your favorite piece of wall decor?  Please share in the comments!

1 comment:

Rosa said...

I started a frame collage like that in the playroom when we moved here. I saw something similar on pinterest and thought it would be a great way to cover my absurd amount of wall space! This post was really interesting. I checked out Feed your soul and printed a few for the playroom. :)