I shudder just thinking about all of the nailing, straightening, renailing, restraightening, etc, etc, etc.
So that’s why we’ve been living for two months with our living room like this:
We did have a lovely Christmas wreath of real pine hanging above the fireplace for a time. But it still looked a little weeny hanging up there all by itself on that huge blank wall.
So I finally had enough. I was not going to let that wall and my fear of picture hanging get the best of me any longer. But let me back up. Because despite what you may think, it took a few improvements even to get this fireplace wall looking this good.
Here’s what it looked like when we moved in:
Compared to once we patched and painted:
Now this is where the real story begins.
Turns out that starting to clean up the guest room was a good idea. I came across all kinds of really great framed pictures that were hanging out all lonely in the corner. Just the types of wall hangings I needed, namely, free.
I spent about 30 minutes laying out various arrangements of the frames on the floor and finally landed on this grouping of five.
Once I had an arrangement I liked, I traced the edges onto a sheet of kraft paper so that all of the hanging mechanisms landed on the paper:
Then I taped the paper above the fireplace so the arrangement would be centered on the wall. I needed to call in my handy assistant from his guest room cord-untangling duties to help with this part. It took a few tries to get it right.
Then, you guessed it. I nailed right through that kraft paper. You probably don’t need a picture to see how that went down, but I kind of like this one:
Once the nails were in, I took them back out, tore the paper down (quite aggressively to be honest), put the nails right back in their respective holes, and hung the pictures on their respective nails. Felt pretty good hanging up that first frame:
And then…ta da! All five frames. Perfectly hung on the first try.
You might notice that one of the frames needs something in it. Still brainstorming that one. But already enjoying an almost-finished project that has completely changed the look of our living room. And also one step closer to having a functional guest room thanks to a little re-purposing of clutter.
As for that pesky exposed outlet. We’re just going to pick up a solid outlet cover and paint it (along with the nail heads) the same color as the wall. Should blend in quite well.
PS: Maybe the best part of this arrangement is that each picture has a story. Top middle is just one piece of a big wall-hanging from my parent’s house that I remember from middle school. Bottom left was painted for me by Emily while she was still in high school. And bottom right is a block print I absolutely loved the minute I saw at the Renegade Craft Fair one year. Top right, not so much a story as just a cool frame.