HOW to display

So here we are, we’ve chosen some photos, now what about frames and getting something up on the walls or out on the tables…

Martha did a thing in her little magazine;; (speaking of, there is a mountain of info on her site on this to frame, how to group…just put in photo wall to her search is like a Martha world wide web..plethora of info)so years ago she showed this idea of using kraft paper to hang plates or multiple works, it saves walls..strongly consider doing this..and PLEASE dont put too much space between the frames, that is my personal pet peeve;;; here is the OTHER extreme..NO SPACE.

[image from Pottery Barn]

this is perfection in my opinion. i love it..i LOVE how the frames are butted against on another with no space between..i love that not ALL of the frames are black or have mats (I’m not knocking that, it works but see how great this looks mixing it up JUST a bit).this is a great look!

and of course we have to show a Heather Chadduck perspective…the pew, the hooks, the little boy, the photos are pretty standard but look nice, great unified black frames,,this is an attainable look (if we could find a pew like many of us are looking for a piece like that?!);

and from Haskell Harris {image from Southern Living} love the collection of old photos and mementos on the shelf

and here is a little sneak peak at a wall i am working on…

it will be a lot of this wood PB frame (which is not much more $$ than the Target knock off, on sale 20% off and free shipping often..great value..good quality, spacer and archival mat!) with some chunky silver and black frames mixed in..mostly white mats..a few no mats, and a couple of brown mats (yep i love choc brown with black and white photos)..i am using these keys and a framed book page and brown damask fabric (yes fabric) here and there to really create a unique look..the photos are all vintage family photos..i will share when it is finished.. and no it wont all match.

but matching frames and mats IS a great way to get a unified and sharp look, using all black or something different…like WHITE! I mentioned yesterday that Emily at chatting at the sky discussed with Melissa at the Inspired Room about decorating with photos and she uses WHITE it.again, very fresh..and unified and simple to achieve.

And just so you dont think decorating with photos is not chic, check out this image from House Beautiful..they did black and white on one wall and color on the other…interesting, this person must really like things organized! what do you think of this?

But back to mixing it up because i must confess that is what i like (i know you are shocked) The Nester did this great post for Blissfully Domestic on photo groupings, be sure and check it out..really practical and inspiring to JUST DO IT..because as she says it doesnt have to be PERFECT to be BEAUTIFUL. and this grouping on her table is beautiful..dont you just love how she has used the tiny frames with monograms and little words and children’s nice. fresh and it. i must confess i also love this look on a piano..not the most original idea but traditional and nice..why reinvent the wheel..just keep the tacky frames at bay;;

notice her frames are mostly gold..

mine below are mostly silver..i think i want to add some teeny frames like Nester..i keep this on my bathroom counter..we mentioned yesterday about having too many photos in public spaces..thus this silver tray in my bathroom..,i love these pictures of Drew and my husband but i like having them where just i see them otherwise my little home would really be overwhelmed with small frames everywhere..< br />
like right when you walk in the door!

seriously, someone mentioned on the last post that photos are great just dont put them right where they are the first thing you see when you walk in the door…whoops! i did that;;; oh well. i know what she means and it is a good point. maybe i should NOT be giving advice on this topic!;; here is an old picture (like nearly 2 years old!) of my entry…it is a very odd little space and tiny and this is what i did with my little slivers of it but maybe not for everyone…

Sooo, stayed tuned for more discussion.. looks like the photo talk is going to spill into next time we will discuss the Ikea resource and have comments from great blogs like here and here…and we may even get a perspective from new mom Erika at Urban Grace..she and her fab twin Darby and friend Marla have a ton of experience and interest in this topic.

See you soon..and keep leaving comments. I know yall are lurking!

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  1. Thank you so much! I needed this!

  2. Mary @ JPM Design says:

    There are so many different ways to group pictures, it's hard to decide what I like best! I do like the frames-butted-together look, I'd never seen that before (or maybe I have and didn't take notice.) Nonetheless, great post!

  3. Amanda @ Serenity Now says:

    I like that image from House Beautiful. I saw Martha do the kraft paper thing in a guest spot on Oprah years ago, and I've always tried to do that. I have newspaper on hand, so that's what I use. 🙂

  4. Leigh Ehrhardt says:


    This comes at the perfect time for me. Just got new bedroom furniture, and want to do a photo display on one now empty wall. Thinking of B&W photos, in black frames with tan mats.

    Would love to see more ideas on framing things other than photos, such as scrapbook paper

    I enjoy your tips and info. Miss you at BSF


  5. Shady Lady! says:

    Its your home, not a hotel. I say put your pictures out anywhere you want.

  6. Tracey Bower- Bower Studio says:

    I have to disagree with the comment about not having them be the first thing you see. I have some b&w canvases of my boys in our foyer and everyone comments on them. Even men you would never think would notice such a thing LOL
    I have family photos displayed everywhere in our house (occupational hazard) and love it.

  7. Thanks for your post, Holly! You know I definitely need this! I agree with Shady Lady — it's your house, hang your pictures where you want to! Everyone's definition of beautiful is different. I really like your silver tray….you might see that in my house next time you're here 😉 My mind is spinning…decisions, decisions, but like you said JUST DO IT. I'm going to try to focus on doing SOMETHING and be happy with it!

  8. Amydomingue says:

    I just framed a ton of menus of all things in these great metal frames, from our honeymoon, 5th anniversary etc. They are so precious and it doesn't matter to me that they only really have meaning for the two of us! I'm using your tips to hang them in our bar area. So thanks!

  9. Susie from Bienvenue says:

    I love going to a home that feels like a family lives there….pictures do just that! Love this post~

  10. Stephanie says:

    You got me! I have been lurking on your blog for a while now. 🙂 Sorry! I first read about you in BHG when they did the story on you and your house a few years ago, and I was happy to discover your blog recently. I use photos a lot because I love to take pictures and I can't afford much "real" art. I have a wall grouping that has been in progress for a while now, BW photos of family,including copies of pics of our grandparents in their 20's. I paint the frames white and have painted some of the mats a golden yellow–it look surprisingly good with BW photos! I am going to add more recent photos of our immed. fam. as I progress. I love it!

  11. I have been accumulating black frames for a while now with the intent of doing a photo grouping (or a couple!). Hopefully I will get around to it in the next month or so. I would love to know where you got the mats that are in the picture of your hallway. I love how the picture is off center. I am sure I could have them cut them at Michael's but if I could them inexpensively somewhere that would be wonderful!!!

  12. Cote de Texas says:

    I hsppen to love your entry – those photos look wonderful – can't wait to see the photo wall – it sounds gorgeous!!!!!!

  13. Wendy @ The Shabby Nest says:

    Hi Holly…lovin' the fact that you put your photos on a silver tray. It makes it seem like a single piece rather than a bunch of frames. Lovely.

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