How to Hang a Gallery Wall in a Hallway

When creating the fun French-style mantel recently with its pretty clock faces, I finished that and finally knew (after waiting a full year) just what I wanted to hang in the hallway and how I would do it. Sounds odd, doesn’t it? To not know what to put up but I think it is a dilemma* many people go through with decorating their homes. So I hope today’s tutorial will help alleviate some of that fear for you. Let’s take a look, shall we?…



When I was younger, it was easy to move into somewhere new and toss up framed photographs of our family and artwork, but now… I wait and see what grows on me before doing any of that. 

*Total aside ~ as blogger friend KariAnne likes to say ~ Did you know that dilemma is spelled with two MMs?? I was sure I was taught to spell it as “dilemna,” but in looking it up on Google I found an interesting article about The Mandela Effect. Thought you might like to read! **I also grabbed out several old dictionaries and they also said two MMs… 😉

Love this mirror over the fireplace, but decided it’d be fun to move it into the hallway. Funny how it reflects the whirling ceiling fan blades and the one pot light in the ceiling. 😉
Here is our beautiful French-style mirror again! I was working concurrently on this post and the summer mantel post with this arrangement lying on the ground and hidden by the coffee table as I shot the photographs for the mantel post and for the patriotic decor post.
Sorry this photograph may look a little blurry from camera-shake; 
I apologize for that! I shot this picture several times with the tripod up against the fireplace, fully extended, the head pointing downward and also not being able to look through the viewfinder. 
Have you ever tried to click the shutter button from the front of the camera? It’s a bit nutsy cuckoo even with the camera on automatic focus…

How the hallway looked before

This is how the first part of the L-shaped hallway looked before I began ~ rather boring and only the one mirror up at the end of the hall and a scrolled-and-acanthus-leaf corbel I found as a single at HomeGoods about five or six years ago. Hanging anything below the mirror is a challenge because of the air intake grate. 
Not really liking the long corbel but didn’t have anything to really put there. I am trying out a small table in this spot that we brought home with us from California. It was jammed in with our suitcases in the backseat of the Audi last month. That’s another project I’ll be working on  soon… 😉 It isn’t working either (too short).

My thought process…

1. By laying out my photographs, artwork and mirrors on the floor first, it mimics the wall space I have to work with. I did this when I hung 15 different pictures and mirrors up on the wall at our last house, the Big House, in California.
2. Laying each piece out also makes it easier to rearrange items for spacing and whether something works on one side or another spot entirely.
3. Once an arrangement is finalized, it is easier to take the pieces and hang them on the wall. I just measure the distance between objects as I am going so I know how far apart a picture or mirror needs to be from the next one. 
My daughter helped me lay out this gallery wall and mark the
paper template. She is such a good decorator without knowing it!
Here is the Christmas post where this photograph was originally.

How to hang a picture gallery wall

1. The easiest way to hang artwork on a wall is by making a paper template. Do this by sliding pieces of taped-together paper underneath all the artwork, mirrors and other items.
2. Lay out all the artwork arranging it with spacing between each piece however it works best for you and your wall space. Pull taught each hanger or wire’s center point.  Mark each hanging placement behind each piece onto the paper template. Draw around each piece making a basic drawing of which item goes where. This comes in handy as you are hanging each piece of artwork or mirror up on the wall when it is easy to forget which one goes where.

Mr. Ethereal used to have a bunch of donated paper and easels from the office supply company for which he worked for 10 years. We used much of the stock teaching athletes new skills during the eight years Charles coached, and with our Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops before that.

3. Remove all of the artwork and tape the paper template onto your gallery wall. Hammer in nails, picture hangers, and put in dry wall anchors and screws for heavier mirrors and artwork as needed , using the template markings for placement.
4. Carefully remove the paper template and hang your artwork. This simple trick keeps your walls clean-looking and less holes means less filling of holes later-on. That’s it! 
As at our last home, I decided to hang the wedding portraits together.
Still need to get a print of Mr. E’s parents wedding photograph but
I did take a photograph of it and may be able to have one printed.

Here’s how the hallway looks now

I am pretty pleased with our “Hall of Mirrors!” It’s not really anything like the incredible Hall of Mirrors at the Castle Versailles but in such a narrow space it is the prettiest I can make this area, still having my beloved French style and reusing what I have. 
***Updated 2023: Here is the real Hall of Mirrors from our trip last July (2022). Amy and I soooo enjoyed visiting the Castle Versailles. WP won’t let me link this as the post must be “too old,” so here is where this post is, in case you want to read the whole post:
The photograph, below, is turning the “L” towards our bedroom. The large framed scarf is a framed piece my mother-in-law found at their IOOF thrift shop in Sacramento. The yard-long tangerine roses is one of two paintings I found at a Salvation Army thrift store in Temecula, California about twenty years ago. The second I didn’t buy as I just didn’t like it. 
The small Victorian rose portrait in a blue vase is an slightly damaged original by F. K. Levy. I found it unframed at an antique store in Connecticut, exactly twenty-three years ago. I found it on my mother’s birthday. 💝
The four walls in the two parts of the hallway turned out pretty well, I think. I didn’t share the fourth wall as there is only one watercolor of roses on it. I might redo and add more things to it as I open the last two boxes from the garage… ;)’
The one wall opposite the Wedding portrait and French mirror wall isn’t finished ~ but it’s a start. I am fixing the back of one picture frame and using E6000 to adhere a new picture hanger so our daughter’s junior year portrait can hang here.
It was bright and sunny when I shot most of these photographs and as I was hanging everything, inspiration hit to move the end table I refinished (Part 1; Part 2 herea few years ago right here. Perfect for hiding the air intake and it can be kept several inches away for good air flow but still not block entry into the craft room, left!
This is my addition to bring a piece of the statues from Versailles’ Hall of Mirrors… And a candelabra… 💝
I love how the mirrors themselves are echoes of the curved French doors and their transoms just opposite. Look at the gilded statues holding candelabras!!!

The Hall of Mirrors at Versailles…

Still on my bucket list of places to visit, Versailles and its gardens will be such a treat to visit when I do get there! I love all the baroque chandeliers filling this magnificent hallway with their brilliant light! The thousands of crystal drops and spheres of each chandelier and candelabra, the incredible gilded mirrors and huge artwork and sculptures, the ceiling paintings and French doors and windows… 
It is amazing that the castle’s interiors are still so well intact as the French Revolution begun in 1789  lasted an entire decade as citizens “overthrew the monarchy and established a republic… and ending with the dictator Napoleon Bonaparte”* taking over the government. 

*Wikipedia article on theFrench Revolution.

So this is my little Hall of Mirrors with a bunch of family and artwork tossed in! Let me know what you think… Thank you! 😊
Bonne weekend, mes amies,

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