5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall

A minimalist I will never be. The more to look at, the happier I am. That's why I finally decided to create a long, L-shaped gallery wall in my living room. Gallery walls are a great way to infuse uniqueness, art, and photos into a room. However, buying all the components can be a pain in the wallet. Read along for my tips on how to save money on your gallery wall and to see what I used to decorate mine. 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

1. Go on a treasure hunt for cheap frames. IKEA’s Nyttja frames are a great deal if you’re looking for a frame with clean lines—they’re only $2! NOTE: they’re not a standard photo size at 8-1/2 ” x 11″ and have plastic inserts instead of glass. To resolve this, I bought document frames from the Dollar Store to replace the plastic. They’re still a bargain at $3 a pop.

Buddha magazine art from living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

This 5 x 7 silver frame was also bought at the Dollar Store. It’s actually plastic, but looks just like metal.

DIY magazine photo rug art silver Dollar Store frame living room gallery wall 7 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

Thrift stores are also a great place to score some cheap frames. And if you don’t like the color of the frame you find…

2. Give new life to an ugly or old piece. Spraypaint, craft paint, paper, and glue are items most of us already own that can transform a piece into something grand.

I found this dragonfly garden art at Home Goods for $10 & snatched it up even though I didn’t like the floral pattern on the wings. Some scrapbook paper, Mod Podge, and whitewashing turned it into wall art that’s much more suitable for my space.

Mod Podge scrapbook paper whitewashing metal dragonfly garden art makeover before and after 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

I also used leftover paint from my accent wall to make over these shelves that were once black. Painting them the same color as the wall allows the milk glass to really pop.

Aqua painted shelves Opal Silk Behr vintage milk glass living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

3. Look for art everywhere. A good portion of my gallery wall was created by cutting out pictures from books or magazines and framing them, like this small piece. It’s actually a picture of a rug, torn from a home decor magazine!

Rug magazine art framed living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

I also bought this greeting card for the sole purpose of displaying in my living room (and the quote is pretty cool too).

DIY Dorothy Kilgallen quote greeting card art clip frame living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

4. Make your own art. My favorite way to do this is with artist’s canvas. I try to buy them in bulk or when on sale for half off. Another way you can save money on these is to buy one at a thrift store. Create a new slate on an ugly canvas painting with a few coats of primer or white acrylic paint.

whitewashed navy blue aqua white silverDIY quatrefoil canvas art acrylic paintingliving room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

I also painted this lion years ago when I was a freelance artist. I have a portfolio of old watercolor paintings just waiting to be used again and the colors of this one fit perfectly in my living room.

IY Watercolor art painting lion Fit for a King living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

5. Use an everyday object in a new way. These ceramic origami swans were only a dollar apiece at World Market… because they’re chopstick rests. I found them while browsing the aisles of this store, just checking everything out. They make great miniature sculptures to put on display.

Ceramic origami swan chopstick holder living room 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

Here’s a few more shots of my gallery wall, L-shaped to coordinate my accent walls:

DIY art repurposed items paint makeover living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

DIY acrylic painting art canvas quatrefoil macrame ZZ plant hanger living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

wall art paintings canvas framed art 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

antique drawing DIY acrylic painting canvas paisley Mod Podge paper mosaic infinity wood beaded necklace living room gallery wall 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall by The Decor Guru

Do you have any other tips for making a gallery wall on the cheap? Do you have a gallery wall in your home?

Thanks for visiting! Let’s stay connected!

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18 Comments on 5 Tips for Creating an Inexpensive Gallery Wall

  1. Really Beautiful Gallery wall. I love the blue walls too.

  2. I really like the hanging plant as part of the wall decor!

  3. Very beautiful display. I especially like the painted shelving to match the walls and the dragon you redid. You really open up a whole new world when you repurpose and redecorate things.

  4. Loved all of these ideas – especially how you replaced the plastic from the IKEA frames with glass. SO SMART! I wanted to use the IKEA frames but wanted real glass – I will definitely be putting that tip to use – going to pin this for future reference! Thanks ~ Erika @ Yay for Handmade!

  5. What a fun gallery wall!!! Visiting from the Pin Junkie link party and had to click through since I love gallery walls!! Following on Pinterest:)

  6. Nice tips. Love thrifting and good finds to make a gallery wall.

  7. What a beautiful, calm ambiance you created in this room! Love your colors, and your lion art?
    Incredible! Thanks for sharing your creativity.

    Val @ artsybuildinglady.blogspot.ca
    p.s.-Saw you at The Pin Junkie.

  8. your table top turned artwork looks awesome on that gallery wall! Some great tips, hints and awesome artwork! I love the lion!

  9. Awesome tips and great gallery wall!

    Pinning to our Party Board!

    Thanks so much for sharing your creativity with us at Show-Licious Craft & Recipe Party!

    ~ Ashley

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