Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Make: Ribbons of Photos for Decorating the Walls

Filling blank wall space cost effectively is always a challenge. Creating art that tells a story and stands the test of time is an even greater challenge. Never one to back away from a challenge, to celebrate cubes' return home from the hospital (and our belated anniversary), I wanted to add some memorable art to our bedroom wall. My solution? Repurpose decorations from our 10/10/10 wedding.
Delicata Squash Recipe
In 2010 my husband and I had two wedding ceremonies, an unofficial ceremony out at Burning Man under Syzygryd and one in San Francisco at the Swedish American Hall. As not everyone who was attending our SF wedding was able to make it out to the desert to be with us, I decided to decorate a hallway between the reception and the happy hour halls with photos from our Burning Man wedding. Our venue didn't allow us to tape decorations to the walls so I got creative; I looped ribbons over the banister of a stairway and secured the end of the ribbon to itself with safety pins.
Because I'd already affixed the photographs to ribbons, I didn't have to repeat this step. To get the photos in a pleasing, somewhat chronological layout, I figured out how much area I had available, roughly a 4' by 4' space. I then marked off that amount of space on our living room floor to make arranging and rearranging easier. I had an odd number of photos 37 which almost divided nicely into six strands of six photos each. With a mix of horizontal and vertical shots, I chose an arrangement of two paired ribbons of roughly the same length. Some ribbons were all vertical shots, some all horizontal shots, and some a mix. I also tried to balance light and dark photos so that the display wasn't visually lopsided. When I had an arrangement that I liked I taped the photos to the ribbons (I actually did this late one night a few days before our wedding with cubes and a couple of friends so we were all busy cutting ribbon and taping photos to the ribbons.)
For this project, the ribbons were going to hang over our bed so I laid the ribbons out on our bed and rearranged the strands until I liked the lengths of the strands as well as the mix of light and dark photos.
How to Create Photo Ribbon Wall Art
To ensure that I didn't put more nails into the wall than I needed to, I placed newsprint paper under the ribbons, laid them out, measured the spacing, and marked where the nails would go. I secured safety pins to the tops of each ribbon strand with an inch of overlapping ribbon above the pin. To transfer my arrangement to the wall, I taped the paper up on the wall, checked that it was level, and then nailed through the paper where I had marked. I placed the nails at an angle so that I could hook the safety pins over the nail head and hang the ribbons. This gives me the flexibility to take the ribbons down and hang other photos on them if I want to in the future. Once I was happy with how the ribbons were laying, I tore the paper off the wall. I finished the project by using Hollywood Fashion tape to secure the ribbon and photographs to the wall.
DIY Photo Ribbon Wall Art
I'll reveal the final display when I share our completed bedroom. In true blogger fashion, if you look to the right or left of our bed you'll find stacks of books, in progress projects, and electronics.
How do you display photos in your home?
Ciao Bella!
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Credits: All layouts designed by and images taken by Eden Hensley Silverstein for The Road to the Good Life.