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How to Make a Stairway Photo Wall Gallery

How to Make a Stunning Stairway Photo Gallery for Your Home

Learn how to make a stunning stairway photo gallery for your home! If I can do, you can, too! I’m not an interior designer, but I did come up with a simple plan that worked for me. I’ll share my set-by-step tutorial with you in this post! How to Make a Stunning Stairway Photo Gallery for Your Home

The wall above our stairs sat empty, sad and forlorn for three and a half years. Not being a designer, I was so intimidated on how to fill it, and to do it right the first time so I didn’t spend years cringing everytime I looked up there at something that looked like a kindergartner put it together (no offense to kindergartners!).

At first, I looked online to see if I could hire someone to do it for me. Sure! It can be done with designer frames and a perfect layout, for about $4,000. Yikes! I’d much rather spend that on a lifetime supply of wine and gourmet chocolate!

So, I mustered up my courage and just decided I had to go for it. The good news is, it was not hard or even all that technical!

How to Make the Gallery

Get the Frames

Go to your favorite frame shop and pick out a combination of large, medium and small frames. Add in some knick knacks to add some whimsy and personality. Like the first letter of your last name, or artwork, old doorknobs, sculptures, etc.

I got all of my frames from Kohl’s (with my 30% off coupon!) and Ikea. I probably spent $100-$200 for all of the frames and extras. I am not a technical person, so I honestly didn’t measure the wall before I went to buy the frames. I literally picked out whatever I liked and thought was pretty and didn’t think too hard about it. My thought process was that if I got too many, I could just return them, especially to a place like Kohl’s, Target, Wal-Mart or Michael’s!

How to Plan out your Stairway Wall Photo Gallery

Lay Out the Frames on the Floor First

Then, measure your wall and mark the edges of the wall on the floor with masking tape. Do your best to measure the angle, but a typical stairway is 45-50 degrees. I laid out my measuring tape straight on the floor, perpendicular to an edge of the room, and then moved it about 45 degrees up. It was not perfect at all, but it didn’t need to be and totally worked!

Then, play with your fames and move them around until you get them in the order and layout that you want. I did mine below my stairwell so I could look down over it from far away and see if I liked it from a distance.

Use wrapping paper to make a wall photo gallery, and tape to the wall

The Secret Trick – Wrapping Paper!

Next, leaving your frames on the floor, trace them onto some cheap wrapping paper and cut out. Two important tips – trace also the nail holes. This is the secret sauce to make it super duper easy!

Make sure to label the traced frames so you can match them to the correct frame or you’ll forget once you put them on the wall (Believe me, I know. It took me twice as long because I had a pile of papers and didn’t know which frames they went with!). One idea is to take some garage sale circle sticker thingies (you know, with those bright neon colors?), and put a number on each frame and a matching number on the paper. Use that ole’ knocker!

Then, arrange the papers on the wall with some scotch tape. Once on the wall, you may want to move them around again (which is why it’s so important to label them).

I honestly didn’t measure the distance between each picture because that made my brain hurt! Instead, I did the best I could then stood back several times and see how it looked from a distance. Having a partner at this stage really helps so you can tell them where to move them (or bug them to death – “A little bit to the right, no wait, I meant left! Yeah, that’s it. No wait, just a tad down. No, I said a tad, not a foot!”).

Mark the Nail Holes through the Paper

So this is the brilliant part that makes it so easy – mark the picture location by nailing or screwing through the traced holes. Then you can rip the papers off of the wall, and start hanging!

Here is the finished result! It took us about two hours from start to finish, if you don’t include all of the baby and children interruptions we had.

Easy Stairway Wall Gallery Tutorial

I am so pleased with the results and this wall now makes me smile every time I look at it! I’m inspired to created a gallery in my living room now.

I hope this helps you to create your own. If I can do it, as a totally un-interior designer, I think you can, too!




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Deck The Halls – Free Christmas Printable

My Merry Messy Life: Christmas Deck the Halls Free Printable

Let’s kick off the Christmas decorating season with a free printable! Here in the U.S., it’s a tradition to decorate right after our big Thanksgiving holiday and I love how the lights and decorations just brighten up the house and truly make you feel the anticipation and excitement of the holidays. This is an 8 x 10 picture that will fit into a picture frame that you can use to add to your Christmas decorations.

Click on the picture itself to download a PDF that you can print, or click here.

My Merry Messy Life: Christmas Deck the Halls Free Printable

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Easy DIY Nursery Wall Art {free tutorial}

Nursery Wall Art Craft Tutorial
Baby Boy Nursery Reveal
See the valance I sewed in the mirror? It was easy, too! I also hand painted letters bought from Michaels.

While I was eight months pregnant with squirt blossom, Grayson, my husband took Gabriel to see his parents for a week (I was too preggo to travel). It was fantastic – I had a WHOLE week to myself! I went to town decorating Grayson’s nursery – sewing, cutting, and painting. I love simple, cheap decorating and this project is exactly that. I based the entire nursery decor off a quilt you can see in the very last picture, made by a friend of my mom’s. It is such a beautiful quilt and I knew I just had to use it in Grayson’s room to make it a custom-designed room.

I bought fabric that matched the quilt to make a valance and crib skirt, then used the leftover scraps for the wall art and for the panels on Grayson’s consignment sale dresser. It added such a pop of color! I just love yellow for a baby’s room. The frames were leftover from our wedding, so they were free! But you can also get cheap frames at garage sales and flea markets. You’re going to paint them, so it doesn’t matter if you hate the color. Just focus on the size and design you want.

DIY Nursery Decor using Fabric and Paper


  • Card stock paper in colors that match your fabric scraps and nursery
  • Fabric scraps
  • Empty frames in whatever texture, shape and size you want. But, 8×10 is easiest because it fits a piece of card stock paper.
  • White acrylic paint or room trim paint
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
DIY Nursery Decor - Fox


First, paint all the frames the same color to match the room. I chose white because we had leftover glossy white paint from painting the trim in our house. I used a foam brush and it worked wonderfully!

Next, do a google search for drawings and silhouettes of whatever objects you want. I chose woodland animals. Right-click with your mouse on the image itself and choose “copy image”.
How to Print Silhouettes from the Internet

Open Word, right-click on the document page and choose “paste.” The image will appear.

If there are other images in the picture, you can crop out just the one you want by using the Picture Toolbar. On a Mac (which is what I have), just right-click on your mouse and choose the option “picture.”


In this example, I chose to crop out the deer. To resize a picture without losing its aspect ratio, make sure you hold down the shift key so it keeps it’s original proportions. Here was my result!

Now, print it, cut it out and trace it onto the paper or construction paper. Then, paste it to another piece of fabric or construction paper and frame it. I did a combination of fabric and construction paper animals and backgrounds to give it more interest. Voila! You now have cheap, easy and cute graphic art for your nursery!

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DIY Wall Art from From Your Favorite Wine Labels

Create Custom Wall Art Using Wine Bottle Labels
Do you have favorite wine bottles that have a special memory attached to them, but don’t have room to put them on display? Then use the label right off the bottle to create custom wall art, and making it look beautiful is surprisingly easy!
Create Custom Wall Art Using Wine Bottle Labels
I needed wall art for my kitchen when we first moved into our house, but didn’t want to buy run-of-the-mill generic prints. So, I decided to tackle it myself. After living in France for two years, my husband and collected labels off our favorite or most expensive wines as a keepsake. And the kitchen is the perfect place to display wine art!
DIY Custom Wall Art Using Wine Bottle Labels and Acrylic Paint


  • Stretched artist’s canvas (or card stock paper and then frame it!)
  • Favorite wine labels (soak the bottle in a sink of warm water until the label peels off without any trouble! Takes 30 min to an hour.)
  • Two colors of acrylic paints to match the room in which you’re putting the painting. I used a wine color for the background, and metallic gold for the accent
  • 1 or 2 pieces of scrap booking paper to match the paint you chose
  • Glue stick to glue the labels onto the painting (or rubber cement if you don’t mind if the labels bubble up like mine did)
  • Acrylic varnish to seal the painting
Make Your Own Custom Wall Art Using Wine Bottle Labels

Let’s Paint!

  • First, decide how you would like to arrange your paper and wine labels on the canvas.
  • Next, paint the canvas all one color and let dry (2-4 hours)
  • Then, glue the pieces of scrap booking paper onto the canvas, and then use a glue stick to stick the wine labels to the canvas (wet glue will make the paper crinkle and bubble up, which happened to mine, which gives it character!)
  • Then, to get the metallic gold effect, I took a paper towel and dipped it into a tiny bit of the gold paint and dabbed it on (like faux painting on a wall).
  • Last, seal the whole thing with acrylic varnish to give it some shine and protect your work of art!
My paintings proudly displayed in my kitchen!
This post is partying over at Tip Junkie!
Tip Junkie handmade projects
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DIY Wall Art for a Baby or Kid’s Room {tutorial}

My Merry Messy Life: DIY Custom Wall Art with Circles and Acrylic Paint
Here is my simple, easy painting that anyone can do to make custom wall art for your kid’s or baby’s room, or any room in the house. All it takes is acrylic paint that matches the room decor, alphabet stickers, and a circular object to trace.
My Merry Messy Life: DIY Custom Wall Art with Circles and Acrylic Paint
I love painting, but I’m no fancy artist. But I can get by making cute paintings for my house, HGTV style! I wish I could paint like David Bromstad on Color Splash…maybe in another life. 

Take your favorite quote and use it as a text to spread it throughout the circles, or your child’s interests and hobbies like I did. This could also be done as a wall treatment! Something I might try soon for my baby’s room. My inspiration for this painting came while I was watching “Thomas” show with my son on PBS! You can find inspiration anywhere when you are looking for it. They have this scene transition with lots of colored circles and trains driving through them.

DIY Circles Acrylic Painting Supplies

First, the Supplies

  • 16×20 stretched canvas (any size will do, but that’s the one I used)
  • Bottles or tubes of acrylic paint (any combination of colors you want to match the room). I like Basics brand because it’s nice and thick, but I also use cheaper brands when that one’s not on sale. The cheaper ones might take 2 coats, whereas the Basics will not.
  • Clear varnish to brush on to seal the painting.
  • A foam brush or an angled brush (one for painting the circles and one for painting the background)
  • Palette for the paints
  • Alphabet stickers – the color doesn’t matter because you’re going to paint over them. I used two different fonts and bought two packages of each font so I’d have enough to make several words.
  • A cup or other round object which you can trace
  • Pencil to trace the cup
  • Paper towels and a water cup for your paints (a cup you don’t mind getting paint on!)
  • A long, clear yardstick or other measuring device to space the circles out evenly 
Custom Circles Wall Art Using Stickers and Acrylic Paint

Now, Let’s Paint!

  • First, you need TIME. Once the kids are asleep and you can paint in peace!
  • Paint the background with the color of your choice, or just leave it white, using a large artist’s brush or a foam brush (foam brushes are super cheap and you can get a large package for $5-$7 at Michael’s and A.C. Moore). It will take 4-6 hours to dry, so I usually paint the background really fast in the morning, so by the evening once the kids are asleep, I can paint the circles.
  • Next, and this is the tedious part, you’ll have to do some fun mathematics. Measure the width bottom or top of your cup and figure out how far apart to place them and where on your canvas so they’re evenly spaced out.
  • For a 16’x20′ painting, you can fit 5 circles horizontally and 4 vertically.
  • Next, decide what words, numbers or letters you’d like in each circle. I spread some words over several circles and others just in one circle. Take care to make sure the edges stick really well so the paint won’t seep underneath the stickers.
  • Next, carefully paint in each circle. I used the foam brush because it has a nice edge. I used that edge to paint the border of the circle, then filled it in afterwards.
  • I had to paint each circle at least twice, and each time it takes 4-6 hours to completely dry.
  • Once you’re happy with the circles, peel the stickers off! I had some trouble with the thiner paint seeping underneath the letters, so I really suggest buying the more expensive acrylic paint.
  • Then, cover the whole painting with a few coats of clear varnish to seal it and add some shine.
DIY Circles Acrylic Painting - Create Custom Wall Art Yourself