Saturday, November 27, 2010

Welcoming Art Wall

With a couple days off over Thanksgiving, Alvin and I were able to create this art wall in our entry area. This is the first wall you see when you walk into the house, and it's always been so difficult to figure out how to utilize the wall. We've tried lots of things, but this is by far my favorite! It took a little bit of work and creativity to put it all together....

First, we painted the old armoire, which we use for our coat closet. Here is what it used to look like...
We didn't bother sanding, we just primed and then painted with basic white semi-gloss paint that we had in the basement. It took 2 good coats of paint after the primer, but we didn't worry too much about making it perfect since the it's supposed to look old and shabby.

In the end, we added some pretty clear knobs that I had in my craft bin, and put an old suitcase and basket on top to give it some more height and color. The suitcase was a $2 purchase at a garage sale and it stores a bunch of my craft goodies. I am pretty sure the old basket came from a garage sale as well, and it stores some of Baxter's toys. As you can see, I take advantage of all storage opportunities!!

The vision for this art wall actually started when I was playing around with the location of this yummy white shabby bench that I recently purchased at the Metrolina Expo Antique Fall Classic.

When I set it against this wall , and placed the big silver mirror on it, which was a purchase from Lowe's years ago, it hit us that this was the perfect start to an art wall. The old dough bowl also came from the Fall Classic and the gorgeous shells were actually a gift from Alvin's mother, she had collected them over the years on her beach trips... love them!!

So, once we had established the location of the big pieces - the armoire, the bench, and the mirror - we were able to see how much space we had for actual art. So we measured it out and taped our space down on the floor to play around with the layout before actually putting anything on the wall.

We actually ended up changing the layout a bit once we started seeing it on the wall and getting new ideas, but this is a great way to get a good start on things at least. The collection of photos/art includes prints and photos of Charlotte, a couple pictures of Baxter, an old music sheet, and 2 canvas paintings that Alvin and I made together. The frames, picture ledge, and little mirrors come from Ikea, West Elm, and Target.

(1) David French Print - There are 3 different prints framed in black and brown floating frames from Target, but this one is of our neighborhood, Plaza-Midwood.

(2) Old Pictures of Charlotte Street Cars & (3) Old Pictures of the Carolina Theatre in Charlotte (both from around 1930). I found these online and just had them printed out in black & white at Target.

(4) An old sheet of music with the title "Sunshine Kisses". I found a stack of old music sheets at the Metrolina Expo a while ago for about $1, and this one happened to be in the stack. Alvin's nickname for me is Sunshine, so this one seemed worth framing :)

(5) A couple pictures of Baxter at the beach and on a boat, we just couldn't resist adding our cute little guy to the art wall.

(6) Canvas Paintings that Alvin and I created together! Alvin just found a simple sketch of some coral and we used a projector to trace it on the larger canvas. Alvin actually just hand sketched the design on the smaller canvas. Then we just used some old paint that was in the basement, along with a couple tubes of acrylic paint we got for $3 each at Cheap Joe's Art Stuff on Monroe Rd. We tried to add lots of texture by keeping it thick and layering similar colors in each section. It was really fun and easy!

So, there you have it...I hope you are inspired to make an art wall of your own!

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