Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Compton Photo Gallery

As promised . . . pictures of our latest project. I know you've all been on the edge of your seat, anxious to see them - ha!  Well, we are excited to finally have it finished. This post has just been sitting and waiting for me to drop the last picture in and hit "publish." Yesterday I got a phone call that our picture was framed and ready to pick up.  So, I piled everyone in the car and off we went to the framing store, with a convenient stop at Great Harvest (only because it's across the street, of course) on the way.

Now, this project might not look that big.  You might be thinking that it's just a hallway of pictures. How hard could it be? Well, when you are as OCD as we (Eric) are about straight lines, projects like this take awhile. It doesn't help that we had a ton of pictures to choose from, and I have ideas about what pictures I want to use to depict certain aspects of our life.

This is the hallway space that we have looked at a million times over the last five and a half years. Sixteen feet of gloriously blank and boring relaxed-khaki-colored wall.  When we first bought this house we envisioned filling this entire wall with pics of our family.

Three years ago we received a whole set of Pottery Barn gallery frames that we planned to fill the space with.  A super-generous Christmas gift from my dad and his wife, Norma.  And the picture frames sat.  Now, they didn't sit for the whole three years in one space.  Every once in awhile they would get in the way, and we would give them a change of scenery.  They moved from the office to the extra bedroom (which became Jameson's room) and then they moved to our room (where we would often trip over them in the middle of the night) and they sat there until this last major house purge.

It wasn't really that we were too lazy to do this project.  It was just that other projects had a higher priority.  And this one seemed big, and time-consuming, and well, daunting.  But, now every other project of more importance was done so we decided to take the plunge and get started.

Step #1:  Spread pictures all over our bed, move some around, add more, take some away and try to choose what we want to frame:

Step #2: Arrange frames on our bedroom floor and figure out how we want the pictures to be arranged on the wall.

Step #3:  Start googling ideas for hallway picture galleries because we are at a loss and finally come up with something we like.

Step #4:  Measure butcher paper to cover the height and length of the space we want to cover.  Then arrange the pictures on the butcher paper.  We chose to make a straight line along the bottom of the top row, and along the top of the bottom row.  That gave us a nice straight focal point for the center of the arrangement and gives us room for various size picture frames and room to build on the arrangement going up or down without needing more perfectly even lines.

Step #5: Make certain to know exactly where we want those pictures.  Outline each of the pictures on the butcher paper.  Measure the location of each hanger on the back of the frames and mark that location on butcher paper as well.  Then take a picture of the arrangement. That picture proves  invaluable in a few minutes.

Step #6: Check on kiddos and see how they've kept themselves busy:

Step #6: Tape butcher paper on the wall.

Step #7: Hammer the nails into the designated markings on the butcher paper.

Step #8:  Check on kids one last time to see what kind of damage they're doing (phew - not much, minus the water damage from Eliza splashing water on the bathroom floor while pretending to be a dolphin):

Step #8:  Tear butcher paper away as each picture is hung up.  Use that picture we took of the arrangement to remember exactly where they belong.

Step #10: Wait for final picture to be done at the framing store.

[Speaking of which, I'm going to give a quick plug for Affordable Framing.  I took a Pottery Barn gallery frame into Affordable Framing as an example of the frame and matte I wanted.  I left with their price list for standard frames that look almost identical to Pottery Barn's gallery frames. They are about half the price of Pottery Barn.  And they put the picture in and finish the frame for you.  And they have a lifetime guarantee.  And they are so kind, helpful and full of good ideas. Also - they accidently scratched one of our pictures.  This might seem horrible.  But the way they handled it was so amazing.  They called me immediately, got the name of our fabulous photographer, Daveen, and called her themselves.  They arranged for the re-order, payment and delivery of the picture.  I didn't have to do anything. Then when I picked up my picture they gave me a $20 gift card because of the accident. And, the project only took 3 days longer than originally expected. Such great service. And they almost always have a 20% off coupon on their website.  Enough said. Check it out.]

Step #11: Make sure that all of the pictures are straight and then enjoy a really amazing wall of memories.

Thanks, Babe.  Such an amazing job on this project.  Love ya!


Dana Gay said...

That looks great! cant wait to come see them up close

Daveen said...

Super darling, Jocelyn! :)