Art of Display

When I was first married twenty years ago, I made it known somehow that I liked palm trees and pineapples; so then everything that I received as a gift from that point on had something with a palm tree or a pineapple. I think that is how the collecting process gets started and through the years I kept my favorite pieces and let go of the ones that I did not like. The way that items are collected through the years and displayed is equally as important as the items themselves. Family photos are included as a collection as well, and how they are displayed is very important. Let’s take a peek at a Gardenia foyer and the dining room wall of an Iris to see how display done right can become something to share with friends and family, somewhere in the heart of The Villages.

• Family photosWider-shot-of-the-Iris-dining-room-so-people-can-see-how-it-all-works-together
I often ask my clients if they would like to display pictures of their grandchildren in the house. The response is a mixed bag of yes, no’s and maybe’s, and some respond with, “Our realtor up north said we shouldn’t put family out on display.” The truth is that family on display is lovely and makes a house feel warm. However, if you are trying to sell your house, then you want the buyers to see themselves in the space instead of the family that currently lives in the home. So, take down all personal photos only if they house is on the market. Of course, if you have really cute grandkids…. It might help the sale.

• The foyer wall of a Gardenia
The Gardenia has two walls in the foyer; one is long and usually will hold a chest or cabinet of some kind. The second wall is shorter and backs up to the kitchen. The shorter wall is a great family display wall. The key to a great display wall is uniform photo frames, wall shelves and great pictures.

• Uniform photo frames
The way to start a photo gallery is to select the pictures that you want to use. We had five 8×10 pictures, three 5×7 pictures and four 4×6 pictures. Once the photos were selected, we bought frames in the same color; all silver frames for the collection. I was able to buy a frame with matting for the 8×10 pictures. The matting enhances the pictures and makes everything look better.

• Wall Shelves
I chose white floating wall shelves to add to the gallery. Photo galleries always look better with shelves throughout because it adds dimension. Since this gallery is in a hallway we chose shallow floating shelves. To begin, I hung the shelves first to create the shape of the gallery. Secondly, I hung the pictures dispersed throughout the shelves. Last of all, we placed small accessories on the shelves to enhance the pictures and add visual interest. This makes a great conversation piece and displays memories in the home.

• Iris dining room wall
This gallery is a bit different in that it is a collection of cars. The homeowner has spent a lifetime collecting small cars that are an iconic part of Americas driving history. For this gallery we chose deep black floating shelves because the black shelves would resemble the road.

• Hang the shelves first
I hung the shelves first to lay out the gallery keeping in mind, the wall is tall and we wanted to use the entire space. Once the shelves were hung, I added in the clear cases to hold the small cars. I hung four in one stack, three in one stack and two side by side above the top shelf. The clear cases were filled with small model cars.
• Add in Baseball
We needed artwork for the gallery but the homeowner did not have that many pictures of cars. However, he did have pictures of baseball. We used the baseball pictures to disperse throughout the car gallery because what is more American than cars and baseball?

• Finishing touch
The finishing touch to the gallery was the addition of large model cars to the shelves. The homeowner had some amazing large models in great colors! We set them out on the shelves to complement the small cars in boxes and it looked amazing. As I was finishing the display the homeowner was already looking at the cars and talking about them and baseball. I have no doubt that this gallery will be the subject of many conversations and shared time with friends.

P.S. –Attention, club presidents! I give free decorating programs! It is lots of fun and very informative. Call and schedule your club today or call Ruth your full service decorator at 352-804-2056.