5 Things You Need To Know Before Starting That Gallery Wall

Photo: © Pheobe Chuason
Starting a gallery wall — or gallery shelf, gallery nook, or even the rebellious "cool-shit-leaning-against-my-wall" gallery — can be a daunting task. We sat down with Cristina Salmastrelli, art director of New York's Affordable Art Fair (happening this weekend!), to chat about the key things to know before committing to that "Keep Calm And Carrie Bradshaw" print you found on Etsy. (Or, you know, maybe deciding against it.) Ahead, her tips for falling in love with an original work — the smart way.
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Photo: © Pheobe Chuason
No Space, No Purchase
Cristina says you should first decide in which room your piece will live so you can "set the mood" with color. There aren't rules, just good guidelines to follow. "Yellow is a color that makes people happier, ideal for the living room where people want to talk. I wouldn't recommend putting something so fiery in the bedroom. Instead, grey is known to calm you down," she says.

Set A Price Ceiling
There's no point in lusting after some totally chic print you saw on Goop that's way outside your budget. Knowing your limit up front will save you a broken (art) heart.

Make Sure You Measure
This ties into the first rule, planning where your purchase will live. Carry a tape measure with you whenever you're seriously considering a piece, and have pictures on your phone of the spot in which you plan to hang it; you'll get a better sense for spacing and proportion.
Photo: © Mindy Best
Never Try To Make An Investment 
It may sound cliché, but ultimately you should buy something you love. "It should provoke conversations or help you rest in your bedroom. If it goes up in value that's just the cherry on the sundae. The sundae is the joy you get from consuming it with your eyes every day," Cristina says.

Remember: It's Not For Life
You can have a piece for years and then decide you want something new — and that's totally okay. Keep former favorites in storage, reframe them and give them as gifts, or sell them on eBay.
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