A very good friend asked me recently to help with some decorating and organization to her upstairs rec area. It is a bonus room area where the kids play, parents watch movies, and people (including guests) hang out in an informal setting. She has a beautifully decorated home, including a formal living room and family room downstairs, but this was the catch-all area, where all the toys end up. It has lots going on, but we are working on it one section of the room at a time. We started with the sofa and back wall. Here is the before photo:


She wanted a family photo collage using black and white photos. It is a family space, which is why she wanted to feature family photos. I thought that was a great idea! I got the frames from another friend. I had found someone selling a large batch of black wood frames on Southlake’s buy, sell, and trade page on Facebook. Unfortunately, someone got that batch before I did. However, I had a friend who saw that I had wanted the frames, as I had commented on them, so she sent me a message offering me her set of black wood photo frames. Thank you Nicole! She had recently moved into a new home and wasn’t using the frames. They went to great use! Once again, using the buy, sell, trade Facebook pages paid off.

Here is the photo collage we hung above the sofa:


My favorite place to get photos printed is Nations Photo Lab http://www.nationsphotolab.com My friend Hilary Grimm is a photographer and she was the one who told me about this fabulous printing site. The cost is not much more than getting prints done at Costco, but the quality is FAR superior compared to Costco, Walmart, and Walgreens photo labs. Try them once for enlargements and I promise you will be delighted with the outcome and quality.

We purchased the chevron fabric and my friend had her Mother-In-Law sew pillow covers for several of the pillows on the couch. That helped bring things together in the room and match some artwork that was on another wall of the room.

A simple greenery on the coffee table was all that was needed for that space. The kids can’t harm it since it is faux. Did I mention she has 4 children ages 4 and under?

in order to determine a photo collage layout I first lay all the frames on the floor. I did this right in front of the sofa so I could get an idea of how it would look spatially above the sofa.  I rearranged them until I got a configuration that I like. Then I hung them trying to use the same spacing between the frames. One of the biggest mistakes I see when doing wall hangings is things being spread too far apart. Closer is better.

If you don’t have a natural eye or instinct on configurations, there is another blog site that provides some pre-planned layouts and configurations. She has some great info! Here is the link: http://www.jennaburger.com/2012/07/useful-ideas-and-layouts-to-create-a-photo-gallery-wall/

Here are some more photos of the area we did in my friend’s bonus room: