July 18, 2022
Wall art in the home is a must. It adds soul and personality, and helps tell the story of who you are. And let’s face it, blank walls are boring.
If, like me, you've ever renovated or built a home and you've run out of money at the end, you'll now how disappointing it is when things fall flat. The finishing touches - artwork, cushions, rugs, lamps and accessories - are so, so important. They add colour, texture and style to the space, and pull the whole scheme together. Wall art in a home is like the jewellery you choose for your outfit, and it really is worth keeping some of your budget aside to make sure you can add those perfect art pieces.
To help you choose the perfect wall art for your space, I’ve put together some tips to remember so you can get the designer look - without the designer.
Before you choose your wall art, the first step is to decide how you want your home to feel. Are you going for a relaxed and casual vibe, or is your home more traditional and formal? Are you drawn to bright colours, or is dark and moody your thing? Are you going for a classic Hampton style interior, or do you love a neutral Scandi/boho style?
The interior style of your home will play a huge role in the pieces you go for, and it's probably the most important thing to consider when choosing new wall art pieces. If you have an overall style in mind and stick to pieces that fit within this theme, you can't go wrong.
So for example, if you love a coastal, beachy look, then contemporary artwork in primary colours or bold, mid-century modern posters just won't work. Instead, opt for light, neutral or whitewashed designs with touches of blues and greens. Your wall art should reflect the look & feel of the coastal theme, so opt for whites, creams and beiges with lots of texture, coral prints and frames in light colours or whitewashed timber.
Whatever you choose, you need to keep this decor theme mind when selecting your wall art. Prints framed in light colours, whites and natural oaks give off a casual feel, whereas wall art framed in dark timber, or gold leaf, will set a more formal tone.
Designer Erin Hedrick featured our Coral and Seaweed Prints in pretty springtime hues in this project. These soft colours give a relaxed, beachy vibe to the space.
Choosing the perfect wall art is a very personal choice, and my advice is always take your time to find the perfect piece. Don't rush into it. Ask yourself what appeals about it. Is it the colour? The subject? Or does it just have that special something that you loved as soon as you saw it? And lastly, is it something you'll love looking at day in and day out? For me, that's a really important consideration.
Great art should evoke emotion so make sure whatever artwork you choose brings you joy. No matter how valuable or exclusive an artwork is, if it's not something you truly love, then it's not for you.
I honestly believe that if you love an artwork, you'll find a place for it so don't second guess yourself too much. One caveat: If you love a piece of wall art that's the polar opposite to the style of your home, it might be best to take a step back and think about it for a day or two. But if you still love it, then go for it - you'll make it work.
Now to the practical - and very important - side of choosing wall art. The colour of an artwork, even more than the subject itself, sets the tone for the look and feel of the whole room. Here are a few ways to make sure you get it right.
There are a couple of tried & true approaches to selecting wall art by colour and one is to use accent hues. Pick out one or two colours that are already in the room and let this be your guide when choosing wall art. This creates consistency and it's an easy way to make sure your art works nicely in the room. Play with shades and tones of these accent colours to add interest if you don't want everything too "matchy-matchy".
Secondly, if you want the wall art to be the star of the show, then choose complimentary colours for everything else in the space to support it. For example, if the artwork’s main colour is a cool blue, then make sure you have other pieces in the room in warmer colours to make the art pop. Or, you could pick out a colour from the artwork and add cushions, throws and rugs in that colour to create a cohesive colour story.
Don't forget to leave some clear space in a room to let the elements breathe. Cluttering a space with too many objects can feel disjointed. It's a bit like putting together an outfit - a few great pieces is often all you need.
Designer Tonka Andjelkovic has created a stunning bedroom by choosing a main colour and building the scheme around it. My Vendeuvre Parterre Garden print in Indigo, and the matching wall colour and cushions, all in cool blues, combine beautifully with the warmer tones of the timber console and jute basket.
We all know the old saying, but when it comes to wall art, size really does matter! Without a doubt, most people choose artwork that's too small and it really can make or break a room.
To give a bit of context when it comes to size & scale, here are a few common wall art sizes:
Depending on where you're displaying your art, you can almost always go bigger than you think. The only exception to that rule is when you're hanging your wall art over a furniture piece; if that's the case, you need to go for art that's a little smaller than the width of your furniture.
For example, if you're hanging wall art over a dining room console that's 1800mm wide, you should keep the width of your print - or prints if you're hanging a collection - to around 1500mm or so. That way, the pieces work as a whole and the console will anchor the artwork.
In my dining room shown above, I've opted for a neutral, monochromatic scheme. I've combined eight Tropical Leaf Wall Art Prints in Charcoal and framed them all in simple white frames. Hung close together, they give the feeling of one large artwork and it's a great way of using smaller prints in a large area. This console is 3m wide, and the artwork combined is 2.4m wide. The lamps on either side act as a frame for the prints and the wider console anchors the space perfectly.
If size isn't the main consideration, then let's focus on how we make most decorating decisions - our home's decor style. More than likely, you have an established design style so when it comes to selecting wall art, you need to make sure that whatever you choose reflects your personal taste.
Whether you love Hampton Style, Traditional, Coastal Style or Boho/Scandi, the wall art you choose can really compliment your decor and create a home that looks polished & stylish. And with themes from dreamy abstracts to calming coastal subjects or minimalist, black & white prints, there’s something for every taste and theme - if you know where (and how) to find it.
Here are some pro tips on choosing the right wall art for your design theme:
These Sepia Palm Boho Wall Art Prints are great pieces that work in many styles and rooms. If you have a Boho or Scandi theme, stick to neutral colours for the perfect bohemian look.
Last, but definitely not least, the frame you choose for your wall art is a big factor in how that artwork will look and the style it'll portray.
Generally, black and white picture frames are timeless classics and are always in style. Silver and gold and also stylish alternatives and can really elevate your wall art to the next level. Our signature Faux Bamboo frames are perennial favourites, adding an extra layer of texture and interest. Depending on the artwork, all it may need is a slimline frame to let the art shine.
One thing to note when choosing timber frames - try to stick to similar tones of timber if you have a lot of timber furniture, or timber floors. If you have jarrah or mahogany floors or furniture, a blond oak frame will clash with the other wood tones. In this case, you'd be best to stick with black or white to be safe. Or go for a metallic gold or silver frame to give the room a bit of shine.
Here, designer Melinda Boundy has chosen simple black frames for my Kingfisher Feather prints. By choosing black, the frame doesn't clash with the timber console and wood floors - rather, it lets the wall art shine and the black frames reference the chevron ginger jars.
All in all, the right wall art can make a huge difference to your home and how it feels. It sets the tone for your space, showing your flair, style & taste. It also adds depth & dimension to a room, and lets you add pops of colour or layers of texture in a considered way.
No matter how you go about the process of choosing the right wall art, it doesn’t have to be hard, and remember - if you don’t love it, forget it! Keep it on point style-wise, have a bit of fun and and let your personality shine through.
We have a great range of wall art at Driftwood Interiors, and you'll be sure to find the perfect pieces for any style of home. And don't forget, we offer free Australia wide shipping on all of our wall art pieces.
Lastly, if you're still not sure which wall art is right for you? We can help with that too! Just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll help you find the perfect artwork for your space :)
Hope that helps your search for the perfect artwork, and happy decorating!
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