If you’ve had a session with us, you’ve been lucky enough to have a conversation or two (or ten!) with my fabulous assistant/right hand man/girl Friday/saint & savior Erin! What you might not know is that long before Erin was the prompt and organized half of this operation, she was one of my favorite clients! I just liked having her around too much to only talk once a year, and put her on the payroll!
Since she’s been around a while, Erin and her growing family have had more than a few photo sessions with me, and have definitely had to deal with one concern I hear all the time with clients planning wall displays: what if I want more pictures next year? What if we have another baby? What if I run out of room?
While I would love to plaster your walls with portraits, I also feel very strongly that your display images should grow with your family. This is especially true when your children are very young and your family is still growing, it’s important to chose displays and arrangements that are flexible enough to adapt over the years.
One way we’ve dealt with that with Erin’s family is through simple photo ledge shelving. This wall is in her family room, and has a series of simple wood ledges running across the length of the entire space. It’s an easy option to adapt to any size or space, you could have one or two small ledges, or many more, in all different sizes. I’ve seen ledges like this everywhere from Pottery Barn to Target, but if I remember correctly Erin picked these up at Ikea.
By framing all of the images in the same color frame and mat, the different years and sessions all come together in a cohesive look. Also, if you notice in the image below, the frames are all different styles and textures, the only thing in common is the color. That gives you some flexibility in finding frames (coming from someone who was one frame short of a whole wall matching and the style was discontinued, this is very helpful!) but again, keeps the similar look.
The best part about the ledges is that nothing is permanent. Some of these images used to hang on the wall, or even over the mantle. But as the family grew (and the family of four portrait was no longer accurate!) the portraits were rearranged to accommodate. Of course, we don’t want to take these images down… just because things have changed doesn’t mean we don’t cherish that time in the family or those memories made, but we shuffle around to reflect the new focus and include the new memories too!
As always, you can check out the full series of blog posts and our other portrait gallery design inspiration and resources on our website, in the on display section.