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Family in Focus

Simplicity is the key to creating a perfect family photo gallery.

April 2013

You have a thousand digital photos of the family on your computer—go ahead, order some prints already. A family photo gallery is an inexpensive way to put art on your walls and celebrate all those milestones. Plus, it’s not as intimidating as you might think. Decorator Ramey Caulkins of Griffin Design Source shows you how to build your own personal gallery.
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MAKE YOUR OWN

Choose the right location “Typically I would curate a photo gallery on the stairs or in a frequently used hallway,” says Caulkins. “Whenever friends come over, I see them pause to look at the photos. It’s like a
collection of photos becomes a collection of experiences.”

Stick to one color Monochromatic frames will make the gallery feel more organized. “Let the matting dictate difference,” says Caulkins, who, in her house south of Country Club (pictured), opted for espresso frames.

Don’t spend a ton “A good frame doesn’t have to be expensive,” Caulkins says. Great decorating mixes high- and low-priced items, she says. This principle applies to the photographs, too: A combination of professional portraits and amateur shots (even a child’s class picture) gives a gallery character.

Be surprising Add something unexpected. Caulkins likes to insert framed mirrors—what she calls “living pictures”—and other keepsakes, like her kids’ artwork, between portraits.

Don’t overthink it Randomness beats perfection. “Do not get out your tape measure,” Caulkins says. Instead, hang two or three pieces in the center, then build out and up, eyeballing placement.
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Ramey Caulkins’ favorite frames

Black: Black Finish Format Frame, $19.95, Crate & Barrel, crateandbarrel.com

White: Ribba White Frame, $19.99, Ikea, ikea.com

Metallic: Brushed Silver Wall Frame, $39.95, Crate & Barrel