All too often I see artwork used as a styling afterthought. But it should really be an integral, even pivotal, element to a design scheme. One of my aims when designing is to reflect my client’s personality in the space. It’s great if a client has an existing piece with which we can work, to create a mood, to enhance the colour scheme, but it’s not uncommon to start with a blank canvas, which is exciting too. So, how and when to address the artwork scheme in a design? Here are a few tips to help you curate artwork in your home.

Photo credit: Swoonworthy.co.uk via Pinterst

Start at the beginning. If you have a piece you want to incorporate then keep this in mind from the start. Allow your decor choices to complement the artwork; in terms of colour, general feel and style. But don’t feel restricted by it; mix up genres, be playful, let the artwork stand out or blend in as you prefer.

Dining Room; Artwork

Image Credit: Flaviu Pop Photography for carolineanndesign.com

Whether it’s an existing piece or something new, think about where it’s going to be positioned and the space you want it to fill. Do you want something traditionally positioned, behind the sofa, above the mantle piece? Or, do does the space allow you to break the rules little? But think about scale and balance and don’t be afraid to fill the space. If you have a smaller piece of art and a large space think about grouping it with other smaller pieces, or mounting it in a larger frame.

Image Credit: littleliberty.com

Creating a gallery wall is a great way to curate artwork. And don’t forget, artwork doesn’t have to be expensive. Showcase your own photographs. Make it personal, use photos from your travels or family snaps. Even consider mounting fabric or wallpapers to add colour and pattern. My main tip for gallery walls is to plan it out before you start. The effortless look unfortunately does require a little planning and curation!

Image Credit: Etsy via Pinterest

Be liberal with your artwork. If you like it, hang it. And don’t limit your art to the Living Room and Hallways. The Bathroom and Utility Room shouldn’t be denied art. Have fun; inexpensive typology graphics can be a great way to brighten up a space. Or try framing some quirky gift cards for a child’s bedroom.

Image Credit: Flaviu Pop Photography for carolineanndesign.com

If you’re afraid to commit or just like to change things around a lot, try using picture ledges for an alternative way to display artwork (Ikea do a really affordable range). Or lean artwork against the wall for a modern, relaxed look. Incorporating art doesn’t have to be formal or stuffy.

Photo credit: myscandinavianhome.blogspot.se

My final tip: don’t hang artwork too high. The centre point of a single piece, or a group, should be at eye level. If you can, get someone to help and hold it in position first so that you can stand back and check before you hammer in the picture hooks! Other than that, have fun and be creative!