Or the gruesome reality of creating a balanced picture gallery with very limited DIY skills and poor quality picture frames
This is a step by step guide of how to create a modern but chique look for your home office on a tight budget.
1. Buy 6 picture frames online. If you buy cheap ones like me, they probably don’t come with a fitting frame so you will have to spend double the amount you were planning to, to get what you need.
2. Select some nice photos from your own files or go and find them online. Make sure they are of a high quality. Use a tool on your phone or laptop to adjust them to black and white, for a sophisticated look.
3. Fingers crossed your packages won’t be delivered at some random gas station in another village, 5 km from home, like mine. For the record: I live in the city center of a big city, next to the regular drop off point.
4. Try to unwrap the picture frames without getting lost in enormous amounts of packaging waste.
5. Turn the frame over, upside down. Get the little black iron things to loosen their grip on the back board. Try not to loose any of your nails in the process. Swearing when one of these black things digs its way under your nail is allowed.
6. Remove the back and take the plastic film from both (?!) sides of the clear plastic that should imitate glass. It’s not glass. Regret you’ve bought the cheap stuff.
7. First put the fitting frame in, than add the black and white photo up side down and use some Scottish tape to keep it in place. Be careful, the fitting frame has two sides as well. Be sure to use the right side.
8. Find out you can barely put back the combination of fake glass, fitting frame, photo and back cover inside the picture frame. Swear some more. Bend some of the black iron things in unnatural ways to get the job done. Damage the back cover in numerous places in the proces.
9. Congratulations, you succeeded. 5 more to go. Repeat step 1 to 8.
10. Are you tired of it? But the best part is yet to come: the part with the hammer.
11. Start the camera, use time laps. This way it looks like you can hang pictures really fast.
12. Test which picture height suits you. Do this by grabbing a random frame and keep it awkwardly above your head on the wall.
13. Decide there’s no way to know where to slam the first nail in the wall so randomly start hammering away.
14. First picture looks pretty good. Now add the bottom one. Pretend to measure something, than give it up and slam the next nail in, appropriately in the right place below the first.
12. Not bad. Just 2 centimeters off. And it should be a bit lower too, to leave more space between the frames. Just take the nail out and do it again. Don’t even try to measure.
13. Now the hard part. The third picture. First measure the height from the first nail to the floor. Try to put the third nail in at the same height, but slightly more to the left. Hammer away.
14. Find out the floor is uneven. The ceiling is as well. Or your measuring tape is defective. Remove nail and do it again, but trust your intuition this time.
15. Find out that cheap picture frames come with variation in the place of the screw eye. Measuring to get them align is therefore completely useless.
16. Just plough through the horrible task of getting the pictures to hang in a straight line and with similar distances between the frames. Cover up any holes in the wall with the frames. No one will ever know. Not unless you remove said frames. Pledge to never remove them.
17. The measuring tape is back in the game. Use it to check if the distance between the six frames is similar. find out they are not really, but what’s in a centimeter?
18. Celebrate your tedious task is done. Complement yourself. And remember, no one knows. Except for your mom. She will immediately know what you have done. Decide she’s not welcome in your home office anyways.
19. Create a silly movie of you hanging the picture frames and pretend you know what you were doing. Add a French chanson for extra effect.
20. Invite people over in your home office and drink wine. It’s France. It’s allowed to drink wine and do business in France. Exploit this.
I hope these steps are useful to you! Please share or comment and let me know what you think.