I’m back with the next installment of the Capitol Hill Condo Tour! Previously, I shared our living room, dining/bar area, kitchen, home office, and guest bathroom. Now we’re on to everyone’s favorite feature: the gallery wall hall!
Here’s the thing about rowhouses. They’re dark (and can be terrible to photograph — this is the post where you’ll see that come to…light).
We’re lucky to have a lightwell in our hallway, which is essentially a window to nowhere — if it didn’t have opaque glass, it would simply look out on our next door neighbor, but there’s no exit point. However, it doesn’t provide significant light and this hallway is almost always dark and moody, save for a few hours in the early afternoon.
To give you an idea of scale, the rug alone is 22′, which makes me think the entire hallway is something like 28′, if not a big longer. The most common reaction to anyone visiting our home for the first time is, “Wow, this just keeps going.” It’s a long condo.
That’s why we had to do something eye catching and bold in this space.
Our Gallery Wall Hall
To be honest, I’ve looked at this gallery wall hall more than a few times and wondered whether we should have gone with four or five huge and cohesive pieces of art to try to make the space seem larger, but my style is eclectic and collected, so we leaned in (I’m practically known for my gallery walls, right?).
We did swap out the lighting in this space and, while these weren’t my top pick (Adam got to choose the lighting here), they do give it a moody feel.
The gallery wall itself is constantly evolving, always adding a piece here, moving a piece there, figuring out a way to make everything work. There are thrifted pieces, paintings I’ve done on lazy weekend nights, and lots and lots of old photographs and documents from Adam’s family (I keep telling my parents I need some old stuff so that it’s not entirely a history of the Shapiros!).
A few of my favorite pieces on the gallery wall include…
- A ticket from the concert at the Hamilton where Adam and I met (shout out to my friend Jen for keeping her ticket from that night!)
- The menu from our wedding at the Farmhouse at Veritas
- A thank you note from Lady Bird Johnson to Adam’s great-grandfather thanking him for a pair of evening gloves he’d sent her and complementing his “excellent taste” (his great-grandfather was close with the President)
- A set of bird dog prints I thrifted in London
- A Robert Furber December botanical print (our wedding month) that is fruit instead of flowers
- A needlepoint by my grandmother, who traced her Virginia lineage back to the colonies, which said, “To be a Virginian, either by birth, marriage, adoption or even on one’s mother’s side, is an introduction to any state in the Union, a passport to any foreign country and a benediction from Almighty God.”
- A push pin map with all the places Adam and I have been together
I’m often asked what our trick to hanging a gallery wall is and, to be honest, there is none. Maybe try for some consistency in color palette, but I have $1 frames from Goodwill alongside custom framed pieces. The only trick is in actually jumping in and going for it.