Wondering what to do with all those snapshots you took on your last vacation? Try a unique way to display them and create a new tradition at the same time.
Several years ago we decided to display all of our favorite vacation photos on one wall. A vacation picture wall is a great conversation piece that lets you relive past travel experiences every time you walk by it. Choose a high traffic area so you can appreciate your vacation wall often. Our picture wall is along the stairway to our second floor. Other great options: hallways, mudrooms, a large empty wall in your living or family room, even the bathroom (though photos wonít last as long due to humidity).
To start creating your wall, just get out the photos from a recent vacation and have everyone choose their favorites. If there are too many, take a vote. I usually try to put up one (maximum two) photos per trip to leave room for future additions. Be sure to rotate who is included in the photos so that every child has at least one photo on the wall. When choosing photos look for those that exemplify your vacation; a favorite restaurant you still talk about, a toddlerís first dip in the ocean, or a shot of the kids posing outside your beach cottage. Also include some great scenic shots; these will add drama to your wall. Donít forget to label the backs of your photos with the date, location, and names of those pictured.
For the most interesting wall, vary the frames you choose. For a unified look, choose all wood or all metal frames with varied finishes. Remember the wall should look eclectic, thatís part of the charm. You can also add interest by varying the size of the photos. I tend to develop scenic shots as 8x10ís and frame them as is. Other photos are usually framed as matted 5x7ís. Iíve found anything smaller looks lost on a big wall and anything larger tends to dominate the wall. When you start out, try to develop at least 10 photos (dig out albums from past vacations) and donít forget your pre-kid trips! Once you have your photos framed, lay them out on the floor and experiment to find a pleasing arrangement. Remember, a vacation picture wall is designed to be added to over time, so donít try to make it look too perfect. Have fun with it!