Why Don’t You: Hang a Picture Ledge

Now that our house is in a more comfortable place, I’m turning my focus back on to the site (redesign almost done! huzzah!) and to my design business. I’ve picked up a couple new clients this month that I’m excited about. I flew to New York last week to meet with one of them and to help the other style her home after a big move. One of them has about a million framed family photos – and they are beautiful! So homey and personal. None of them are formal portraits, just sweet candid shots, lovingly blown up and framed. I came home inspired to tackle the monumental task of sorting and organizing and printing our favorite family photos. (still working on getting to that one!) :/

You all know I love a good gallery wall. I think it’s a great way to display a collection of art or photos that are different, but work well together. I’ve been thinking of other ways to display family photos besides the traditional nail-in-wall method (something like my friend Emily’s picture rails), and I am finding myself so drawn to picture ledges that look like these below – simple, mostly monochromatic, and really artfully curated.
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IKEA sells a simple 4′ ledge for only about $15. It would be so easy to make your own version too, with a few pieces of glued and pinned together lengths of wood.

I really love India Hick’s family photo ledges in her dining room. I’d love to do something similar in our dining nook. It makes me happy to think about seeing all the faces of people we love and have been inspired by every day, at every meal! And what a great conversation starter for dinner guests!
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Have you seen any cool/different ways to display family photos lately?
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21 thoughts on “Why Don’t You: Hang a Picture Ledge

  1. I love these! Such a great solution to a gallery wall. We just lost a bunch of frames during last weekend's earthquake in Napa – hopped right off the wall! Any suggestions on how to do the picture ledge idea, but secure the frames a bit more?

  2. I've been toying with this idea for our master bedroom, which we just repainted. All my frames are black and walls are now a beautiful gray. Would you recommend painting ledges to match the wall? Keeping them in a similar color? All these ledges are white and pale walls, and I'm just wondering if it's best to keep the ledges in the same color (or close color) to the wall behind it.


  3. I love these and have been thinking about them lately. My question for you is – do you think these could work with color photos or would it be too "busy" to have that many color photos on a shelf like this?

  4. To Chelsea, get a bunch of those tiny eye hooks and put one or two in the back of each frame. Run fishing line through all the loops and secure at both ends of the ledge, above it and in the wall using much stronger attachment to wall that is rated to take the weight of all frames at once. Best wishes!

  5. I absolutely love my ikea ledges. I've had no issues with the depth. I have 4' white ones in our living room and some shorter black ones I have yet to find a home for but for the price they're amazing.

    1. I made your diy ledges and they turned out great. My granddaughter’s room looks great and the books are tidy and accessible. Thanks for sharing!!!

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