Nature Inspired Gallery Wall: DIY Floating Frames

This nature inspired gallery wall is simple and inexpensive to create! Display your adventure treasures with DIY floating frames for less than $20!

We’ve lived in our apartment for a year now, and we barely have ANY decorations on the walls. I have one gallery wall in Aaliyah’s room, and a corner of art prints in our living room. I have 10,000 pictures I’ve taken since she was born (no exaggeration) and I have TWO printed pictures of her hanging! I knew I had to get more of her cute face displayed but I couldn’t figure out what I wanted!

I, once again, got sucked into a late night Pinterest binge. Searching for “interesting” and “unique” gallery walls I got so many ideas… too many ideas really. I wanted floral hoops and gold frames and dangling photos and giant collages and okay basically all the Pinterest pretties. Finally I found this post on DIY floating frames and knew it would be perfect! I still had a stock pile of Pressed flowers from our Mothers Day suncatchers and knew they would look beautiful in floating frames. My creative juices started flowing and I was able to create this nature inspired gallery wall for only $20!

Materials Needed

  • Frames- 2 for each flower floating frame
  • Pressed flowers
  • Sea shells and sea glass
  • Driftwood
  • Hot glue and gun
  • Midge podge
  • Twine
  • Nails
  • Photos
  • Tiny clothes pins
  • Window cleaner and paper towel

To find my frames I hit the thrift store and the dollar store. I found the 8 small frames for 25 cents each and 4 8×11 and 14x 7 for 99 cents each. The grand total for frames was $9! The teeny tiny clothes pins, midge podge, twine, and hot glue were also from the dollar store, and I got our pictures printed for a couple dollars bring our total in at around $15!

Creating the Flower Floating Frames

To begin take two frames, one will be your front and the other you will remove the glass and discard the frame to create your back glass piece. Take this piece and clean it very very well. Once your flowers are glued you won’t be able to clean, and you don’t want streaks distracting you from your petals! Once your glass is clean and dry, start to plan out how you want your flowers laid out. I created rows and patterns with leaves and petals, if I had smaller petals I would’ve created spirals or mandalas! When you like your layout, take a small amount of modge podge and gently glue your flowers to the glass. Too much glue can show through your flowers and cause the petals to wilt.

When all of your petals are glued down take your front frame and remove the backing, this is why it’s a floating frame! Clean the glass well and then place you back piece of glass flower side down so that the petals are sandwiched in between the two pieces of glass. Move the frame clips so that they won’t show from the front and hot glue around the entire edge of back glass so that it stays in place. Cut a piece of twine and glue the ends down to the frame. Your DIY floating frame is finished!

Floating Frames for Sea ShellsTo create the sea shell frames I only used the single pane of glass. To start I planned out how I wanted to display them, and liked how the 8×10 and small wooden framed contrasted with the 14×7 and elaborate gold flower frames. I set the shells and sea glass in rows of similar sizes and colors, it reminded me of a sort a small museum display. I picked statement pieces like the abalone piece and sand dollar for the small wooden frames and interesting small shells like urchins and butterfly shaped shells from a gumboot chiton.

I repeated the process of the flower frames by hot gluing down the glass panes to the frame and attaching the string. I originally wanted to only do flowers and impulsively started adding the shells and I’m so glad I did! They look so beautiful when they catch the light!

Hanging Family Photos

Now that I had this eclectic collection of flowers, shells, and gold frames I wanted to find an organic way to also display our photos. While at the beach one day we found this perfect piece of driftwood: lightweight, relatively straight, and dark in color. I cut three long pieces of twine and wrapped them around the drift wood before tying them, leaving one end dangling down.

When choosing our photos, I kept with a consistent color scheme focusing on greens and blues with photos of us in nature. I think this kept it from looking like too many things thrown together! Make sure to also pay attention to whether your photos are landscape or portrait, I tried to only have three portraits so that the pictures would hang nicely.

When the pictures were printed, I took the tiny clothes pins and hung 4 on each piece of twine. I like the clothes pins because I will be able to easily switch them out for new photos!

Hanging Floating Frames

Because I had mixed floating frames styles, shapes, and flowers with shells I wanted to create cohesiveness with the layout. To start I hung the driftwood photo hanger in the center of the wall. To plan the frames I hung each so that it would alternate flowers and shells, as well as the gold frames with the wood. The sides are also symmetrical, with similar style and shape floating frames in the same place on both sides.

I am SO in love with how the floating frame gallery wall turned out! I love that our memories and treasures from our adventures over the past year are now beautifully displayed on the wall! I can’t wait to keep adding new pictures and frames as we make new memories!

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10 Comments

  1. Wow! What a cool idea. I would have never thought about making my own wall art. I have a beach themed bathroom. I would like to try this. Thanks.

  2. This is an awesome project. Love the step-by-step with photos!

  3. How cool! I love this idea. It looks great.

  4. These are so beautiful! I always wonder what the longevity is for pictures that are not in a frame tho? Love the nature elements in the frame!

  5. michellesillery says:

    Love it!!, what a fantastic idea!! One of my daughters is very crafty & Im sure it’s an activity she’d like for us to do together 🙂

  6. lisajakesmomma says:

    These are such adorable decor ideas! Very cool. I love the idea of bringing a touch of nature into the home, especially because in my family we are big outdoors people

  7. The Mindful MD Mom says:

    Love this! My kids and I love going on nature walks and using what we find for art projects. Haven’t tried out the floating frames yet though. Will try it out!

  8. I love the piece of wood picture frame! It would make a great way to display kids art!!

  9. This is so cute and unique!! i love the floating style with natural elements.. right up my alley!

  10. What an awesome idea! These frames and the wall gallery are beautiful. I can easily do this thanks for the walkthrough!!

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