Easy DIY Gallery Wall Tutorial

 

I’ve been so focused on purchasing furniture and accessories for my home office that I’ve completely neglected the walls. Unfortunately, we can’t paint the walls since we’re only renting the space,  but this past weekend I just couldn’t stare at the empty cream walls any longer.  I knew that I wanted to add a small gallery wall to my home office, but I couldn’t find frames in the bright, summery colors in my color palette. Then I found out that Ace Hardware had paint sample pints on sale for only 99 cents, and I knew exactly what I needed to do! I headed to the store to gather a few supplies, and I created my own gallery wall for under $20 in only a few hours! If you’re looking for quick DIY home decor project, keep reading because this gallery wall was so much fun to put together!

STEP 1: GATHER YOUR SUPPLIES

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This simple project only requires a few supplies, and thankfully they’re all extremely inexpensive. I like the look of multi-colored gallery walls, so I knew that I wanted to buy three coordinating colors that were bright and summery! I headed to my local Ace Hardware store and picked up three sample pints of paint: Valspar Flower Power (blue-toned light pink), Clark+Kensington Designer White, and Clark+Kensington Tranquil Vibe (light turquoise). These paint sample pints are perfect for small DIY projects around the house, and all Valspar and Clark+Kensington pints are currently on sale at Ace Hardware for only 99 cents through August 31st! While I was at Ace Hardware, I also picked up three foam brushes to use for the project and damage-free adhesive to hang the frames on the wall. The grand total of my purchase was only $15!

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The next supply item you’ll need is a variety of picture frames. Check around your home to see if there any picture frames that you’d like to feature or re-purpose with paint. Don’t worry about the condition or color of the frame because they’ll be as good as new with a fresh coat of paint.  A great place to find affordable frames is the clearance section of TJ Maxx or Target. Look for frames in a variety of complementary sizes with different textures and shapes! For this project, I already had two gold frames that I wanted to feature, and I picked up three clearance frames for $1 to $2 each. The frames brought the grand total of this project to just under $20!

STEP 2: PREP & PAINT

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Before you begin painting your frames you’ll need to do a little bit of prep work. Practice laying out the frames on the floor to perfect the final layout, and then assign the colors to each frame. Once you’ve finalized your layout and color choices, prep the area you’re working on with a drop cloth or paper and gather all of your supplies. Don’t forget to stir or shake your paint before starting the project!

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Painting the frames is extremely simple. Lay out your frame on the drop cloth or paper and apply the paint with smooth and even strokes using your foam brush.

easy-diy-gallery-wall-6-3 Depending on the material of the frame that you used and the opacity of the paint, you might need to apply multiple coats of the paint to achieve a rich and even texture.

easy-diy-gallery-wall-6Once you’re finished painting your frames, you’ll want to let them dry in a well-ventilated area for several hours. Even if you think they’re completely dry, let them dry a little bit longer. You definitely don’t want random paint splotches on your home’s wall!

STEP 3: ADD PICTURES OR PRINTS

Once your painted frames are completely dry, it’s time to add your favorite pictures and prints!

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I chose one of my favorite wedding photos for my fancy pale turquoise frame.

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 I couldn’t resist adding a photo of my beautiful Mama and me to the wall! I love this photo us, but I definitely had questionable fashion choices in high school!

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For the last three frames, I re-purposed Lilly Pulitzer print’s from an unused agenda! I was just about to throw away my planner from last year when I realized that the monthly prints were just too cute to get rid of. When you’re looking for prints to feature on your gallery wall, look around your house for pretty items that can be recycled. Wrapping paper, scarves, and stationary can all become art!

STEP 4: HANG YOUR FRAMES & ENJOY

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The last step is simply to hang up your completed frames and enjoy your new gallery wall! My office looks so much happier now that my empty wall is filled with beautiful photos and prints, and I’m completely in love with the colors! It’s amazing how such a simple project can make such a big difference in your home’s overall appearance.

Easy DIY Gallery Wall with Ashley Brooke and ACE Hardware

Don’t forget to stop by your local Ace Hardware store by August 31st, 2015 to get Clark+Kensington and Valspar paint sample pints for only 99 cents! These pints are so handy for small projects around the house, and you can’t beat the price! This project barely required any paint, so I know that I can still complete at least a dozen more home projects with my paint sample pints. Be on the lookout for more easy DIY projects with my remaining paint!

What DIY projects are you planning? What DIY project should I do next?

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Getting help at the paint studio at Ace is like going to your neighbor. Visit thepaintstudio.com to find your neighborhood paint studio as well as expert tips and inspiration! 

$.99 paint pint offer valid on Valspar and Clark+Kensington. At participating stores 8/1-8/31. Prices may vary. Limit 4. Color samples must be tinted in unique colors. I was compensated for my time and this blog post. All opinions and positions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of Ace Hardware.

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Top 10 Things to Do in LA

Thanks to E! Entertainment Television for sponsoring today’s post.

what-to-do-week-in-la-los-angeles

After living in Los Angeles for nearly four years, I can safely say that it’s one of my favorite cities in the world. Southern California may be infamous for its bottle blondes, daily smog, and horrendous traffic, but the stunning scenery and diverse community that LA offers definitely makes up for all of its weaknesses! After spending a few days in LA this past weekend and watching the previews for the new season of the Stewarts and Hamiltons on E!, I thought that it was time to write a post highlighting some of my favorite things to do in Los Angeles. Whether you’re a foodie, celebrity stalker, beach bum, or shopaholic, there’s something on this list for everyone! Keep reading to find out the top 10 things to do in LA! View Post

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Letter to My Future Self: Clinique #FaceForward

Ashley Brooke Advice to My Future Self Clinique #FaceForward

Over the past few years, my life has been a blur of activity and chaos.  I married the love of my life, moved across the country (and back again), shared special moments with friends and family, and achieved career goals I thought might never come true. While all of these things have been wonderful, the extreme highs have been countered with the lowest of lows. I watched my friends and family battle life-threatening illnesses (mental and physical) and said my final goodbyes to my mother, two of my grandmothers, and my grandfather within a year’s time. When you experience a great loss, your priorities change in the blink of an eye. I’d always seen a clear path for my life, but I instantly felt lost and alone after losing my mother. I wasn’t sure how I could move on, so I tried not to move at all. I spent a lot of time laying in bed, looking at the window, and trying to find some semblance of sanity and order in my life. I decided that the only way to proceed was to live the life that my loved ones would’ve wanted for me. A life that would make them proud. Even if I wanted to do nothing more than cry in the bathtub, I had to move forward to honor their memory.

I’ve spent the last year trying to be a better sister, daughter, wife, friend, and person, and I’ve a lot of things about myself and what I want out of life. It’s easy to get distracted with the drama of everyday life, so I want to make sure that I don’t forget the lessons that I’ve learned on my journey. As part of Clinique’s #FaceForward campaign, I’m giving my future self a little bit of life advice!

Clinique Lip Pop Lipstick and Chubby Stick #FaceForward

CHERISH EVERYDAY MOMENTS

When I look back at the happiest moments of my life, they’re mainly small, intimate moments I shared with family and friends. Whether I’m holding my husband’s hand, telling stupid jokes with my brother, watching a movie with my Dad, or grabbing ice cream with friends, I try to stay present in the moment and cherish every bit of happiness. Small, ordinary moments are easy to overlook, but they’re the things that matter in the long run. In the future, I hope to continue to cherish each and every moment of my life.

REPLACE ATTITUDE WITH GRATITUDE

Gratitude is one of the most powerful forces in this world. A simple change in your level of gratitude can turn even the worst situation into a hopeful new beginning. Even when it’s tempting to whine about something in my life, I try to re-frame the situation in my mind and focus on being grateful. Someone else is praying to have the things that I’d call “problems,” so I try to remember that all of life’s stresses are blessings in disguise.

Clinique Even Better Brightening Moisture Mask Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel #FaceForward

BE FOCUSED BUT FLEXIBLE

In the future, I hope I’ll remember to stay focused on my goals but flexible in my means. Things can change in a split second, and life’s timing isn’t always on your schedule – and that’s OK. I try not to be affected by small setbacks in my personal or professional goals. If one thing doesn’t work out how I’d like it to, I try to find a different way to approach the problem instead of wasting time whining or thinking hope is lost. More often than not, staying flexible in the way I accomplish my goals helps me achieve something even greater than I’d originally planned. Flexibility in life doesn’t always come naturally to me, so I hope to continue working on this character trait in the future!

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF

For years, I had a bad habit of neglecting my self-care. Putting the needs of other is great in moderation, but I tend to take co-dependency to an unhealthy level. Over the past year, I’ve made big strides in my physical and emotional health. I’ve created a healthy sleep schedule and learned easy ways to reduce stress, but I wanted to keep up these healthy habits and add improve my self-care even more. I hope my future self still attends therapy and focuses on getting enough sleep, nutrients, and exercise each day. I also hope that I’m continuing to manage stress in a healthy way through any healthy activity, whether it’s a yoga class, quick manicure, Clinique lipstick shopping spree, or a lunch date with friends. It’s good to put the needs of others before your own, but you have to remember that it’s impossible to help others if you need help yourself. I want my future self to be physically and emotionally stable enough to take care of my family and friends!

 

Clinique High Impact Mascara #FaceForward

I’m sure that my future self will have learned things about life that I can’t even fathom at the moment, but I can’t wait to look back on this post and remember what it was like to be young, excited, and hopeful for the what the future will bring! Clinique started the #FaceForward campaign to showcase the spirit of individual accomplishment and celebrate the journey along the way to success to spark a dialogue with confident and motivated millenials, and I’d love for you to get involved in this movement! I’d love to know what you’d tell your future self, so please leave a comment below with your thoughts on life. You can discuss anything you’d like – career goals, fitness plans, beauty regimens, and anything/everything that can lead to a better YOU!

 

If you could give your future self any advice, what would it be?

Thanks to Clinique for sponsoring today’s post!

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Back to School in Style

back-to-school-shoppingback-to-school-outfit-ideabright-blue-nailsback-to-school-saleschristian-siriano-for-payless-purselove-love-love-love-shirtpayless-back-to-school-saleSHOP THE LOOK:

Shirt | Skirt | Handbag | Shoes | Lips | Nails

The beginning of a new school year always seemed like a fresh start to me. I felt like I could become a better version of myself every August, and I planned my “comeback” down to the letter. I bought the coolest school supplies, plotted my academic endeavors, and – surprise of the century – planned every single outfit for the first few weeks of school. Even though I’ve been out of school for years, I still get excited for the back to school season. I get nostalgic for school supplies – perhaps a bouquet of newly sharped pencils, and I still take advantage of the plethora of back to school sales at my favorite stores!

My style honestly hasn’t changed much since I was in school. In fact, I still have clothes in my closet that are from middle school! Of course I’ve gotten rid of my bedazzled jeans from 7th grade (what I was thinking?), but well-made basics stay in style forever. Every back to school season, I check out the sales to stock up on affordable, comfortable basics that will work for the remainder of the year! Last week I picked up these gorgeous nude ballet flats from Payless ShoeSource, and they’ve already become one of my favorite pairs of shoes. They’re cute, comfortable, and they match 99.9% of the items in my closet. While I love the design and functionality of the shoes, I loved the price even more! Thanks to the Back to School sale going on right now at Payless, I was able to pick them up for only $10! With prices that low, you can -and I definitely will- pick up a variety of colors to match every outfit in your closet.

Even if you’re not a student, check out the Back to School sale at Payless to get shoes, handbags, and accessories at amazing prices! This sale is definitely not just for kids, and I can guarantee you’ll find something that you love. Some of my favorite shoes and handbags are from Payless, and I’m always impressed with the quality and design. Why pay more when you get awesome items for less? Plus, their SoleStyle blog has a ton of amazing style ideas to inspire your shopping trip! You might even see an article or two from yours truly!

For more information on Payless, check out their Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube accounts!

What’s your favorite back to school memory?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Payless via RhythmOne. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Key West Vacation Outfit + $510 Paypal Cash Giveaway

ashley-brooke-key-west-lilly-pulitzer-straw-clutchIt may have been two weeks since I was in Key West with Stephanie and Christina, but I’m still daydreaming about the bright blue water of the Keys and the gorgeous scenery at the Gates Hotel Key West. In fact, I’d pay a crazy amount of money to be teleported back to their pool with a pina colada in my hand, but unfortunately I’m stuck in the real world answering emails, editing photos, and watching the rain pour down outside my window. Thankfully, these sunny photos by the talented Mike Freas from Foto by Freas are totally lifting my spirits and helping me remember all of our crazy Key West shenanigans! Keep reading to see my second Key West vacation outfit and enter to win $510 Paypal cash! 

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