This is one of those teeny updates that takes 30 minutes to install but makes a huge impact on your home if you’re renting. One of my least favorite things about renting is the fact that often we don’t have the option to paint (like in the house we’re in now). To be fair, we’ve been here long enough and the kids have scuffed the walls enough that we could probably paint if we asked, but we’re talking a fresh coat of white paint, not the gallery mural wall in bright metallics that you see on HDTV.
So, it’s up to us to come up with creative ways to make our walls beautiful. We’ve hung art, put up floor-to-ceiling coloring panels, washi-taped kid creations, and done all of that sort of thing, but until last night I had never taped photos directly to the wall. I have to say…I’m a fan!
Backstory: we have one of those really shallow entryways that are common in older houses. You come in through the front door and there’s a little window and a little closet and if you take one more step you’re in our living room. Not quite enough space to consider it a separate room of the house, but still enough space to not want it to be the area where coats go to die.
Two years ago, I used a tension rod and some curtain rings to create a little area where the kids could get their own coats and shoes and I put our (the parents’) coats and shoes in the closet itself. It’s been a good-enough solution, but inevitably this area would turn into just a pile of crap on the floor or haphazard coats hung by their sleeves since Calvin doesn’t quite get the whole process of putting clothes away. Also, having all of the family shoes piled together in that front area was a little gross, since it was the first thing people saw when they came in the door and who wants to see a huge pile of dirty shoes? Blah.
Anyway, I’m in the process of breathing new life into the space and we’ve moved the coats/shoes/mudroom to our back door so we can spend a season or two tracking snow into another part of the house. (Rental carpet! Blah! Am I right??) I’m excited about giving the closet a new purpose, but that short shallow wall by the door posed some problems. Should I hang art? Use starch to “wallpaper” with a nice piece of fabric? Magic Eraser the scuffs off the wall and just let it be?
I used my Instax printer to print out a bunch of Instax minis, added them to the stack I’ve had sitting on a shelf, and hung them on the wall. I used painters tape both to hang them and to create a level line to balance the first row and keep everything from being crooked. Most of the Instax are vertical, but I added a border of horizontal images at the bottom since I had a few that just wouldn’t work otherwise.
It was a fast project and a little bit pricey if you consider the fact that the Instax film is about $1 a pop, but I had all of it on hand from a different project and I’m glad that it’s been put to good use. I’m also a huge fan of using the Instax printer instead of the Instax camera. Although I do have some candids mixed in, I would much rather have mini prints of my favorite edited photos than random poorly-lit, out-of-focus Instax shots…at least for this project.
I don’t know if I’m going to keep going up the wall or if I’ll continue wrapping the installation around the corner, since that would involve buying more film, but for now I’m really happy with this little update. It was also fun to go through the photos with the kids and I’m excited to have this way of remembering the babies when they were babies.
What do you do with your Instax?
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