3 Tips for Creating a Gallery Wall with Ashley Carpenter: Joyfully Growing

Hi everyone! I’m Ashley and I blog about home decor, DIY projects, and all my favorites over at Joyfully Growing Blog. I’m so happy to be sharing my top 3 tips on creating a gallery wall with you today! (Plus a free printable at the end of this post!) I’m honored that Ashleigh asked me to guest post on her blog – she is the real deal! Such a great friend and her style is one of my favorites.

Alright, let’s get into the tips!

  1. Choose your layout

This might seem a little obvious, but I have found that this can be the most challenging part of creating a gallery wall. I think a lot of people really over-think this step. So my tip here is to decide between one of two layout options: 1) surrounding a mid-line or 2) a contained space. I found this illustration from the book, Home Decor Cheat Sheets by Jessica Probus very helpful when coming up with my own layout.

3 Tips for Creating a Gallery Wall

2. Mix It Up

Mixing up the size, colors, and textures of art in your gallery wall can really add interest to the space. Try choosing frames that go well together without having to be exactly the same. You can even choose art that isn’t framed at all, or that is a stand alone piece like canvases, clocks, and mirrors. The key here is to choose pieces of interest that are cohesive when grouped together.

3. Choose pieces that bring you joy

If your gallery does not bring you joy every time you see it, you’re missing the point. I believe that decorating your home should not only be fun, but it should reflect a piece of who you are. Gallery walls are the perfect way to showcase photographs of happy moments from the past, or pieces of art that give you inspiration. They are a simple way to put on display the things or people that you love. Most of all, your gallery wall is for you. It is something that you are going to see every time you walk by, and my hope is that it makes you smile when you do.


I love taking a simple quote or saying and turning it into art by framing it! It is such a simple (and free!) way to decorate! I did just that with the 1 Corinthians printable above. Want to snag one for yourself? You can get your free download HERE!

If printables are your jam, I’d love to invite you to get instant access to my FREE Printables Library, available exclusively to my newsletter subscribers!

Thanks so much Ashleigh for letting me hang out with all of you today! You can find all of my decorating tips and favorite DIY projects over on my blog, stop by anytime and say hi! I’d love to “meet” you! Be sure to find me over on Instagram, my absolute favorite place to connect! 🙂

Spring Tips for Your Nest

I am beyond excited for the return of spring! I am not sure if everyone else feels this way, but this winter seems to be lasting forever! Today I am going to share 5 out of 10 ways that I get my home ready for spring. You can find the other 5 over at Ashley Carpenters blog  Joyfully Growing next week! I hope you enjoy and please do not forget to share how you get your home ready for the season!

Spring is not only a messy time for shoes with the rain, but also a time to update your doormat. I just purchased this beauty (with a “C” monogram of course) and I just love the green stripes. You can find it here!

Another addition you can add to your front entry is a fun springtime wreath. This is a purchase I just made and I am so excited for it to arrive. This particular wreath combines two of my favorite things, tulips and pink!

Some of my favorite colors remind me of of spring so this next tip is an easy one for me. Add spring color throughout your home. I have color all over my house, but when springtime hits, I love to update home accessories with fresh colors that exude springtime. Some ideas include flowers, books, napkins and photo frames.

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Changing or updating your bedding can completely transform a bedroom. I like to keep my coverlet white or cream and add fun pillows and throws depending on the season. Here I incorporated pink, lavender and mint.

Spring Tips Essential Oil

The last tip that I have to update your home for spring is not something you can see, but smell. I currently have an obsession with essential oils and changing the scent to coordinate with the season is something that I believe enhances the feel of your home instantly. Right now I am loving the Purification essential oil from Young Living.


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Guest Blogger: Ashley Burns

This weeks post is with Ashley Burns, an amazing photographer from LA and she is my first interviewee. I am having so much fun meeting Ashley/Ashleigh’s from all over the world and learning from them. Ashley Burns is funny and talented, total package! I hope you enjoy her Q&A below, comment and ask questions and I will be sure to get you all of her answers! Don’t forget to check her page out on Instagram @ashleyburns_


You started your business seven years ago, can you recall the moment you realized that your company started to take off?
When I would wake up everyday with a place to be or a to-do list. I remember being so excited if I had five shoots in a month the first couple of years, and now I work 6-7 days a week and that hasn’t skipped a beat in about 3.5 years. When I first started my business, I was a full time student and also working a restaurant job, all while hustling my photography business on the side. It wasn’t until I made my photography business my full time focus that things really started to take off. The biggest blessing was following my gut and taking the risk to build my business. So while yes, I never finished college, I was able to build a business that put me ahead, and more importantly makes me happy!
What would be the most important advice you could give to all of the readers on starting their own company? What do you think is the hardest part?
The most important advice I would give readers on starting their own business or company is practice patience, resilience, and the power of yes AND no. As cliche as it sounds, success doesn’t happen overnight and I think it’s important for people to grasp that and give 100% of themselves into their work, despite the initial reaction or outcome. Trial and error is what molds and shapes you into being a better business owner and making better decisions. Learning when to say “yes” and “no” is also really important. Say “yes” to opportunities that could benefit your business’ growth and get your name out there, but say “no” to anything that would result in compromising the values of your business. I think it’s also important not to compare yourself to other people in your field, or try to implement their brand into your own. Everyone is on their own timeline and journey, and there is room for everyone. Find your niche and live for your brand. Don’t live for what someone else has built.
The best, but hardest part about owning a business is that you are responsible for every decision and everything that happens within your business. It’s a juggling act and can be very stressful at times. In a personal sense and in the field of work I am in, I have missed holidays, birthdays, and milestones because of my job. There’s no such thing as ‘the weekend’. You definitely sacrifice your time, and sometimes memories, to create and document them for other people.
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Photo Cred: Jose Villa and Annie Leibovitz

If you could collaborate with any other photographer in the world, who would it be and why?
Oooh! Great question. There are so many photographer’s I love and admire. I would love to learn and shoot alongside Jose Villa or Annie Leibovitz. Jose Villa’s aesthetic is so magical and he’s really built such an incredible name for himself in the wedding industry. Annie Leibovitz is an obvious one, but she’s the queen and an absolute visionary. She’s unparalleled, and I aspire to leave that kind of mark. 
You love home decor, how do you incorporate your photos into your decor?
I don’t just love home decor, some may say I have an unhealthy obsession with it. Ha! Photos are EVERYWHERE in my house, to the point where I have to strategically place a mirror or art piece, otherwise I might start looking like Bucca Di Beppo if I don’t. I love a good gallery wall intermixed with sentimental pieces – I have three gallery walls in my house, all with different meanings. I also think a framed image can really complete a table.
 Balancing life and work is something that we all seem to struggle with, what do you and Brian do to make this work?
I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no such thing as finding the perfect life/work balance because I’ve strived to search for it for years, and I am yet to find that middle ground. So, I’m with the majority here. To me, I just do the best that I can, and I know Brian would say the same. We steal a night away for dinner or a movie every week, sometimes both, or we plan in advance to take vacations. Our schedules are insane, so if we have something to look forward to that is undivided and just about us, it allows us not to feel so bad in the moment when work is crazy. It’s important to take time away from the normal day to day to reconnect and be like, “Hey, I still really like you.” Just make time, even if it’s five minutes or five hours. 
Best tip on photographing interiors and people?
Good light. ALWAYS. GOOD. NATURAL. LIGHT. And a gorgeous space, obviously.
What was your most memorable photo shoot?
I have so many, but my absolute most memorable was probably my styled shoot last summer in a gorgeous loft space in Downtown Los Angeles. I planned the entire shoot from conception to execution and  it was so much fun to see everything come together. The vision turned out even greater than I ever imagined, and I have all the vendors on that project to thank for that! 
You love to organize, do you have any tips you could share with us on organizing our homes?
I’m a purger. Clutter gives me anxiety, so knowing things are in their proper bins and on their respective shelves gives me joy. I don’t hold on to things that I haven’t looked at or worn within a certain time span. That is how things accumulate and you create a larger pile of things than necessary. Purging is so important and also makes you FEEL good. Buying a label maker changed my life, too. I label everything from my pantry to my office supplies. In my closet specifically, I follow ROYGBV for both clothing and shoes which has been a time saver when getting ready in the morning. It cuts time in half when you don’t have too dig too hard for that shirt or pair of flats. 
What is your dream photo shoot?
A gorgeous couple with great chemistry, some beautiful light, and a killer dress. Sign me up.
If you could come up with a slogan for your life, what would it be and why?
OMG, this is my Bravo Housewives moment… “Apologies for the delayed response, I was busy making shit happen”
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If and when you come to Cleveland, we need to go have a great cup of coffee together!
Ummm yes, coffee drinking snob over here! I’m there. And if you come to LA, I’ll show you a matcha latte done right.
I hope you enjoyed this interview with Ashley Burns! Don’t forget to follow along on Instagram and Facebook to see some more Q&A’s with her!


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