Using a Cork Board as an Art Display
Tips about how to use and style a cork board as a way to display art instead of a gallery wall.
This article was published , which makes this post and me old when I published it.
It took an estimated to develop this article from conception to publishing.
There are 963 words in this article, and it will probably take you less than 5 minutes to read it.
Recently I’ve been seeing gallery walls a lot whenever I am on TikTok or Pinterest. I do like the way they look, but it definitely all depends on how they are laid out. They have the benefit of flexibility, but at the same time, I crave some order or boundaries as well, instead of having to draw it myself (Grouping in the Gestalt psychology). Frames can get quite expensive over time, but there are some ways to get them cheaper, so that isn’t much of a problem. For me the biggest obstacle was that as a renter I am a huge coward when it comes to hanging things.
An example of a gallery wall from Pinterest
This led me to thinking about using a cork board and attaching it to the wall via Command Strips. It would allow me to be able to display a variety of art without having to put any holes in the walls of my apartment. My family had a cork board in our house when I was growing up where my mom would put up various family pictures and Christmas cards. I have always really liked the look of a busy bulletin board with things overlapping each other.
Looking for a Cork Board
I briefly explored linen bulletin boards, but they looked a bit too bland and/or modern farmhouse for my space. I wanted something warm and natural looking, which is why although linen push boards look nice, they didn’t have the same charm I was looking for.
A linen bulletin board that looked a bit too bland for me
The next part was just finding a decently large sized cork board that fit my space and would allow me a good amount of customization opportunity. I wanted cork mixed with a light wood frame because I felt like those kind of colors and materials were missing from my current space.
- A bit too small: https://www.amazon.com/18-Wood-Framed-Cork-Board/dp/B07B4JMFW3/
- A bit too small and wanted a light frame: https://www.amazon.com/Board-Dudes-Decorative-Distressed-Frame/dp/B06XJTM9ZR
- Love it, but less display area because of shape: https://www.amazon.com/INDY-VAC-Bulletin-Decorative-Hanging/dp/B0B63G291C
A cork board that I loved, but didn’t have enough display surface area
Then, finally I was able to find one that I liked https://www.amazon.com/Quartet-Bulletin-23-Inch-35-Inch-35-380352/dp/B000AMKKBC. It actually didn’t take too long to find it, the hardest part was trying to find a board without knowing exactly what I was looking for. I was really just looking for a board that looked big enough to hold a large amount of art. Then with that measurement, I taped out the measurements on the wall to see how it would look in the space first.
The cork board that I got
Populating the Board
I wanted the board to look intentional and beautiful in each successive states as I add more art to it, so I divided the pin board into zones, with each corner being its own zone. You don’t have to do this, but I knew that I wanted to fill the board in over time, and I didn’t want to move the pins around each time I wanted to add something new. I think that in the transitory states it looks really cool to see the board “growing” over time. To hang the art I am using clear pushpins from Target which I have really liked so far. I was used to the traditional red colored push pins, but the clear is nice because while you still do see it, it takes away less from what you’re displaying.
My cork board art display
Starting the in the upper left hand corner, I have some art from friends that that they’ve made for me and given as gifts. My favorite is some ornaments that my friends painted for Christmas. The first ornament is an album cover of a single by David Shawty & Yungster Jack called Green. The two-piece ornament is a variation of the Bonk Cheems meme that I photoshopped for a friend of mine, where instead of a baseball bat, it is a sprayer bottle with “pchit” being the onomatopoeia of the spray. The Mickey Mouse meme is not something that my friends made for me, its just one of my favorite images/comics, so I needed somewhere to put it.
Then in the upper right corner, I have various artwork that I really like. I used my picture printer (Canon Selphy) to print some Public Domain art from The Met and other places (best places to find Public Domain art).
- The Suspension Bridge on the Border of Hida and Etchū Provinces by Katsushika Hokusai
- Roses by Van Gogh
- Waterfall by MC Escher
- Ghost Trees by Frans Lanting
Then in the bottom two corners I have my own art. In the bottom right corner, I made a sticker collage out of some stickers that I had collected throughout the years, and in the bottom left corner are photos I’ve taken on my iPhone. Two are from Michigan, one from Seattle, one from Georgetown in DC, and one from Chicago. I used to be way more into iPhone photography when I was in high school, and have since drifted from it a bit, but I am trying to get back into it. Especially when I am travelling, I always try to take pictures of whatever captures my eye because I don’t think that my visual memory is all that good, so I want to preserve the memories digitally.