13 Brilliant Tips for Decorating with LDS Gospel Art
It can be a challenge to decorate your home with LDS gospel art! I totally get it. As a mom of two who has lived in nine homes in nine years of marriage, I've had my fair share of decorating and re-decorating.
It’s absolutely possible to fill your home with LDS gospel art in a harmonious and delightful way and I’m going to teach you some tools that I’ve learned over the years that will help you with the process.
Stay tuned, and by the end of this, you will have the tools and knowledge you need to decorate your latter-day saint home like a pro.
1. A Christ-Centered Home: “Many voices from the world in which we live tell us we should live at a frantic pace. There is always more to do and more to accomplish. Yet deep inside each of us is a need to have a place of refuge where peace and serenity prevail, a place where we can reset, regroup, and reenergize to prepare for future pressures. The ideal place for that peace is within the walls of our own homes, where we have done all we can to make the Lord Jesus Christ the centerpiece.” -Elder Richard G. Scott, For Peace at Home.
2. Choose a Focal Point: If you’re planning on displaying, for example, a painting of Jesus Christ, order the largest size and make it your center piece. Then add smaller images and decor around your centerpiece. Incorporate the colors from the art that you’re using to bring unity to the area you’re decorating. Examples of decor could include, a small statue of the Christus, candles (and candle holders) to represent the light of Christ, small pictures of loved ones, and figurine of the temple.
3. Make it Unique to You: If you're creating a gallery wall, include supporting items around your main piece that are personal and important to you. Examples of this can be genealogy charts (you can make these here: familysearch.org), family pictures, wedding pictures, a favorite quote or scripture, a framed temple sealing certificate, a picture of the temple you were married in, mission pictures and more.
"Just as we feel the Spirit of the Lord in the clean, orderly surroundings of a chapel or a temple, we can more easily invite the Spirit of the Lord into our homes by making them clean and orderly. No home, no matter how costly, is beautiful if it isn't neat. Even an impoverished home can be beautiful if everything is orderly. We find an increased spirituality and reverence when our home is clean." -Dale C. Mouritsen and Marta C. Mouritsen, Making Home and Holy Place
4. Aesthetic Harmony: Match the frames of your LDS gospel art with the style of your home. If your home has accents of dark wood, choose wooden frames made of cherry or walnut. If your home has a modern farmhouse feel, go for light gray or white frames and maple wood. If you care for a modern or minimalist look, use simpler, slimmer frames for your art and decor with clean straight lines. (Include internal link to examples.) Try to have a common theme throughout your home of similar woods, colors and decor to create a sense of harmony and balance.
5. Arranging your Home Decor: Use a template to arrange multiple photos together to create a gallery wall. There are many templates available on Pinterest that can help you choose the appropriate photo sizes and spacing between your pictures. According to marthastewart.com, you should “hang art so that its midpoint is between 57 and 60 inches from the floor. Go for the lower end of the range if most members of your household are on the short side; in rooms with ceilings higher than eight feet, artwork can be hung a little higher than 60 inches.” In addition, you should space your art evenly apart. Try using masking tape on the wall in-between your art as a guide.
For you over-achievers, use a wall hanging tool with a laser leveler and ruler. Place your most beloved artwork in high traffic areas where you will see it constantly. This will ensure that your heart and mind will frequently be drawn to what is most important to you.
“One of the greatest blessings we can offer to the world is the power of a Christ-centered home where the gospel is taught, covenants are kept, and love abounds.” -Elder Richard G. Scott, For Peace at Home.
6. Color Scheme: Choose colors from your main piece for the color scheme of the room. Pick one main color and two accents. For example, if your main color is light blue and you’re decorating your family room, use light blue pillows, a rug with accents of light blue, and light blue curtains. If your accent colors are gray and dark blue, have a dark blue blanket draped on the sofa, gray lamps and art with gray frames. Don’t be afraid to use a neutral color for your main color. Neutrals, especially white, are very in style right now and can give a home a light and airy feeling.
7. Lighting: Lighting is so important. Nothing looks good in the dark- because you can’t see it properly! Do your LDS gospel art a favor and light it properly to show off its features and beautiful details. The right lighting can take a space from a 7 to a 10. To light your home decor well, use natural window light or LED picture lights in the evening. Natural lighting is always preferable, but after the sun sets, some kind of additional lighting will continue to highlight your feature artwork long into the evening.
8. Organic Elements: Add a floating shelf above or below your main piece and add natural elements like greenery, vines, and flowers to complete the look. Use natural elements that draw your eye from one part to the next to keep your eye engaged and flowing. Alternatively, place your main piece on a large piece of furniture and add organic decorative elements to surround it.
"Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God" (D&C 88:119).
9. Big, Medium, Small: Something I learned from my art school days was using multiple items in design that are big, medium, and small. Whenever I’m decorating a space, I always choose one big item, usually my main focal piece; then one or two medium items, such as candles or milk glass vases filled with organic elements; then a few small items, such as pinecones and mini-pumpkins for fall. Try incorporating various decor items with different shapes and textures for added visual interest, such a burlap table runner or a figurine.
10. Simplify: Sometimes, less is more. Don’t over crowd things, let the natural beauty of your main piece shine through and speak for itself. Draw your eye to your focal piece with a few small decorations but also keep it simple. You don’t want to overcrowd your main piece so much that you barely notice that it’s there. The beauty of decorating with LDS gospel art is that you can always change it, move it from room to room, and add to it. I personally love to rearrange my home decor and furniture to give my home a fresh and exciting feel, about every six months. Rearranging parts of your home can make everything feel new and alive again!
"The most important of the Lord's work you will ever do will be within the walls of your own homes." -President Harold B. Lee
11. Take your time: Start small and go slow. When you’re unsure about where to start, take your time! Keep your eye out over weeks or even months. Look for LDS gospel art that catches your eye and decor items that really evoke emotion from you and your family members. Add one element at a time and you will be glad to have waited until you found something you loved, instead of trying to fill a space as quickly as you could without it being meaningful to you. Choose items that inspire, uplift, and remind you of a joyful experience you once had.
12. Family Unity: Invite the kids get involved. Let them add something that they love and help them to feel included in the process. It will create family unity and a home that is uniquely yours. After all, home is a sacred place and it’s all about our families and the special times we share with them. I’ve had my children gather pinecones from our back yard to add to an over-sized vase for the fireplace and they loved helping. They were proud of their work and felt appreciated when I displayed in it in our family room.
Another great way for kids to get involved with LDS gospel art is to print Latter-Day Saint coloring pages from our website for them to color. Consider it as an activity for family home evening and display the coloring pages in their bedrooms, a play room, or a hallway for adding a sweet and personal touch to your home.
"Doing all we can to invite the gentle, guiding influence of the Holy Ghost into our lives is critical in our attempts to center our home on the Savior." -Elder Richard G. Scott
13. Get inspired! Pinterest is a great resource to use when you’re trying to find ideas, and there are thousands of LDS gospel art decorating ideas to be found with a simple search. You might also try shopping antique stores for one of a kind trinkets that have long been forgotten. Antiques add a vintage and unique feel to a home that is new or is that is needing a pop of character. Don’t limit yourself to only wall decor, also consider displaying our laser-engraved cutting boards and ceramic mugs in your kitchen.
“Imagine that you are opening your front door and walking inside your home. What do you see, and how do you feel? Is it a place of love, peace, and refuge from the world, as is the temple? Is it clean and orderly? As you walk through the rooms of your home, do you see uplifting images which include appropriate pictures of the temple and the Savior? Is your bedroom or sleeping area a place for personal prayer? Is your gathering area or kitchen a place where food is prepared and enjoyed together, allowing uplifting conversation and family time? Are scriptures found in a room where the family can study, pray, and learn together?
Can you find your personal gospel study space? Does the music you hear or the entertainment you see, online or otherwise, offend the Spirit? Is the conversation uplifting and without contention? That concludes our tour. Perhaps you, as I, found a few spots that need some “home improvement”—hopefully not an “extreme home makeover.” -Elder Gary E. Stevenson, Sacred Homes, Sacred Temples.
By incorporating these LDS gospel art tips and embracing the counsel included from leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, your home will be a beautiful and uplifting haven. It will be a place where the spirit of the Lord can abide with you and your family to bring you and your family closer to the Savior, Jesus Christ.