How to Decorate with Sentimental Items

If you know me well, you know I don’t have many personal photos hanging in my home. I prefer to fill up empty wall space with art – I just like the way it looks! It sounds really Debbie Downer-ish (I know). BUT since I don’t have photos of loved ones throughout the house, I’ve found a few easy and fun ways to incorporate sentimental and personal items into our decor.

Framed Recipe Cards

Something about old handwritten family recipes makes my heart go pitter-patter and reminds me of simpler times. Like the times when people used to actually write out all their recipes on index cards and keep them in a cute little box. Can you even imagine doing that now?! Find some of those old family recipes – the more worn-looking and spilled on, the better! – and put them in a floating frame (we used this one, but we also love this one.) Such an easy way to add a personal touch to your home and fill up blank wall space in your kitchen!

Side note: Brad and I couldn’t quit laughing at the differences in our family recipes. My family: doughnuts and cookies, his family: chicken and vegetables. If you know me, are you even surprised?! Ha!

Framed Map

One of the photos on our art ledge is a map of where Brad and I met. It was a gross, dirty college party house but zooming the map out and putting it in this frame has a way of making it look a bit more *elevated*, no? I think this could look so cool blown up in a huge frame – I have visions of a big, beautiful Ames map in our future basement one day.

To print my map in black and white, I found this black and white map style, zoomed to my area, screenshotted it, converted everything to black and white (including the icons), and printed. (There are probably much easier ways to do this…)

Vacation Gallery Wall

At first glance, it’s a black and white grid-style gallery wall of different landscapes. But to Brad and I, it’s a trip down memory lane. Each photo is from a vacation or weekend trip we’ve taken together. It’s a sweet reminder of all the places we’ve been, PLUS it was a great way to fill up the blank wall in our bedroom. This could be really fun in bright colors, too! 

Frames

Display Unique Sentimental Pieces

My grandma was a super talented painter and I somehow was lucky enough to end up with one of her big ornate frames. Her detailed portrait paintings put my polka dot, uh, “paintings” to shame. But it’s one of my favorite pieces in our home and I just love that there’s a story behind it. If you’re lucky enough to have any one-of-a-kind sentimental pieces, display them proudly! Always a conversation starter!

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