When it comes to creating a wedding registry, including that Kitchenaid stand mixer and Dyson vacuum is a no brainer, but your wish list doesn’t have to be limited to snoozy appliances and fine china. While alternative wedding registries like honeymoon funds and experience-based gifts are gaining popularity, we have another idea for you to consider: taking this opportunity to build your art collection. After all, if you plan on buying a new home with your future spouse, you’re going to have a lot of blank walls to fill.
Another compelling reason: Online resources for affordable, limited-edition and one-of-a-kind art have never been more plentiful. “Registering for art is a fantastic idea, as it’s often overlooked on registries yet plays an integral role in decorating a home,” says creative consultant and interiors stylist Michelle Adams, whose work includes curating collections for online art retailer Artfully Walls. Below, Adams shares three tips to get you started.
Go with your gut.
“Look for pieces that speak to you, rather than trying to decide what type of art is ‘right’ for a specific room,” suggests Adams.
Search by keywords.
“Not all prints are created equally!” she declares. “If you’re on the hunt for a quality piece, look for standards such as ‘museum quality printing,’ ‘archival inks’ and ‘premium paper.’”
Do a test run.
“If you’re afraid to hang a piece for fear of putting a hole in the wall, only to end up moving the art later, try hanging it with 3-M velcro strips first,” suggests Adams. “They’re easy to remove and will allow you to visualize a piece—or an entire gallery wall—before you commit.”
Ready to start registering? Check out our top online art resources in the slideshow above.
This two-year-old site stocks an extensive range of prints and photography with an emphasis on helping shoppers craft the perfect gallery wall. You can choose from recommended groupings or shop à la carte. And, a handy on-site tool lets you play with scale and see how pieces will look in your own home.
Artfully Walls Study in Saturation and Scale Gallery Wall, $565; at Artfully Walls
Photo: Artfully Walls
Minted x West Elm
When these brands asked artists from around the globe to submit work for their Art Challenge, more than 1,500 entered. The resulting collection of 161 framed pieces is the best of the best, and they start at just $59.
Minted for West Elm "Wake I" Framed Print, $129-$269; at West Elm
Photo: West Elm
Photo: Buddy Editions
Founder Jen Bekman is the one we have to thank for starting this whole affordable-art-online craze. Her game-changing site, which launched in 2007, and "art for everyone" philosophy has made big names out of up-and-coming artists and continues to do so today.
Christian Chaize "Praia Piquinia 14/08/1" Photograph, starting at $60; at 20x200
Photo: Christian Chaize
Serena & Lily
This home decor brand is known for its preppy-cool, coastal-inspired furniture and decor, but it also boasts an expertly-curated selection of original art. Be sure to check in monthly for new introductions.
Jenny Prinn "Feeling Fauvist" Painting, $600; at Serena & Lily
Photo: Serena & Lily
Permanent Press Editions
After years of collaborating in the publish and design industries, Shana Faust and Alexa Mulvihill joined forces in 2014 to found Permanent Press Editions. The Brooklyn-based brand focuses on creating original photography that's introduced as collections. Edition 2, which makes its debut this month, is titled "Pressed Flowers" and includes a group of striking black-and-white floral portraits.
Permanent Press Editions "Plaza Street East" Photography, starting at $60; at Permanent Press Editions
Photo: Permanent Press Editions