The best ideas are when you take two older ideas that have nothing to do with each other, make them have sex with each other, and then build a business around the bastard, ugly child that results.
- James Altucher in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Mediocre Entrepenuers
What to do when two persistent but unrelated ideas bounce around in my head for months on end?
Yep, I take Mr. Altucher's advice on matchmaking.
Those notions are introduced to one another, and left alone to make a baby. And almost always, I am shocked to see how things turn out.
* * * * *
For about six months now, I've been meaning to display some up-to-date photos of my daughters.
Gone are the days when visitors to my home would be treated to all four of them at the front door, tumbling over one another in their excitement to see who might be ringing our bell. Now I often find myself recapping the whereabouts of my brood to houseguests, and often wish for a nearby set of photos to provide reference to who's who and prove that they are all still alive and kicking.
Raiding the girls' Instagrams for current photos was a breeze, but I've been struggling to decide where to hang this little rouges' gallery.
As I considered my options, I ran headlong into one of the major annoyances of my front hall. There's a big ol' thermostat plopped right in the middle of one of the most visible walls, creating a sight is just plain ugly..
For twenty some odd years, this eyesore has been vexing my vision of a welcoming front hall, and I just can't figure out how to make it fade into the background.
And then the solution hit me.
Rather than trying to hide the thermostat, I decided to simply hang photos around it, thereby camouflaging its utilitarian homeliness in plain sight.
Gallery wall, meet my thermostat.
And thermostat, say hello to my gallery wall.
Please make me a beautiful baby.
^ Here's the view from just inside the front door. Ta daaa!
^ Brazenly, the thermostat has been located smack dab in the middle of the arrangement. This may sound like a counter-intuitive way to deal with ugly, but it seems to fade into the composition of white frames, and I don't notice it so much anymore.
^ The focal point of the arrangement is intended to be my daughters' photos, but some simple, supporting-character pieces of art were needed to round out the grouping. I opted for quiet, gold-on-white pieces that reinforce the story of my girls. This four-by-four grid of dots reflects the offspring head count as well as my obsession with perfect squares.
I have no idea what the gold moose represents. I just found him lying around and thought he looked like he belonged.
^ A heart. Because love is always good.
^ A big numeral four and a scripty list of names - for the days when I forget - round out the collection.
^ And while I will be the first to admit that the grouping is simple and understated, I must confess that it's exactly what I was hoping for.
So thank you, gallery wall and thermostat, for making me this pretty little love child.
I'm glad you had sex in my front hall.