Portraits of Random People Paint a Pretty Picture

Portraits in Kate Spade's home gallery | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Alec Kugler via Coveteur

As we were gathering ideas for gallery walls, we started noticing a strange trend. Paintings of random people seem to be taking vintage decor by storm! Add a few friendly portraits to your home and consider them welcome guests. You can create a custom family of invisible friends who will watch over your house while you’re away on vacation. That’s not spooky at all!

Gallery wall of random portraits | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Pernilla Hed via Sköna Hem

Bedroom Portraits

Pay attention to the overall impression you get from a portrait. Paintings of people in bed or in the act of lounging are wonderful additions to bedrooms. They should convey a sense of rest and will help set the mood for what should be a calming atmosphere. Find pictures of people that match your color scheme and notice how they make you feel. The subject should feel like a welcome guest in the room at all times.

Vintage portraits perfect for the bedroom | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: SF Girl by Bay

2nd Moms

Another idea is to add a painting of someone who could be a surrogate parent. Hang portraits of dignified people who will work to inspire you towards success. It’s fun to use your imagination about who these people are to you. You can make up a whole relationship history and motivate yourself with the story. Our brains work in interesting ways to achieve our goals, so might as well trick them as much as possible! Thanks fake family member, you are always so supportive.

Inspirational portraits for the living room | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Morgan Levy via MyDomaine
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Portraits of strangers liven up a hutch | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Michelle Gage via Domino

Strange Men

Dress up a guest bedroom or entry way with a few guys that you have on hand. Rough charcoal portraits of men that have interesting expressions provoke thought. You might find yourself passing by these paintings wondering, “What are they thinking?” Women especially like to analyze people and it’s fun to have art work in your home that engages curiosity. The images should always give you a sense of wonder and never creep you out (unless you find that funny). Sick humor!

Charcoal portraits of random men on mid-century dresser | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Enter My Attic

Dignified Children

Speaking of which, use a sense of humor when you decide where to hang your portraits. Children can watch over commonly used items in entryways, or work as astute hall monitors. Threaten your kids that they are being watched! Give each character a personality and include them in your home life. It keeps things fun and is a way to extend the ole’ “eyes-in-the-back-of-the-head” routine.

Portraits of dignified children for hallways and entryways | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Alec Kugler via Coveteur
Portraits of children and lively wallpaper | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Carly Page Photography


If you’ve got a bar at home, add some painted people to the mix! Choose portraits of friendly people who can serve as bartenders or patrons. If you want to add a vacation effect to your bar area, select a few foreigners to liven up the scene. This is a great spot for bright colors or cheery people. Only good vibes in this location!

Portraits of strangers liven up a bar area | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Domino


Feel like no one understands what you’re going through? Find portraits of confidants that you can hang by vanities or in closets. Speak in hushed tones and rest assured your secrets are safe with your painted friends. You should never feel alone and friends like these can always be bought. Do you need one good friend? Or a girl gang that will rally when called upon?

Vintage portraits for closets and secret spaces | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Architectural Digest France

Beautiful Mind

Your home should always have a touch of whimsy and your decor should never take itself too seriously. Hanging portraits of random people and giving them personality is so fun! Check out Etsy for hand-painted beauties that you can call your own. There are so many eccentric and beautiful faces to choose from! Remember, you can’t choose your family, but you can always pick your art friends.

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