How to hang a painting

How high to hang pictures? Should they be at eye level? Does that mean my eye level or the eye level of the average person? What if I have very high ceilings? What about those gallery walls everyone is posting Pinterest pictures of? It’s a lot to think about, right? Sometimes it seems as if there are as many answers to this question as there are different kinds of houses. This quick cheat sheet is designed to help you make this decision based on your own interior, and find the perfect height to hang pictures in your home.

Should I hang this picture at eye level?

At first glance, eye level may seem like a good idea. However, “eye level” means something different for each individual. Especially if you’re very tall or short, hanging at your eye level can be problematic. Instead of hanging pictures at your subjective eye level, follow the hanging guidelines in this article evenly throughout your interior. That way your paintings will look good, no matter whose eyes are beholding.

How high to hang pictures in a hallway or entryway?

As a rule of thumb, it’s best to hang your picture at least 60 inches from the ground in places where they will be viewed from a standing position, such as in a hallway. For smaller pictures, you can hang them a little higher, about 65 inches. This height is the most comfortable for people of all sizes.

If you’re putting in a gallery wall that will be viewed from a standing position, the bottom edge of it should be at least 60 inches from the floor. The gallery wall can go up as high as you want but make sure you leave a gap of at least one foot between the highest point of the gallery wall and the ceiling.

How do I hang pictures above a sofa?

Whether it’s one large work of art or a grouping of several, there are a couple of rules to hanging pictures over a sofa.

The first is that you should hang any pictures at least 8 inches from the back of the sofa. The second is that width of the work, or works of art, should take up about 2/3 the width of the sofa. If you have a small interior, use a mix of small and medium sized pictures to fill up that space. If you have a lot of wall space to fill or a large sofa, go for bigger pictures.

These rules also work if you are hanging pictures above a console or hallway table.

How do I hang pictures along staircases?

Staircases are good places to put gallery walls. Groupings of smaller pictures should go along the staircase diagonally, at least 60 inches from the bottom of each stair. Because of the height differences between stairs, this is not the place for large pictures. Leave those for spaces with even elevation.

Also, just as in other spaces, you don’t want to hang all the way up to the ceiling. Leave a gap of at least one foot from the top of the picture and the ceiling. It’s okay if it’s not perfectly measured out. You have some wiggle room here to arrange the pictures in the way that looks best.

What about in rooms with high ceilings?

Unless you live at Downton Abbey, your pictures should not be hung floor to ceiling or “salon style.” This preferred picture hanging style of the old European aristocracy just doesn’t look good in modern interiors. Even the oldest museums don’t hang this way anymore!

If you don’t want your high-ceilinged living room to look like Hogwarts, leave the top third to a half of your wall space free. How much space you leave depends on how high your ceilings are. If you have a two story high great room or entry foyer, keep pictures in the bottom half. If your have high ceilings don’t reach two stories, hang in the bottom two thirds.

Also, when you have a lot of wall space, it’s better to hang up one large picture instead of many small ones.

The right height for wall art above a fireplace?

The best thing to hang above a fireplace is a mirror. Why? Because the heat and dryness of the fire will slowly damage any work of art you put above it. But hanging a work of art is fine if you don’t light the fire that often or if the fire isn’t real (and therefore, doesn’t get too hot). That said, the rules for hanging mirrors in your home are the same as for hanging pictures.

Hang the mirror at least eight inches from the mantelpiece. The mirror (and it should be only one large mirror) should measure about 2/3 of the width of the mantelpiece.

Art is a crucial ingredient to making your house feel like a home. Using the tricks in this cheat sheet, you will be able to hang your favorite pictures in a balanced way that compliments the rest of your interior. These simple tricks also work in any room. So whether you’re hanging pictures of the kids in the den or framing up some seashells in your coastal bathroom, your pictures will always look perfect!

How to hang a painting

Wire and D-rings are the best hardware for hanging a picture because they’re not only strong, they’re easy to install and adjust. There are three types of picture wire. Choosing the right kind depends on how big your picture is.

  • Braided: As the name implies, this is made from strands of galvanized steel that have been braided together. Braided wire is easy to cut and tie. It is sold in a variety of thicknesses. The thicker the wire, the heavier the picture it can support—up to a maximum of 36 pounds.
  • Stainless steel: Made from strands of steel that have been twisted together under tension, this picture wire is stronger than braided wire but less flexible. It’s best for hanging very large, heavy frames up to 100 pounds.
  • Vinyl-coated: This is stainless steel picture wire with a soft outer layer of vinyl applied. It’s gentler on hands and delicate hanging surfaces, but almost as strong as stainless. It can hang pictures up to 60 pounds.

D-rings look a little like a belt buckle attached to a strip of metal with screw holes. They’re designed to be mounted flush against the back of the picture frame. The rings themselves face inward to connect the length of picture wire. Like picture wire, D-rings are available in a variety of sizes; the heavier your artwork, the larger the rings.

How to hang a painting

The Spruce / Letícia Almeida

If you’re not sure how high to hang art on your walls, you’re not alone. These tips offer helpful ideas and designer secrets for getting the best look when hanging artwork.

Hanging a Picture at Eye Level

You may have heard that you should hang artwork so the center of the picture is at eye level. This tip sounds easy enough until you consider that eye level for you may not be eye level for other people in your household. It also doesn’t take into consideration gallery walls, pieces of art hung above furniture, or frames in especially large or small sizes. The advice to hang pictures at eye level for the average person, or between 60 and 65 inches from the floor, is a good guideline, but by no means is it a hard-and-fast rule.

Consider How Art Relates to Everything Around It

A better approach is to weigh a few different factors to determine the proper height to hang pictures. Think of the artwork you’re hanging and its relationship to its surroundings. Whether you hang a framed picture over a sofa, on a stairway wall, or in the entryway, each of these spaces has unique elements to consider.

Here are more tips on hanging art in your home:

Hallways and entryways: Will you mostly be standing in the room? If so, it may make sense to hang artwork a bit higher than the 60–65-inch center starting point–especially if the ceiling is tall.

Rooms with seats: In a room where you generally sit down (a dining room, family room, or office), hang pictures a bit lower, so they can be enjoyed at a lower viewing angle. Sit in a chair and have someone hold the picture against the wall, moving it up and down so you can evaluate the look.

Consider size: A large framed piece over a sofa or sideboard relates more easily when hung so the bottom of the frame is positioned six-to-12 inches above the top of the sofa back or tabletop. This won’t work, however, if your artwork is very small. In that case, consider hanging the piece in a group of other objects such as plates, mirrors, or decorative items.

Gallery walls: When working with a grouping of pictures or objects hung on a wall, think of the grouping as one large picture and relate the bottom of the entire grouping to the furniture underneath it.

Vertical art: Does the center rule apply if you are hanging a tall vertical picture, panel, or poster? In this case, it may be better to think about placing the art so the top third of the picture is near eye level. However, the actual height of the piece will determine the best position on the wall. Again, have someone hold it lower and higher so you can see what looks best.

Small pictures: What about hanging small pictures? A small picture hung on a large wall can look out of balance. Look for narrow walls (such as the spaces between two doorways or windows) and consider hanging two or three small pictures in a vertical line. In this case, treat the center picture as the center of the grouping.

Use templates: If you’re hanging artwork by yourself, cut paper templates to size for each piece of art and attach the paper cutouts to the wall with painter’s tape. This will give you the option to stand back and see how the artwork’s size relates to your room and your furniture. Move the template up and down to find the perfect spot prior to hanging the picture.

Rather than only going by the eye level rule, always view artwork in relation to a room’s furnishings. Take the time to try out various heights and locations before you punch holes in the wall for picture hooks.

Introduction: How to Hang a Multi-panel Wall Art the Easy Way

Multipanel wall art is making noise in the world of home designing. Gone are the days when people used to hang single panel canvas on a large wall and it still looks kind of off. With multipanel wall decor, you can fill up large spaces with a dramatic effect. For sure it will leave a unique impression to your home.

There are many ways you can design your home with multipanel wall art. You can also check out some before and after projects so you can see amazing changes that multipanel wall canvas does to your place.

Given that you have bought your first ever multipanel wall art, here are the steps on how to hang them the easy way.

Step 1: Prepare the Materials

First, you have to prepare the materials that you are going to use. In this case, you’re going to be needing a Tape Measure, 3M Double Sided Tape, Building Level, and Pencil. These stuff are mostly available in your house. If not, then you can buy them at the nearest store.

In buying double-sided tape, make sure that it is thick enough to hold the wall art when you hang it on the wall.

Step 2: Measure the Middle Piece

After gathering all the materials, you may now measure the middle piece print size. This will allow you to hang your wall art at the right place on the wall. Record the measurement and use it as a guide later as we proceed.

Proper measurement is very crucial. Make sure that you get the right number so it will be easy for you to hang the wall art later on.

Step 3: Tape Canvas Art

Stick the double-sided tape at the back of the canvas. Remember to put the tapes on every corner of the wall art to make sure that it will stick well on the wall. This is an important method in which you will be using an adhesive tape to hang your wall decor. There’s no need for you to put screws or nails on the wall.

In this way, you will not cause any damage to your wall. You can actually hang a canvas art using these tapes.

Step 4: Draw a Line on the Wall Where You Want to Put the Middle Piece Canvas

Building level can indicate the surface of your wall horizontally or vertically. It also checks the elevation of your work and is best in setting and measuring levels.

Using a pencil, draw a line where you want to put the middle piece of your multipanel canvas. Make sure to draw a line on the sides too.

Step 5: Hang the Panels

Now that you have finished drawing on your wall, it’s time to hang your multipanel canvas. Start by hanging the middle piece where you have drawn the line. Press the canvas print hard on to make it stick on the wall.

Step 6: Mark the Bottom of the Next Piece

The next step is to measure the bottom of the next canvas piece four inches below the middle canvas. This will serve as a guide to the next pieces that you are about to hang.

Measure each side and repeat the process until all of the multipanel canvas are hanging on the wall. But before that, make sure to prepare your wall before hanging canvas art.

For the video instruction, you may watch How to Hang 5 Panel Canvas.

Be the First to Share

Did you make this project? Share it with us!

This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in October 2015.

Hanging art and decorations can be challenging and damaging, but there’s a trick! Before you break up your brick or mess up your masonry with wall anchors, there are a few amazing products you MUST know about.

How to hang a painting

First, a few things:

  • I tested two different products, one is the Brick Clip® Fastener (above, front) and the other is a block clip from The Hillman Group (above, in the background). (You can buy them both on Amazon – Brick Clip® and Block Clip)
  • These are definitely marketed as products to be used with brick for good reason – bricks are manufactured for consistency, and the products are designed to fit common brick sizes. I have stacked flagstone in my own home, so my true curiosity in testing these products was in whether I could make use of them too. Spoiler alert, one works, the other doesn’t, but they are both GREAT on traditional brick.
  • Bricks can vary in height, so the Brick Clip® Fastener is available in 3 sizes to accommodate this variance (learn more about types of brick here). Flagstone walls are a different story – at the narrowest points, my stones are all roughy 1″ tall with a 1″ mortar gap. If you’re reviewing this product for your own stonework, keep in mind that the natural materials are subject to greater variance.

I found that the product by The Hillman Group was a better fit on my flagstone walls. With this design, the clip creates tension between the bottom of the top stone and the top edge of the lower stone. The tabs at the top are rigid, but still thin enough to be bendable, so I adjusted the angles to fill the wider space between the flagstones.

How to hang a painting

The teeth clamp against the top of the stone, and the tabs act as a spring holding the accessory in place. The product itself is very narrow, allowing your decor to rest flush against the wall. The clips hold 25-50 pounds, which makes it useful for most artwork and decor you want to display (even large scale art and wall hangings ).

How to hang a painting

I don’t have brick on my home, but I know plenty of people who do. I bought the other product, the Brick Clip® Fastener to see if any of its sizes would attach to my stone. To attach correctly, I would have needed a very large clip, one in the 3-4″ range, to attach around the height of two horizontal flagstones and the mortar mashed between them.

While it wasn’t perfect for my stone, they did work wonderfully on classic brick, even in instances when the mortar was nearly flush with the brick surface:

How to hang a painting

Damaging your stone, brick, or mortar for the sake of decorating is irreversible, but I’ve been really impressed with how these products can help you hang decorations both indoors and out.

We asked artists for their creative methods that won’t ruin your walls.

If you’re starting to build a collection of art, chances are you want to display your investments proudly. Otherwise, maybe you simply want to show off your favorite family photos. Whether photos or paintings, wall hangings have the profound ability to pull a space together in an instant. But what if you rent your place and have to keep the drywall intact or have intricate millwork that you don’t want to mar with nail holes? You aren’t relegated to a world with drab white walls. There are plenty of ways to hang artwork without making a single hole in the wall.

The most common way to hang artwork without nails is by using Command Strips ($12.17 for 14, amazon.com). You simply plan how you want to arrange your picture, then apply one half of the hook and latch strip to the wall and the other to the frame. Then, you stick them together to secure the picture or painting to the wall. When you go to remove them, they don’t cause any damage to paint or drywall.

To go beyond this common hack for hanging artwork, we asked the pros—artists, DIY experts, and interior designers—for other creative solutions. Here’s what they had to say.

Magnetic Paint

To design a gallery wall that can be rearranged on a whim, use Rust-Oleum Magnetic Paint ($21.58, amazon.com) and adhesive-backed magnets to the back of lightweight prints or photo frames, says Audrey Van de Castle, manager of Stanley Black & Decker’s Maker Initiatives. You can even try painting the magnetic paint in fun accent shapes around the artwork.

Display Easel

Try showing off larger paintings on a display easel, says artist Corey Paige. “No matter what the piece you’re displaying is, it automatically adds a unique touch to your space,” she explains. “You don’t typically expect to walk into someone’s home and see art displayed on an easel—it’s always a conversation starter, since it highlights the art.”

String and Clothespins

Another option? Use tape or mounting putty ($1.89, target.com) to string a piece of twine across your wall, then use decorative clips or clothespins to display prints along the line, says Van de Castle.

Suspended from the Ceiling

If you have tricky wainscot or tiled walls, drive hooks into the ceiling instead, says Lindsay Pumpa, owner of L Pumpa Designs. Then, you can use rope, leather, or chains to suspend the framed artwork.

Wire Grid

If you’re looking to occupy more vertical space, a wire grid ($45, crateandbarrel.com) is another method that’s perfect for your desk area, says Paige. Simply use clothespins to attach your favorite prints or photos.

Ladder Shelves

Framed prints look great displayed on a ladder shelf, since leaning art is a great way to add dimension to a room, says Paige. Simply frame your artwork and prop it on the shelf. If your ladder shelf leans against a wall, you can display a larger framed print on the top shelf.

Room Divider

Another fun way to arrange small works of art into a sort of gallery wall? On a folding screen or room divider, says Pumpa. This serves as an excellent way to divide a studio apartment into multiple “rooms,” while also creating a cool focal point.

You’re only a few steps away from a gorgeous DIY wall gallery. Whether you’re using frames, paintings, or photos, these hanging gallery wall ideas are guaranteed to spruce up your space.

Hanging a gallery wall is the perfect way to show off a unique wall-hanging art collection. But finding the perfect layout for a gallery wall can seem like a daunting task. There are so many elements to consider before hanging art on the wall. With these easy five steps, hanging your own gallery is simple, not stressful.

How to Hang a Gallery Wall

Follow our step-by-step instructions for choosing, arranging, and mounting your gallery wall.

What You Need

  • Artwork
  • Pencil
  • Kraft paper
  • Scissors or a crafts knife
  • Painters tape
  • Hammer
  • Nails or picture hangers
  • Ruler or measuring tape
  • Level
  • Double-sided adhesive tape, such as Command strips, or adhesive hook-and-loop tape, such as Velcro

Step 1: Gather Art

Start by gathering an assortment of wall art. Choose items that go together but aren’t matchy-matchy. Build a photo wall with a bunch of family pictures, or opt for frames sans photos to create a wall frame collage—it’s up to you. For displaying small photos or pieces of art, look for wall collage frames that hold multiple pieces in one unit. A wall photo collage means hanging fewer frames and does some of the art arranging for you.

Step 2: Trace and Test

The hardest part of hanging a gallery wall is establishing where to hang pictures on the wall. Before nailing any holes, establish your gallery wall layout. Start by tracing around each piece of art on kraft paper, then cut out. On each piece of paper, mark the picture’s hanger placement. This will come in handy when hanging your art at the correct height. Use painters tape to hang each cutout on your wall and get a feel for the layout.

When deciding on your gallery wall layout, start by hanging the largest item at eye-level. You’ll want artwork to hang 57″ from the ground at center. However, the height at which you hang art will also depend on your the height of your ceilings and your furniture. If you have soaring ceilings, opt for large-scale art that scales more of your wall. If you are hanging a gallery wall above a sofa or tall furniture piece, you’ll need to adjust the height accordingly. Floor-to-ceiling gallery walls can also make an impressive statement. Once you’ve decided on where and what height to hang your art, rearrange the cutouts of your pictures until you find a layout you love.

This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in October 2015.

Hanging art and decorations can be challenging and damaging, but there’s a trick! Before you break up your brick or mess up your masonry with wall anchors, there are a few amazing products you MUST know about.

How to hang a painting

First, a few things:

  • I tested two different products, one is the Brick Clip® Fastener (above, front) and the other is a block clip from The Hillman Group (above, in the background). (You can buy them both on Amazon – Brick Clip® and Block Clip)
  • These are definitely marketed as products to be used with brick for good reason – bricks are manufactured for consistency, and the products are designed to fit common brick sizes. I have stacked flagstone in my own home, so my true curiosity in testing these products was in whether I could make use of them too. Spoiler alert, one works, the other doesn’t, but they are both GREAT on traditional brick.
  • Bricks can vary in height, so the Brick Clip® Fastener is available in 3 sizes to accommodate this variance (learn more about types of brick here). Flagstone walls are a different story – at the narrowest points, my stones are all roughy 1″ tall with a 1″ mortar gap. If you’re reviewing this product for your own stonework, keep in mind that the natural materials are subject to greater variance.

I found that the product by The Hillman Group was a better fit on my flagstone walls. With this design, the clip creates tension between the bottom of the top stone and the top edge of the lower stone. The tabs at the top are rigid, but still thin enough to be bendable, so I adjusted the angles to fill the wider space between the flagstones.

How to hang a painting

The teeth clamp against the top of the stone, and the tabs act as a spring holding the accessory in place. The product itself is very narrow, allowing your decor to rest flush against the wall. The clips hold 25-50 pounds, which makes it useful for most artwork and decor you want to display (even large scale art and wall hangings ).

How to hang a painting

I don’t have brick on my home, but I know plenty of people who do. I bought the other product, the Brick Clip® Fastener to see if any of its sizes would attach to my stone. To attach correctly, I would have needed a very large clip, one in the 3-4″ range, to attach around the height of two horizontal flagstones and the mortar mashed between them.

While it wasn’t perfect for my stone, they did work wonderfully on classic brick, even in instances when the mortar was nearly flush with the brick surface:

How to hang a painting

Damaging your stone, brick, or mortar for the sake of decorating is irreversible, but I’ve been really impressed with how these products can help you hang decorations both indoors and out.