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How to hang artwork

You have some wonderful art but you aren’t quite sure how to hang it? This is a common question with some simple answers.


Hanging artwork at the right height is a skill so why not turn to the experts, the art galleries.

Before you start keep in mind that it’s important to hang artwork so it relates to the people in the house not the scale of the room. By that we mean, if you have high ceilings don’t hang the art high, hang it according to the human eye.

So what is that height? As the average human eye level is 145cm off the floor use this as a guide for the centre of your picture. You can go up to 152cm.


For the space between pictures, Interior Stylist Prue Lovejoy always allows maximum 10cm between large pictures, and 5cm between smaller pictures such as family photos.


With the above in mind it’s always a good idea to cut out templates using newspaper for example the same size as each piece of artwork. Then using Blu-tack or something similar hang the templates on the wall to gauge where each piece might go and how it relates the furniture, windows and doorways around it.

If you have a lot of smaller pictures you want to display lay them out on the floor. Start with the largest then lay the others ones around it until you are happy with the grouping.  Take a photo and then try another layout.  Use the photos to decide until you are happy with the layout.


Art doesn’t always have to be hung. You could always lean a piece of art on the wall be it on the floor, on a console, a chair or even in a bookcase.  Don’t be hemmed in by ‘art must be hung’, that said, do make sure the piece is safe from being bumped, knocked and pawed by small hands or paws.


There are some easy mistakes to avoid:

The top of the picture lines up with the door frame. Never hang pictures so they line up with the top of the door frame, this doesn’t allow the eye variation when viewing a room and therefore interest in your room.

Scale is so important. Don’t hang small pictures over large pieces of furniture. If you have lots of small pictures of a similar topic, frame or look, group them together to be viewed as one large image. Note our tip on ‘The Right Planning’ though.

The picture does not relate to the rest of the room. For example, a piece of pop art in a Hamptons inspired living room will look completely out of place if there are no other quirky pieces to relate it to the items around it.  Think how your art relates to the items surrounding it.

The same could be said of a large picture over a small piece of furniture although this one is harder to gauge and really depends on the artwork and the item and what else you have around it such as a chair or lamp.

Artwork hung too high. Never hang artwork too high, be it floating miles above a bed or a sofa or just awkwardly above eye level on a wall. Tall men are very prone to doing this.

The pictures are all the same throughout your house. Variety is the spice of life and this applies to your artwork too. Mix framed art with canvases and objects that can be hung such as tapestries, African head dresses, photos, prints and paintings for example.

A need to fill every space. If you have too much art on your walls the eye never gets a break. Having space around a picture allows the picture to stand out and be enjoyed on its own.  There are very few houses that can get away with the overcrowded art look.


Now you have some guidelines, it’s time to start hanging your artwork and enjoying your art.


Image found on Momtastic.

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