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How To Hang Art On Your Walls


how to frame pictures

how to hang pictures on your wallsThis is an article to help you learn how to hang art on your walls so that you can make your home look great!  Using just a couple of suggestions from this article can make all the difference in the looks of your home and the art you have hung up.

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how to hang art on your walls

There are many ways and hangers you can use to hang up your art, pictures and framed photo's. Each picture you have will use it's own style of hanger. For example, if your picture has a wire along the back you would use hangers on your wall that are specifically made for grabbing these wires. If you have a strap hanger on your picture you would use a nail with a head or other type of hanger.

We have many types of hangers on this web site and on the bottom of most pages where these hangers are sold are usually directions on how to use the various kinds of picture hangers. That is where you need to turn if you need instructions on how to use a specific hanger. For example, our security hanger page has instructions on the bottom of the page as to their use.

The grist of this article is how to attractively display your artwork in your home, store, gallery, restaurant, home, or office. What are the secrets of picture hanging? The first is location, location, location. Your art will not look it's best unless the art is hung in the proper place. You don't want to hang your art in an out of the way corner, or have lots of furniture or items in the front of it. You need to make your beautiful framed pictures stand out so that they look the very best they can look.

Lets face it, there is much art hung up with just no thought of why or where it was hung, other than the fact the the owner could look at the picture once in a while. In my case I have a couple of unframed photos of my deceased parents taped to my computer. This is fine, but when you are decorating your home, you want your photos and art to look great when hanging on your wall! There are ways of doing this!

First off you should study the location of where you desire to hang your art. How much room is there? What kind of lighting exists? Should I hang up a few nice pictures or one big one? And of course, what kind of picture am I going to put here? Is this a place to display art, or a place to display grandma and grandpa's pictures?

Whether you realize it or not, all these questions are going to be answered by your mind before you ever hang up the first picture. These questions are going to either be answered by you without you even thinking about it, or you may decide to put some time and effort into actually thinking about it for a while. When I hung up my Cuckoo clocks (that's art!) it took me several days to decide just where. In the case of my parents pictures on my computer, maybe ten seconds.

When locating art on your walls, there should be a minimum of six inches of clear wall space all around the art, a foot or more would be even better. I have seen art hung up in homes that was just completely packed in. One member of my family had over 50 small framed pictures of his family covering one wall of his living room.

If you only have a small space to display art, it is better to hang up fewer pieces than to crowd the art so close together that they almost touch. In the case of my family member above, it would have been much nicer if he had several nice large framed family pictures hung up on the wall, and all the rest of the photos put into photo albums.

how to hang up artI have seen art in stores with merchandise hung all around and even over it. How do they expect to sell art this way? People need to be able to stand back and view the art with as few visual distractions as possible.

The picture to your right shows pictures hung in a store in a semi informal style.  These pictures sold good. They were low enough so customers could see them well. No distractions and were well lighted. The also were well priced and well marked as to price. There was no haggling and they sold themselves easily.  It is all a matter of placement. 

When hanging your art or pictures, they need to be hung at the eye level of the average person. How many times have you gone into homes and seen art hung way up too high on the walls?  Or stores and seen art hung around the room almost touching the ceilings with all the other merchandise below it. Art hung this way will not sell and it is tough to go into a home and look at up at such high hung pictures. You need to hang art where people can see it. This means that the middle of the main picture should be just about five feet six inches above the floor with other pictures grouped around it. Many times pictures are hung too high for best viewing.

how to hang up pictures in a formal styleOn the right wall and in the right place, one large single picture looks great. Other times pictures hung in a group will look great. Then, there are two ways of grouping pictures, the formal style and the informal style. Usually the informal approach looks nicer to most people.

The picture to the right shows a group of pictures hung in a Formal style.

Grouping pictures is important. Unless you are a store or museum I would not recommend that you hang the art in a straight line across your wall. Pictures in homes look much better when hung in informal groups. You can get more pictures on a wall this way, and the appearance of the group as a whole adds to the charm of your pictures. When you have a really big room, such as museums have, the formal method really works fine. But most homes have only a limited space, and smaller walls to hang pictures on. In most homes the informal method really works the best.

how to hang up pictures in an informal styleWhen you hang art up as a grouping, the grouping style you use is almost as much artistic as the art itself. No one can tell you how to group your art but yourself. First off, you need to decide which pictures you want to use, and the sizes of those pictures and how many. Then you have to look at the space available, its size and shape.

The picture to your right shows pictures hung in an Informal style.

In informal grouping, it usually is best to have different size pictures, and as to the shape of a grouping, that depends on the shape you have available. For example you would use a different grouping shape on a plain flat wall as opposed to hanging pictures in a stair way. This is where your true artistic abilities to hang up art is yours and yours alone! You learn by doing and experimenting and having fun!

Keep in mind when pictures are hung informally on your walls and you decide to replace one picture with another it is a lot easier to replace it with another picture even if the size is slightly different, many times you don't even have to move a wall hanger. If you try to hang pictures in a straight line, you will be forever pounding hangers into your walls. Always use the proper hangers when hanging art, especially in sheetrock walls. If you use plain nails on wired pictures, sooner or later you are going to lose a picture to your floor. Real art hangers hold wired art very securely, nails do not.

Proper lighting is another secret to hanging art. Many homes and stores do not have the proper lighting to display art correctly. Try to find a place that has enough lighting to make your art look good. Stand back and look at your display. If you are using glass faced works of art or photos, is there too much glare on your art from windows or other lights?

If so it isn't much of a problem to have the glass replaced with anti glare glass. I do this for customers, It doesn't cost much as I don't try to talk them into replacing mats and things they don't need unless there is a problem which I just point out to the customers and let them decide.

You need to find a local picture framer that will work with you like this. Usually this means finding a local picture framing shop in your area. The big box stores that do picture framing are not looking out for you. You will find them to be interested in only one thing and that is making sales for their store. Their prices will be very high and they will try to talk you into as much as they can whether you need it or not. You are best to delete those stores from your inventory of places to go. Go find yourself a local frame shop and get to know them or better yet, do the job yourself!

Now lets say you have several pieces of art that you’d like to display but aren't sure how to do it? Maybe you  have several smaller pieces of art that won’t fill up a significant area on your wall? Have you considered grouping the pieces together? Grouped displays are a really nice solution to these decorating dilemmas.

First, decide what pieces you will be working with and then when you begin to plan the grouping, visualize the general look you’re going for. Think of it as one large piece of art. How much space do you want to fill? What shape do you want the borders of the grouping to have?

Once you do this, it is a good practice to lay the pieces out on the floor. This enables you to arrange and rearrange the pieces before actually hanging anything on the wall. It may help if you place the out side pieces first and then fill in with the rest.

One thing you should remember is that you don’t have to keep the elements of the grouping to one type of artwork. Many times you will find that mixing and matching photographs, prints, and even other objects will result in a really unique look.

And lastly, if you do not have a large wall but have several pieces you’d like to display together, remember that a wall grouping doesn't’t need to be limited to artwork. Arrange your framed pieces around lamps, mantels, clocks or any other attractive element in the room you’d like to accentuate.

Thank You for visiting,
Sincerely, Reimond Grignon