Hanging pictures is not as difficult as some interior designers would like us DIY’ers to believe. While I do not go to the extremes my best friend’s husband does (stud finder, laser level, chalk string, professional hanging kits, etc.), I do use common sense. I take the time to visualize the area before I grab the nails and hammer to begin making unnecessary holes in my walls. With just a little bit of planning and a few tools, hanging pictures is as easy as admiring them.
Most design articles advise hanging pictures and artwork at eye level because hanging them higher or lower distracts from the artwork. However, there are spaces where the architecture or furnishings may call for an adjustment of a few inches. For example, moving pictures that are over two chairs down a few inches will make the area cozier.
Be mindful of the space you are working with and do not overload a small wall with artwork. On the contrary, placing a small framed picture on a huge wall looks rather silly and peculiar. Adding artwork and pictures to a space can create the illusion of space – – i.e. using mirrors to create the illusion of a larger room. If you want a wall to appear wider, use large horizontal pictures. However, if height what you want, use large vertical pieces to give the illusion of a taller wall.
When deciding how to place pictures or artwork on a wall, it is beneficial to make templates first. To make a template of each frame, trace around the frame on kraft or newspaper, label the template so you know which picture it is and put an arrow pointing up so you know the direction of the picture. Hang the templates on the wall with a piece of tape or reusable adhesive (putty) and continue rearranging them until you are satisfied with the arrangement.
When you have the templates in place, you then remove one template at a time and add the appropriate picture in its place. For small pictures, using one hook is usually sufficient; however, for larger pictures it is better to use two D-rings to hang the picture or artwork. This will provide extra stability and keep the frame from tilting. Laser levels are extremely helpful when aligning the fixtures on the wall – – it will keep you from making unnecessary holes in the wall from trying to “eyeball” the placement. For heavy artwork, it is best to locate a wall stud and use this to anchor the hardware.
Tips for hanging pictures and artwork:
• Group four small pictures that have the same theme in a square to give the illusion of a larger piece of artwork.
• Place a larger frame in the middle with two smaller frames on either side. This works well with a theme such as wedding portrait and baby pictures of the bride and groom.
• Use decorative eye screws, ribbon and wire to hang pictures. Remember that pictures do not always have to be hung on a wall. Hang a small shelf and place one of the pictures on the shelf to change the look.
• For an eclectic décor, mix wooden frames with metal frames; however, be careful that you do not distract from the artwork itself.
• Hug a corner by wrapping it with a series of pictures. Using three pictures, hang two pictures on one side of the corner and the third on the other wall. The space between the pictures should be equal counting the corner of the wall as an edge of a frame.