Decorating Tips: Hanging Paintings

This article discusses the proper procedures for hanging a painting.

Do you have paintings propped around the house just waiting for someone to hang them? You may be tempted to just bang nails into the wall and hook your paintings to them so that you can clear off the floor. However, for safety and aesthetic reasons, you should take the additional time necessary to hang your paintings properly.

First, decide whether you want to hang a group of paintings or if you just want to focus on one individual painting. If you are grouping your paintings, you will need to decide if you want to put several paintings around one central painting or if you want to stagger the paintings on an imaginary diagonal line. If you have paintings of different sizes or if one of them has a heavier frame, you should choose one central painting and arrange the others around it. However, if the paintings are all similar in size and have the same frames, you may want to hang them on the diagonal. Hanging paintings on the diagonal so that they were level used to be a challenge. However, if you use a laser level, the line will be clearly marked for you. Just put a mark at an equal distance on the diagonal laser line for each painting to mark the painting's place. It is much easier to hang a single painting, since you just need to find a bare spot on the wall that is in need of a decorative element.

Once you decide how you want to group your paintings, look for a spot in the room that is at eye level. A common mistake people make when hanging their paintings is to hang them above their eyes. You do not want to gaze up at the paintings. It is easier to enjoy art when you can look straight into it.

Next, use a stud finder to see if the spot you have chosen has any studs to anchor your painting. If there are no studs, you will need to use anchors. Be sure you choose the correct type of anchors for the material the wall is made from.

If you want to hang the painting directly on the wall, you will need to use a picture hanging hook. Do not use a nail or a hook that nails into the wall. The weight of the painting can cause the nail to fall out of the wall and is a safety hazard. Make sure you use a screw in hook instead. If there is no stud, drill a hole and hammer an anchor into the wall to hold the screw. If there is a stud, you can screw directly into the wall. Hang your painting and use your level to make sure it is hanging evenly on the wall.

To add some punch to your decor, you can use a more creative technique to hang your paintings. First, measure up at least a foot above where you want each painting to hang and install a decorative hook. Hang a velvet ribbon from the hook and then hang the painting on the ribbon. If your painting is heavy, you may want to provide additional support by hanging the painting on an additional picture hook.

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