How to show your wall art off like a pro

Art doesn’t need to be expensive to be beautiful. Pick things that speak to your heart and decorate your empty wall spaces for visual — and emotional –- pleasure.

Adding art to your living space is a way to add color, texture, interest and style. But, don’t fall for the mistake of an undersized print on an oversized wall or placing pieces too high or too low. Read on for inspiration on how to hang art like a pro and how to use traditional household items in non-traditional ways.

The “golden rule” of hanging a picture is to have the center of the photo 57 inches from the floor. This is the standard eye-height of the average person.  This measurement is used in most art galleries and museums. If you want to be even more precise, you can divide the height of the frame by two; from that number, subtract the distance from the top of the frame to the hanging hardware; add this number to 57, 58, 59, or 60.

Other decorator tips for hanging art include: 

  • The bottom of the frame on artwork hung over furniture should be no more than 6-8” above the piece. 
  • Consider hanging pictures lower in children’s rooms or in rooms where you spend most of your time sitting.
  • If you have extremely high ceilings, you might need to adjust the 57” rule.

* The 57” rule won’t necessarily apply to spaces like stairwells and mantles.

But if you want truly interesting walls, don’t settle for one piece of art or one solo picture -– try these suggestions:

Invent your own gallery. Different sized and colored photo frames grouped together on a wall can turn your home into your own art gallery … and you need to look no further than your smartphone for beautiful and interesting photos!

Old maps put in frames or attached to canvases make unique art pieces. Plus, if you use maps from your travels -– even better!

Hang baskets or your collection of hats for three-dimensional accents. These work well behind a headboard, in a bathroom, above a door, or anywhere that isn’t high traffic.

Plates and bowls with strong colors or bold patterns make wonderful anchoring décor additions to any room.

Go big! Take your favorite picture to make one large print. It doesn’t have to be expensive; there are plenty of internet companies that make these prints. Try shutterfly.com,  greatbigcanvas.com or easycanvasprints.com. 

Want more? Divide your photo into sections and make two, three or four large canvases out of one photo  — and place it to fill an entire wall. A piece made into two parts is called a diptych and three parts is a triptych. 

Remember, less can be more. It’s a hard lesson to learn, particularly if you love art, but not every wall needs to have art on it. Also, not every piece of art you own needs to be displayed. 

In order to give your artwork the attention it deserves, you’ll need to leave some empty space on your walls. This allows the eyes to rest and fosters a calmer, less chaotic environment. Remember, you can store pieces and rotate them periodically when you’re ready for a new look!

Don’t have a photo to use?  Try free photo sites like pixabay.com and find something that works perfectly in your home.

Try out some of these ideas today to make your house feel more like a home!