Framed art and photographs are wonderful creations that can express our style, enhance the decor of our home, and bring enjoyment to our guests. For these reasons, artwork should be expertly hung to optimize its style.
Family and guests shouldn’t need to strain themselves to view the artwork. Centering the artwork at eye level, ensures that it can be admired comfortably. Arrangements should also be pleasing to the eye and create feelings such as warmth, excitement, and wonder. All pieces should be hung with the proper anchors so they remains safely in place and secure.
All this can make the project seem daunting! The project gets put off, frames and art pile up and create clutter instead of beauty.
Here are recommendations and expert tips to make the most of your art:
The Right Height
The general rule of thumb is to hang your artwork at eye level or slightly lower on a wall with no furnishings. This means that the center of your artwork should be approximately 60 inches from the floor. This height can vary by as much as five inches either way.
Aim for slightly lower heights in rooms where people spend time sitting, or the ceilings are low. Hanging pieces higher than 60 inches is recommended in rooms where the ceilings are high, or when it just looks better.
When hanging pieces above sofas, sideboards, dressers, stands or mantles, the eye level rule doesn’t always apply. The bottom of the frame should be between six to eight inches above the top of the item. Art and furniture should be close enough together that they appear as a cohesive unit. If there is a large gap, they will seem disjointed, and the art will look like it is floating on the wall.
If the furniture piece is very low, consider lowering the artwork so the pieces appear connected. If your ceilings are very high, you can hang artwork between 10 to 12 inches above the furniture to fill up the wall space.
The Right Size and the Right Grouping
The artwork should also relate in size to any furniture, meaning a small work of art hanging right above a long couch won’t look right. This would require a large work of art or multiple works of art hung as a grouping.
When hanging multiple works, treat them as if they are one unit of art. Anchoring multiple works around the focal point will help the collection appear balanced. The ideal spacing between multiple pieces is three to six inches, depending on the size of the wall. Groupings should contain at least one cohesive element such as theme, color, frame, size, and matting. Similar themes include botanicals, family, travel, and abstract shapes to name just a few.
A variety of themes, all in beige and black, represent cohesiveness through color. Family or travel photos, all matted in coordinating frames can create an area to linger and peruse.
Always arrange the grouping on the floor first to ensure it looks balanced. This is the ideal time to measure the overall and in-between space. Now let your creativity come in. You can arrange the works in horizontal or vertical lines, or stagger them for a more artsy impression.
Expert tip: Take a picture of the grouping on the floor so that you can create the same look on the wall.