How to hang and arrange wall art

Man of us have plenty of beautiful pictures, photographs, canvases, embroideries and images that we accumulate over the years but never get around to displaying and hanging up on our interior hallway decor wall. When we do finally purchase the relevant picture hanging hardware, select the frames and dust off the walls, all too often we then immediately opt for hanging photos in a line in a large blank space. This self-imposed standard horizontal ruling is usually a default that homeowners resort to without second thought — but how about getting more creative? As any gallery owner or curator will tell you, there’s a lot more to hanging art than may first meet the eye.

Space utilisation

The space you have to hang pictures does not necessarily need to be a large wall space. Depending on the size of the pieces you have to hang, consider decorating small and awkward spaces with pictures. The space above doors and windows is often left untouched, as well as above furniture pushed up against walls. Wall art can even be hung above shelves strategically if not housing taller items. 

Balance and proportion

If you are hanging more than one piece of wall art as part of your interior design, it’s important to balance out pieces so they don’t look too crowded. Searching inspiration for gallery walls can be a good way to show how to lay out pieces without grouping together all the large designs, dark designs or heavy designs. Instead, spread these out across the space so that the eye is not immediately drawn to any one area over another.

Colour and theming

When hanging more than one piece of wall art in a space, you may wish to curate a theme or colour code. Even though the pieces of art are probably all at least slightly different in their content, frames and backgrounds can be mixed, matched, or selected to fit a theme or colour palette. Wall stickers can even be added around frames for an extra dimension of design or to really make things ‘pop’.

Patterns and staggering

Wall art can be hung in a pattern rather than just lines. If you have four pieces, they may be slotted together to make a square or rectangle, or if you lots more, a giant heart, star, or circle. If wall art is to be propped up on a shelf rather than hung (or are intended to look as though they’re held up rather than hung), pieces can be staggered to slightly overlap and give the impression of a more casual curation. While some wall spaces may only have room for a traditional line of pictures, others lend themselves more to a sprinkle of creativity. Lay out pieces of art on the floor to map out patterns, or stick them to the wall before drilling to avoid unnecessary holes in movable walls.

Mix it up!

Wall art can incorporate more than just framed pictures and prints. Crafts and stitches in embroidery hoops, fabric wall hangings, canvases and shaped neon lights can all lend new textures and shapes to curated wall art displays. If you’re really getting inventive with patterns and designs, mix and match with frames, hoops and other items to create a display that is eye-catching with something new every time an observer looks.

Art curation may be a career but it’s something anyone can enjoy at home. Dig out your purchased wall art pieces, browse online and in design magazines for interior inspiration….then get hanging!

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