How To Arrange Art On A Wall To Elevate A Room

art arranged and hung on a wall

How To Arrange Art On A Wall To Elevate A Room

Decorating barren walls, or even reorganising crowded walls is an exciting feat. Creating a wall of art is a beautiful way to elevate a room, all while tying in the interior design of the room. 

However, arranging and hanging art on a wall isn’t quite as straightforward as it may seem. That’s why we’ve compiled a guide on how best to arrange art on a wall to maximise your space and compliment your surroundings.

The first step in arranging art on a wall is first planning where you want it to go. 

Plan Where Your Art is Going to Go

Before you get too excited and pull out the hammer or drill too soon, you should plan where you want your artwork to be hung. There are a number of apps that can help you with the placement of your art. There is also a more practical method of using kraft paper and tape to get a visual insight of what the placement of your art will look like before fully committing.

Alternatively, for more complicated arrangements involving several or larger art pieces, you should want to see how it looks before putting any nails into your wall. One easy way to do this is to lay out the art and the arrangement of the pieces you want to display on the floor in front of you.

Having a plan of where you want your art to go and how it’ll be arranged is important to consider before you start hammering because you’re most likely going to make mistakes. There are several different places that art can be arranged but each comes with its own rules and advice.

Hanging Artwork Above a Mantlepiece or Fireplace

When hanging art above a mantlepiece or fireplace, the art usually looks best hung around three inches above it. 

This is because a mantlepiece is usually already quite high up. If you were to hang your art much higher it would look too high up and would be too high above natural eye level.

Hanging Artwork Above Furniture

Hanging art can make your sofa or bed look more interesting, however, there are a few things to consider when deciding to arrange and hang art above furniture.

As a general rule, it’s typically advised to leave plenty of space freed up between the bottom of the art piece and the top of the furniture it hangs above. This is to create more of an elevated look and to prevent any possible damage to the art.

The size of the art needs to be considered if you’re wanting to arrange it above a piece of furniture. Visually, for the art to look most aesthetically pleasing it shouldn’t be any wider than the furniture it hangs above. It also shouldn’t be massively shorter than the length of the furniture otherwise it will look lost on the wall.

Creating a Gallery Wall

When creating a gallery wall, it’s important to choose art that has similar colour palettes or themes. Black and white art pieces look especially good displayed together because they have the perfect matching colour scheme. 

Creating a gallery wall gives you the opportunity to be as creative as possible when displaying and hanging your art. At the end of the day, it is your wall and your art so you’re free to experiment and be creative with how you arrange and display your art.

Gallery walls are the perfect opportunity to display an array of art pieces to create an eyecatching vision.

Hang Your Art at Eye Level

A crucial rule of displaying art is to have the art displayed at eye level. Positioning the art so the centre of the piece is displayed at eye level makes for easy viewing and is one of the first things your attention is drawn to when entering the room.

There are some exceptions to this rule where the art would look more appropriate lower down. This would be the case with rooms with a low ceiling or rooms where its occupants would often be sitting such as living rooms or dining rooms. 

Whether to hang your art at eye level is situational and depends on the kind of room it will be displayed in, so this will require your judgement to make the final call.

Layout and Spacing

When hanging your art it can be quite difficult to judge the layout and spacing between different pieces just from eye judgement alone. Using a measuring aid to help you accurately measure spacing is recommended. 

When deciding the layout it really is down to you – you can be creative as you like. You can play around with having different widths between your art pieces or keep all the width lengths the same for a more uniform look.

If all the art is the same size it can be effective to create a grid with the same height and width between all the pieces.

Useful Tools for Hanging Art

When planning to arrange and hang art, you should first choose the right tools for the job. There are numerous pieces of equipment to help you hang art efficiently, so understanding what you need ahead of time enables you to execute your vision in the most efficient way.

Hangers and Nails

Smaller or lighter pieces of art can be hung safely with a nail without a stud. We would recommend buying a picture hanger to use as well as your nails.

  1. Place the bottom of the hook or picture hanger on the fixing point (where you would like to hang it).
  2. With a small hammer, hammer the nails into the wall gently.

Don’t Want to Use Nails?

If you’re apprehensive about drilling any holes, adhesive strips are always an option.

Adhesive strips are the perfect thing to use when you don’t want to permanently damage your walls – perfect for renters or those who love to change up their decor regularly. 

Adhesive strips in various sizes are easy to get hold of at most hardware stores and online.

Anchors for Drywall

Anchors for drywall are really effective tools for supporting hanging structures. They can provide a sturdy mount on drywall or hollow walls when combined with the appropriate screw. 

The anchor goes between the screw and the drywall, fixing art to the wall more efficiently than a screw alone would. 

Framing and How to Hang Art Prints Without Frames

To frame or not to frame your art is an important decision. Sometimes finding the perfect frame to compliment your art can be a long process but is worth it in the end when your art is displayed beautifully framed on the wall.

There are several things to consider when looking for the perfect frame. Since there are thousands of styles of frame, the choices are endless.

The art and the frame are often seen as one unit so it is important that both match each other. You don’t want the frame to be too much and take the attention away from the art piece so it is important that the frame is less eye-catching than the art itself.

However, a frame isn’t always necessary if you don’t want one. Canvas prints are a popular option for when you want to display unframed art. 

Any art that is lightweight can be displayed without a frame. If the artwork isn’t too expensive it can simply be displayed with washi tape, map tacks or Blu Tack. If the art is more on the pricey side, you can use binder clips as it won’t damage the piece as much as map tacks or tape will. 

How to Hang Art on Different Surfaces

Different surfaces call for different methods when it comes to hanging your art. If you read each guide you’ll be in the know when it comes to hanging your art on a variety of surfaces.

How to Hang Wall Art on Drywall

For most surfaces other than wood, you can usually use just a nail or a screw; however, the majority of walls are hollow and covered with soft plaster or drywall. There are pillars, also known as studs, that reside behind plaster or drywall and should provide support for any wall hanging. 

The supporting studs can be hard to locate and are not necessarily always in the right position. You will need to take some time to hunt down and buy some hooks designed for hollow walls.

How to Hang Art on Concrete Walls

For concrete walls, you will need to use sturdier hanging hooks. Consider using lead wall plugs to support the hooks.

You will also need a power drill with a carbide drill bit. This will be used to form a hole for the plug. Once you have marked and measured up the hole, carefully drill into place and insert the screw.

How to Hang Art on a Wall With Panelling

Panelled walls are perfect surfaces for displaying art.

You will need hooks to attach onto the panel with string or wire attached to the back of your frame. Hang your art along the edge of the panel and secure it in place with the thread/string and hooks attached to the panel.

Looking for the Perfect Art to Hang?

Hopefully, our guide has shown you how best to arrange art on a wall, to best compliment your existing art, and to elevate a room. 

If you’re looking for original artwork to hang on your walls, big or small, browse our selection of paintings and art prints for sale to upgrade your interior.