How to Hang Your Pictures Perfectly, Every Time

When you move into a new living space, decorating will likely be somewhere on your to-do list. Decorating is a great way to put your own stamp and style on a place and really make it your own. Pictures and wall hangings are likely to be a strong component of your new decor. However, some people feel a lot of anxiety about this task; it's true, mere inches can make a big difference in your decor, and you want to make sure your pictures have the desired effect. Barring that, you just want to make sure they are hung straight!

How to Hang a Picture


There's no need for hanging pictures to be a stressful event. Follow these basic steps to hang your pictures perfectly, every time:

  1. Have a partner hold the picture against the wall in various placements. Make sure you select the ideal location for each picture in relation to your furniture and lighting. As for height, generally you'll should make sure that your eye level will be about one-fourth to one-third of the way down from the top of the image. If your picture is particularly heavy, use a stud sensor and make sure you'll be hanging your picture securely from a stud in the wall.

  2. Using a pencil, lightly mark the wall just above the top center of the picture. (You may also use the top of a piece of tape as your marker if you'd rather not mark the wall.) You can use a tape measure to ensure that your mark is truly in the center of the top of the picture.

  3. Place the picture face down on a soft surface such as a towel or the carpet. Measure from the top of the picture to its hanger. This could be a crossbar or a hanging wire in its taut position.

  4. Measure the identical distance below the mark you've made on the wall. Keep the line as vertical as possible. If your picture only has only one hanger, this is where it will sit. For more than one hanger, measure their distance apart. (For strap hangers, precision is particularly important.) Once you have this distance, divide the number by 2. Then measure this distance to the left and right of the mark you've made. If you wish, use a level to make sure the hangers will be level.

  5. Drill a hole and insert the screw(s), or hammer nail(s) into the correct positions. Make sure they stick out the proper amount from the wall for the picture to be hung.

  6. Hang the picture and enjoy!


Some additional tips:

  • Museums generally hang artwork about 57 inches from the very center of the artwork to the floor.

  • Pictures are easier to hang level and keep level with two hangers rather than one.

  • If hanging multiple pictures of differing heights, establish a "mid-height" for the room. To do so, subtract half the height of the picture from the total height. For each additional picture, add half its height to your established mid-height to determine the new top height.


Now, get ready to hang a perfect picture!