In fact, hanging artwork incorrectly at the wrong height is the #1 most common design mistake we see.
Luckily, after years of hanging art, we’ve come up with three simple tips for how to hang art correctly so that you never have to second guess the placement again!
Here are the foolproof tips for hanging art that never fail us:
We find it’s best to hang single artwork at eye level, and 60 inches from center to the floor is the magic number.
If you’re hanging your art above furniture, it can be 4-6 inches above the piece.
If the art is going above a sofa or console, the piece should be approximately 2/3 width of the furniture.
As a general rule of thumb, always consider the scale of your space when hanging art.
We’ll let you in on a little house secret: We usually prefer to use larger artwork and frames rather than smaller in our projects. It’s much more simple to fill in spaces when you have less space to fill!
When hanging two art pieces, treat them as one and still hang them 60 inches from the floor to the center of the grouping.
This rule also applies to groups of three and four. Make sure they are spaced only a few inches apart, so they look together and not disconnected.
When designing a grid gallery wall, we use prints and photos with a similar theme and consistent frames. They could be black and white photos, botanicals, sketches, etc. Or we go with completely different pieces in mixed frames for an eclectic look. We usually hang large and medium pieces 2-3 inches apart, and smaller pieces 1.5-2.5 inches apart.
Make things easier on your end by tracing the frames on a paper and using painters tape to create a layout on the wall before you have to put holes in the wall.
Is the 56-60" rule measured to the bottom, middle or top of the frame?
Middle of the frame 🙂
Eye level is frustrating advice. My husband is 6’5" and I am 6’2". We hung everything at eye level, and designers tell us our stuff is too high. A measurement from floor would be more helpful.
They said 60 inches from the center of the piece (or group) to the floor.
I also don’t like the advice to hang artwork so close to the sofas. It’s not practical when you have little ones, or if you are tall, you lean back while watching TV or hanging out with friends and bang your head into a bulky frame. Kids can fingerprint the art, or pull it off the wall if it’s not secure.
Great post. I’m definitely guilty of hanging artwork and mirrors too high. However in my defense my teenage son is growing like a weed, so I hung the artwork and mirror in his room high to accommodate his growth spurts.
Ha, when it all comes down to it, you have to do what’s best for you. Thanks for reading Darcel!
Such a great post. Thanks so much for sharing these tips – it’s great to know the best practices, as I’m decorating my home.
So glad you liked it! Good luck decorating your home, I’m sure it will turn out amazing!!
Wonderful article! When hanging a series of art work together in a straight line. How do you make sure they are hung straight and evenly spaced without placing a million holes in your wall?
Great question Jen! We like to use trace the shapes of the frame on paper and tape it to the wall with painters tape and space it out before we do any damage.
I’m not an interior designer, but I’m a graphic designer and my friends can tell you I’m all about the "don’t hang it too high or too far apart!" advice. It’s the quickest way to make your beautiful home look like a frat house. Hahaha – great article guys. The Do/Don’t pics at the end are great side-by-sides.
Ha, as a fellow designer you know how it is!! Thanks for reading!
Pinning! Such a great post especially showing the right and wrong way 🙂
We’re so glad it was helpful! Thanks for reading 🙂
If you have higher ceilings is it okay to center artwork a little higher? Our ceilings are 9 feet instead of the standard 8, so I’ve centered our artwork at 66 inches. I’m pretty sure I read this on another design blog at some point. What is your opinion?
Loved this post! You mentioned that incorrect rug size was another common design mistake. I would LOVE a post about rug sizing and how to orient them in your space.
Noted! Thanks so much for reading!
Yes! I agree with this. I am always seeing people hanging art to high so that the piece does not "relate" enough to what is under it (ie. it feels too much like it’s floating or disconnected). This post is so helpful.
So glad you agree! Thanks Aimee!!
Brilliant! What seems second nature to us as designers, is explained and exampled so well to those that want to decorate themselves!! Loved!
Thanks so much Katrina!
For the 4-6 inhes above a piece of furniture, like in your dos and donts section, if there is larger pieces or taller pieces going on top the cabinet then would you hand it higher? I feel like it would cover the painting?
Does the 60 inch rule still apply if ceiling is 20ft tall?
These are great guidelines–and equally great spaces! xo Lindsey
Thanks Lindsey! Glad you enjoy!!!
Would the same apply for a wall weaving?
It’s a very big help to me..thank you..
It was very helpful, thank you.
We’re so glad!
You would cringe at the art on my walls. I have a couple of new pieces I’ve been waiting on for almost 8 weeks now. So none of my art looks "right". Instead of staring at nail holes in my walls, or fixed nail holes, I’ve just hung whatever picture I want on the Ooks in my walls. Hoping to get my new pieces in the next couple of weeks! Then I can start re-hanging pieces, and use your timely tips. Thanks!
No cringing here 🙂 We’re all doing the best we can!! You’ll get there!!
Quick question about leveling art on the wall: is it better to have it parallel to the ceiling or to have it absolutely level?
I assume parallel to the ceiling is better since that is what what make it “appear” level even if it is not. Whereas being exactly level but at odds with the ceiling will appear crooked.
How high from the bottom of an archway should art be hung
What height would you choose to place the art if the wall inside a home is very wide and high? Like twice the normal room height..
Hi Antony! These height rules still apply to high and wide walls (eye-view) 🙂
I have an 86 inch sofa that I’d like to hang art above. In looking at the 2/3 rule, my art should be around 57" W. I have two cold air returns, which limit the height of the art. I found a 3 piece set (each the same size) that I want. I have 2 options that would allow me to place the art 4-6 inches above the sofa, this is without the spacing between each piece and the total height and width is as follows: 32"H x 48" W or 32"H x 64" W. Would either of those work okay? I know one is slightly smaller that the 2/3 rule and the other would put the art just over 3/4 of the sofa size. There is a 3rd option that is 40 "H x 60"W but that would only allow me to place the art 2" from the top of the sofa due to the cold air return vents. Thank you for your help! 🙂
I have 3 seat couch along a wall, with a narrow table on the left side between the wall and couch. I want to hang some art above the couch, but there is a window above one seat on the right side. Should the art be centered in the remaining wall space, or above the remaining 2 couch seats?
So, If hanging 2 peices of art one very large and one medium in size can you place the largest one on top? I noted you have pictured the small one above the larger one.
In placing 2 artworks stacked, what if the center turns out to be the space in between the two? I have one very large and one smaller below and the eye level line happens to be right at eye level. Should I swape the very large one out and pleace the small one on top? HELP!
I have a question – we have followed the 58-62” rule from the center of the piece to the floor and sometimes that makes the piece much more than 4-6 inches above the table. For example, I hung a mirror above a console table and the center is exactly 60” from the floor, but it is more than 12 inches above the table. What do you do in that situation? I have read on other sites that 8-12 inches above furniture is an acceptable range. I would love your opinion. Thanks!
We have two canvas landscapes 16×20. Do we center them above the couch or center them on the wall. Couch is not centered on wall.
Do different rules apply to hanging art above nightstands? My nightstands are 29 inches high and 27 inches wide and I’m struggling to determine what size art/frames to buy and how high to hang from the floor or furniture. LOVE your site. It is so beautiful and informative!
I am trying to select two large equestrian prints for a long wall in a large entry hall. I can chose them either moving right or left or straight on. Any rules for this such as facing each other or away from door?
It really helped when you talked about art pieces and how to hang them at the right spot! Recently, my wife and I decided our home needs a make-over! We want to get some new furniture pieces and hang artwork on our walls, so we’ll be sure to read your tips very carefully! Thanks for the advice on why we should hang art at eye level!
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