How to Hang Art

Interior walls with blue painting and mirrors

What is the best height to hang art on a wall? Many people struggle with this question. Most people typically choose one of
two options when hanging art – and both of them are incorrect!

Many people hang pictures, wall hangings, mirrors, wreathes, and other types of wall art too high. Others do not give it any thought and might use an existing nail in the wall.

You should hang art at eye level. But because not everyone in the family is the same height, here’s a tried and true formula. Hang the picture so that the center of it is 60 inches from the
floor. For example, say you have a painting that is 24”H x 36”W. Get a metal tape measure and measure 60 inches from the floor and place a piece of painter’s tape or make a small pencil or chalk mark on the wall. Because the painting is 24 inches high, the top of the painting will be 12 inches (half of 24) above that mark on the wall.

If you are hanging artwork above a mantle or fireplace, you may need to adjust the measurements. You would typically hang the bottom of the piece 2-6 inches above the top of the mantle or fireplace.

Here’s one final tip. Rub some chalk on the back of the sawtooth hanger(s) [or other picture hardware] or at the very top of the wire you use to hang the piece of artwork. Then hold the artwork up (following the guidelines above) and gently rub the chalky hardware against the wall so it leaves a powdery mark. Now you’ll know exactly where to place your nail.


With many satisfied clients since 2008, Barbara Graceffa owns and operates Secretary of the Interior in Quincy, MA offering creative decorating services at reasonable rates. If you have a blog topic to suggest or need professional help with decorating, downsizing, decluttering, or home staging and relocation services or wish to learn more about her decorating workshops and quilt trunk shows, please contact her via her website www.sec-interior.com or phone 617.921.6033.

By Barbara Graceffa

Barbara Graceffa, CEO of Secretary of the Interior, serves decorating clients; assists with professional organizing, home staging and moving assistance; teaches on these subjects; and delivers quilt lectures and trunk shows.

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