On the Wall: Do’s and Don’ts for Hanging and Styling Art - ART FIX
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On the Wall: Do's and Don'ts for Hanging and Styling Art

Hanging art is a true balancing act! Picture this: you’ve recently become the proud new owner of a new artwork and are ready to spruce up your interior with it. You may already have an idea of where to hang it, but aren’t sure whether it’ll really make the artwork shine. There’s just so much to consider: framing, colour, spacing and proportion… Argh, where to begin?! If this sounds like you, then we’ve got just the Fix for you: here’s our do’s and don’ts for hanging and styling art in your home!

To get things started, let’s ask an expert: interior designer Monique van der Reijden, who you met in our Episode 13 on the art of collecting: 

“Your artwork is the main character of your space – so treat it like one! Give it the main stage in your interior.”

“Your artwork is the main character of your space - so treat it like one when styling it!”

With this golden rule in mind–making the artwork the main character of your space–let’s move onto the do’s and don’ts of hanging art in your home. 

FRAMING

DON’T underestimate the importance of framing! Framing can make or break your artwork, and is really its own form of art. 

DO consult a professional framer if you’re in doubt. Their knowledge and experience will only add more value to your artwork!

DO consider investing in protective glass when getting your artwork framed. But be careful – UV glass might not fully protect your artwork, so museum glass is preferable.

POSITIONING: USE YOUR SPACE

DON’T hang a small picture on a large wall, it can appear lost and lonely, whereas a more substantial artwork could dominate and overwhelm your space. 

DO consider the space and practicalities of the room. Consider what will surround the artwork and how the light changes throughout the day, falling onto the piece. Questions to ask yourself are what will happen in the evening, do you have a spotlight? Will there be pieces of furniture surrounding the artwork that distract from it?

HANGING SINGLE ARTWORKS

DON’T hang your artwork randomly, in the middle of the wall. Or–god forbid–too high or low. This might make it harder to view your artwork.

DO hang a single piece of art at eye-level. Depending on the height of the ceiling, 155-160cm is the magic number! 

DON’T hang your piece too close or too far above furniture. This might look cramped or haphazard. 

DO hang it about 10-15cm above your furniture for a perfect ratio that’ll make your artwork the star of the room!

DON’T use a pencil or pen to mark your walls in preparation for hanging, this might leave dirty marks that are difficult to remove. 

DO use post-it notes instead to mark out the edges of the picture frame. You’ll know exactly where to place your hooks, leaving your wall mark-free. 

Happy young couple hanging a painting together at home - lifestyle concepts

DON’T try to hang your art by yourself. Particularly heavier, bigger works can be a struggle to hang while alone and could result in unlucky accidents. Live by the rule: if you can’t carry it yourself, don’t try and hang it yourself.

DO consider hiring a professional to help you with your heavier artwork. This way both you and your art will stay unscathed.

CLUSTERS: HANGING MULTIPLE ARTWORKS

DON’T hang your artworks too far apart from one another once you decide to hang two or more pieces on one wall. This will make them look disconnected from each other. 

DO treat your artworks as a group! Space multiple pieces only a few centimetres (5-6cm) apart to get that cohesive look, and hang them at ca. 155-160cm from the floor to the center of the grouping for the perfect cluster!

STYLING

DON’T overwhelm the space with the glitz and glam of your decor or furniture, it can really be a mood kill. Remember the golden rule? Your artwork is the main character. It needs space and light. 

DO enhance your work of art by subtly repeating the colors in it in your interior, whether its a coffee-table book, a cushion or a designer vase – this will optically balance your space while subconsciously drawing more attention to the work of art itself.

STORAGE

DON’T store your picture or print for too long after purchasing it. Make it a goal to have it framed within a year.

DO make it a priority to handle your artwork with care, if you do plan on storing or archiving it. You should always store it between acid-free paper, as it might discolor otherwise. Think of it as you would of a photoalbum, in which all photos are protected by an extra layer of paper!

HANDLE WITH CARE: PRESERVATION

DON’T place your artwork too close to a cooling or heating unit such as air conditioning, radiators or air vents, as this might result in long-term damages to the piece. Avoid placing your artwork in direct sunlight, particularly photographs and works on paper. This may cause irreversible damages. Even with UV protective glass, the work will discolor over time.

DO place your artwork in a temperate, dry environment, away from a window or direct light source, to ensure your investment will last for years to come!

DON’T touch your paintings with your bare hands. Although they may seem clean to the naked eye, your skin contains oils that might transfer onto your artwork and result in stains or damages to the canvas. 

DO wear a clean pair of lightweight gloves while handling your painting, to keep it fresh and squeaky clean!

Now that you know all the do’s and don’ts of styling art in your home, it’s time to get hanging! Don’t have any art yet, or looking for new pieces to spruce up your interiors? Then our Art Fix limited edition prints might be just the thing for you. Check them out here: Art Fix Editions.

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