By the Numbers: Measuring and Displaying Artwork in Your Home Like a Pro



Nothing in the world transforms a bare apartment, mountain cabin or empty house into a cosy, comfortable home quite the way that wonderful artwork does. Whether you hang original oil paintings or prints of notable masterpieces, a few well-placed framed art pieces can turn any room from blah to blissful.

Take a few pointers from the pros

If you think you don’t know how to properly place frames and other bits of wall decor, don’t worry. There are a number of handy hints used by art museums and galleries, and you can use them, too.

Start your quest for perfect wall art at an online gallery. offers a splendid selection of beautiful art prints by well-known and upcoming artists. Browse by artist, theme or style to find the pieces that appeal to you. Refrigerator displays of your children’s finger paintings can be framed and displayed, as well. If you have artistic talent, display some of your own artworks as well.

The art of hanging art

Decorating pros at Apartment Therapy magazine recommend hanging framed wall art in a way that centres each piece at precisely 57 inches above floor level. This, they explain, is the average height of the human eye while standing. It’s not too high to view when seated, and also happens to be the standard hanging height utilized by the best galleries and art museums.

Begin by unfurling a tape measure up the wall and making a slight pencil mark on the wall at 57 inches above the floor. Then, use the tape to measure the top-to-bottom length of the framed piece you wish to hang. Divide by two to determine the centre of the artwork. Place tension on the hanging wire to determine where to put the wall hook.

If you wish to display an eclectic grouping of framed paintings, appealing art prints, photographic pieces and other decor, work out the placement pattern on the floor before committing it to the wall, recommend small spaces experts at About. Don’t overlook odds and ends that might look amazing when displayed on a wall amongst framed pieces. Wooden initials, small shadow boxes and candle sconces can be beautiful additions to wall groupings. Remember to centre the middle of your collection at the ideal 57 inches height to achieve a designer look.

Are there rules to art collecting? Not really. Everyone likes what they like. Your home offers the perfect opportunity to build your own personal gallery, and it can be anything you prefer. Hang art pieces that make you feel good in every room in your apartment or house. Don’t overlook the bathroom, laundry room, mudroom and outdoor patio. These can be great places to show off a water resistant mosaic or collection of ceramic Mardis Gras masks. Show off your own handcrafted artwork every chance you get. Not only will it be admired, original art is a great conversation starter, too.

Laura Sims shares her love for art, design, and decor around the web with an online audience.


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