How to hang a picture
Got a new picture or a photograph to put on the wall? The hanging bit’s an art in itself. So before you bang a nail in the wall and hope for the best, read on to find out how to hang a picture perfectly.
What tools do I need to hang pictures on the wall?
You’ll need a:
- Picture hooks
- Tape measure
- Spirit level
If you’re wondering how to hang a large picture or you have masonry walls, you’ll also need a:
- Screwdriver, screws and plugs
All tools ticked? Let’s begin.
Get the right height
Generally, your eye-line should be about two thirds up the picture. Obviously this differs for everyone, so you could use the art gallery rule: 60 inches from the floor to the centre of the picture.The centre of your picture should be about 150cm or 60 inches from the floor
Another thing to consider is whether the picture will be hanging above a piece of furniture, like a shelf or a cupboard. If so, you might want to hang it slightly higher but that’s totally up to you.
Mark the wall
When you’re happy with where you want the picture to hang, hold it against the wall. Then place your pencil in a central position on top of the frame and mark the wall. This is your ‘central point’.
Measure from the frame to the picture wire
Flip the picture over, pull the picture wire (or cord) taut to its hanging position and measure the distance to the top of the frame. Let’s say that’s 10cms.
Mark your fixing point
Find the central point, measure down 9.5cms below it and mark the wall. This is the ‘fixing point’ where you will hammer in the picture hook or screw. The reason you measure down 9.5cms, rather than 10cms, is so that the picture covers the first pencil mark you made.
Check your walls
Different types of walls need different kinds of fixings and fasteners.
Hanging pictures on plaster walls
For plaster walls (and lightweight pictures), you can use pin picture hooks. Line the hook up with the fixing point mark and gently hammer it in.
Hanging pictures on masonry walls
For masonry walls, we suggest using a drill, wall plugs and a screw, particularly if you want to hang a large picture. Drill into the wall on the fixing point mark, insert the wall plug and then the screw, leaving the head protruding a little so you can hang the picture on it.
Hanging pictures on stud walls
If you have stud walls and you’ve placed your fixing point on the stud itself, it’s your lucky day. Just insert a screw straight into the stud (again leaving the head protruding so you can hang the picture).
If you’re hanging a picture on the hollow part of the wall, it’s a little more complicated but still doable! You’ll need a spiral fixing plug or a hollow wall anchor. Double-check how much weight each can take. Screw the spiral fixing plugs straight into your plaster board, then add the screw. For hollow wall anchors you need to drill a hole first, push in the anchor then insert the screw.
Hang the picture
Hang the picture on the hook or screw, then place the spirit level on the top of the frame to ensure it’s straight. And that’s it – all done! Now you just need to decide whose photograph takes pride of place.
Can we help?
If you’d like to see how it’s done first or maybe you need to do a wall collage of pictures, you might feel more comfortable with a professional. If so, we can put you in touch with a Local Heroes handyman if you need one.