Day 20: Hang Your Artwork

Day 20: Hang Your Artwork

Janel Laban
Jan 29, 2013

artwork12913.jpg Day 20: Tuesday, January 29
Assignment: Hang the artwork you chose and had framed earlier this month

All the way back on Day 6 (we were so young and hopeful then!) your assignment was to choose a piece of artwork that you'd love to display in your home and start the process of getting it framed and ready to hang by TODAY. Well, here we are - time flies when you are on a wild month long binge of cleaning and organizing, doesn't it?

Today's Assignment:

• Hang the Artwork you chose and framed earlier in the Cure

The "where" question on the location of your artwork is completely up to you, of course - it can be in any room of your home, wherever it will bring you the most joy to have it on display.

Here are a few notes to help out with the "how" of getting it up on the wall:

• A good guideline from one of our perennially popular posts on the topic...

Hang your art at 57" on center. "On center" means that the middle of the picture is at 57" (obviously, the hook will be higher). Interestingly, the 57" standard represents the average human eye-height and is regularly used as a standard in many galleries and museums.

What we have discovered is that if you stick to this standard, you create a harmony among all the pictures in your home, as they will always hang in relationship to one another from their centers, not their sides. Additionally, we have also found that this helps solve the problem many people have, which is that they hang their pictures too high.

Step By Step:

1. Measure and lightly mark 57" on the wall
2. Measure top of your picture to the middle (or take height and divide by 2)
3. Measure top of your picture to the tightened wire (a small amount)
4. Subtract this last amount to tell you how far above 57" your hook should go
5. Measure up from 57" with this last amount and lightly mark on the wall


1. Picture is 20" tall
2. Middle is 10" down from top (this should rest at 57")
3. Wire comes to 2" below the top
4. 10" - 2" = 8"
5. Lightly mark 8" above your first mark OR 65" on the wall

Though this may seem complicated to read, it is quite simple when you do it. The thing to always remember is that the CENTER of all your pictures are hanging at the same 57", and you are just figuring out where the hook goes above it.

This 57" also applies to groups of pictures. Think of a group as ONE picture. After you arrange how you want them all to hang (doing this on the floor makes it easier), start with the center picture/pictures and get them at 57" on center. Then surround them with the rest of the group.

An exception to the rule, from Maxwell: One exception is artwork hung beside the bed. Because you want artwork over your bedside table to be cozier and closer to the table, I find that I hang art here lower. Rather than 57" from the floor, I look for a distance like 12"-24" above the bedside table - whatever that may be - and just make sure to keep it consistent on either side of the bed.

More helpful info:

• A thorough "how to" for hanging artwork in groups

• A smart trick for hanging artwork that's been framed with two hooks on the back

• A post explaining 3 Tried and True Guidelines for Hanging Art

We'd love to know artwork you ended up choosing and where it's going to go in your home - let us know in the comments...

Liveblogging the January Cure:
Art on the Walls

Go to January Cure Main Page for links to all the posts so far.

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Questions? Comments? Pictures? Email us about your progress at

January Cure Calendar:
Download our PDF

Get the Book: Apartment Therapy's The Eight Step Home Cure by Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan

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(Image: Bethany NauertAlan's Retreat In The Hills House Tour)

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