I'm often asked the question "what's the easiest way to hang a frame?". After five years of working at IKEA as a visual merchandiser, hanging numerous RIBBA frames, I've picked up a few tricks along the way that take the guesswork out of the process. Now, I get to share with you what I've learned and will walk you through step by step on how to hang a frame without breaking a sweat.
Before we get started, let's first determine where you should hang your frame. Here are three things to consider before you land on the "perfect spot."
1. Space: First, check to see what items are near the space/area you want to hang your frame. Is there a sofa? A window? A corner? A doorway? A bookshelf? Other frames? You will want to consider all these items when choosing the perfect spot for your frame as they will play a part in the overall composition of the space. Try to avoid creating "visual clutter". Make sure your frame fits in the space and that it doesn't compete with the other items in the room.
2. Size: For smaller frames (8x10 smaller) you will want to avoid hanging them on large blank walls unless of course you are going for a minimalist look. I find that smaller frames tend to work best in smaller spaces like a hallway, entryway, or the space between two doorways/pieces of furniture. For larger frames (11x14 or larger) make sure that the frame is not hung too close to the ceiling, other pieces of furniture, or too close to the corners in the room.
3. Height: The most common rule of thumb for hanging frames is to hang it at eye level. That, of course, can mean many things to different people depending on how tall you are. Take for instance my four very tall brothers (all over 6ft). For them, eye level is 72". Hanging a frame at this height practically means hanging the frame from the ceiling. A general rule of thumb is to make sure the center of your frame measures 61" from the floor (60" to 65" is the general range).
If you're still not sure where to hang your frame then try this easy trick. Make a template. Using paper cut out a template to the size of your frame. If you have a large frame, you can tape several pieces of paper together, or you can use a roll of brown craft paper or newspaper.
Now, attach the template to the wall using blue painter's tape (Note: the painter's tape is "paint friendly" so it won't peel off the paint on your walls when you remove the template). Adjust the template until you find the perfect spot. Once you find the right place for your frame take your pencil and lightly mark the top of the template as well the side.
Now that you have chosen the perfect spot for your frame let's get started!
Here's what you'll need:
- Nails and/or Screws & Anchor
- Other: Most artwork comes with hardware to hang your frame. In this post I will be using the hanging hardware that came with the frame I purchased (see reference image below).
Before you begin, make sure the glass in the frame is clean (on both the inside and outside of the frame). You can use a window cleaner with a clean cloth or paper towels to remove any smudges or lint.
Getting Started!1. Insert wire through clips
Begin by placing the end of the wire through the clip and loop it back around till it meets the longer end of the wire. Next, twist the shorter end of the wire around the longer piece 3-4 times. This will help secure the wire and keep it from slipping out from the clips.
Before you secure the other side, you will want to make sure there is enough slack in the wire so that when you adhere the clips to the backboard there is enough slack. Once both clips are secure with the wire, it's time to place the clips onto the backboard.
2. Slide clips onto backboard
Next, slide the clips onto each side of the backboard of the frame. Make sure to position each clip below a black tab (see reference image below) to keep the clips from shifting after the picture is hung on the wall (as gravity has a way of moving it out of place).3. Secure the black tabs
Using a flat surface such as a flat head screwdriver or a butter knife bend down the black tabs around the frame. These tabs help secure the backboard to the frame, so it's important that you securely flatten them to the surface of the backboard.
Once all the black tabs are secure, it's time to hang! I will use my measurements as examples for you to follow along. Note: your measurements will be different so be sure to have a pen a paper handy to write everything down.Now, let's take some measurements!In the next few steps I will break down the five basic measurements that you will need in order to hang your frame. You will need a piece of paper, pencil, and a measuring tape for the next few steps.4. Measure the hanging wireFirst, using your measuring tape pull the hanging wire toward the top of your frame. Write this measurement down before you move on to the next measurement.5. Find the heightA- Using your measuring tape, measure 61" from the floor and make a light mark on the wall at 61" notch.B- From the 61" mark measure up half the width of the height of your frame and make a light pencil mark (my frame is 23" tall so half of that measurement is 11.5").6. Find the widthC- Next you will need to measure the width of your frame. Using your measuring tape measure from the left side to the right side of the frame. You will use this measurement in the next step to find the center point of where you will hang your frame. 7. Find the centerD- Using the measurement in Step #6 (example: 23" is the width of my frame) divide it in half and make a light mark on the wall.E- Now, using the measurement you marked in Step #5 (example: 61" + 11.5"-half the height of my frame). From this mark you will measure 2" down. Make a light mark on the wall. Where the 2" mark and the 11.5" mark meet is your center point where you will insert your nail and/or screw.8. Hammer time!Place a nail on the final mark you made in Step #7 (center point). With your hammer drive the nail into the wall. I like to angle the nail upward slightly when I hammer it into the wall so that the wire is less likely to slide off the nail. Make sure not to hammer the nail all the way into the wall. I like to leave at least 1/4" inch of the nail out from the wall to hang the frame on.9. Hang the frameHold the bottom of the frame and with your other hand grab the wire on the back of the frame. Eye up where the nail is and lift the frame slightly above the nail and slide the frame down till the wire catches on the nail.10. Level it outTake your level and place it on the top of your frame. Gently shift the frame to the left and the right till the level shows that the frame is level.You're finished!Now step back and enjoy your hard work. If you follow these basic guidelines that I've outlined in this post, you can hang any frame with ease.A sneak peak of my artwork in progress...I'd love to hear from you! If you thought this was helpful feel free to share this post or leave a comment below. Your feedback is most appreciated as I am always looking for ways to add value to each post.