4 Tips for Hanging Your Decor

By Christine DiMaria

Level Your home comes to you as a blank canvas. You’re responsible for giving it the personal finishing touches that make it comfortable, familiar, and reflective of you. We can help you add these decorations without causing damage to your home and the decorations themselves.

Selecting a Nail

It’s important to select the correct nail because a nail that’s not meant to handle the weight of your artwork could equal the demise of your frame. Usually you can use a standard finishing nail to hang your photos or artwork. These tend to look inconspicuous and don’t leave large holes in your walls. There are different sizes of finishing nails, so make sure you select one that’s strong enough to hold your wall art. The gauge size determines the strength. The smaller the gauge – a number between 16 and 10 – the stronger the nail. The 16-gauge nails are best for light-weight sconces and picture frames, while the 10-gauge nails are better suited for heavy pictures and frames. If you want to hang a picture frame on brick, stone, or concrete, opt for a screw and pre-drill the hole. Screw anchors will give extra support. You may choose anchors, which are ideal for wall adornments that are between 10 to 25 pounds. They work well to hang smoke detectors, bulletin boards, lightweight shelving, and light fixtures. They work well for wall-mounted mirrors on plaster walls, too. All-purpose drywall anchors are great for heavy picture frames, door chimes and wall-mounted mirrors on drywall. Use pointed mollys for shelving on drywall or plaster, or for mirrors that are over 20 pounds and placed on a plaster wall. Tap-in anchors work best for loads under 10 pounds. Metal toggle bolts support heavy loads of 25 to 50 pounds in plaster, concrete block, or drywall. The plastic variety are best for drywall and plaster and should only hold 10 to 25 pounds. Use mirror clips for frameless wall-mounted mirrors.

Hammering in the Nail

When you hammer them in the wall, you should hammer at a 45-degree angle for the best results. Try hammering them into a stud if possible. If you’re hanging something heavy, it’s a necessity to nail it into a stud.

Getting It Straight

Use a laser level and begin by using the control to line it up how you want it. Lightly make a few marks going across your wall in pencil. If you opt for a standard level, position it where you want the picture. Get it as straight as possible. Take notice of where the bubble is. You should have it in the center. You may want to draw light pencil marks at the top, so you can refer back if the picture moves at any point. A ruler works well for gauging whether the picture has moved off your mark. When you hang multiple pictures, try using gridded wrapping paper. Cut a large piece and hang it on your wall. Make sure you use a level to ensure that the grid is on your wall straight. Tape the grid to the wall, then align your pictures and nails on the grid so that they are hanging in a pleasing arrangement. Don’t be afraid to nail through the wrapping paper – it’s easy to pull off the nail when you’re done.

Hanging Without Nails

There are a few different options you can select to hang a picture or mirror without marring your wall. If you can’t use nails, use hooks with adhesive. Make sure the hooks you use are rated high enough to handle the weight load you intend to put on them. Or try using heavy-duty mounting tape that’s double sided. Another option is removable picture hooks that utilize putty to adhere them to the wall. Frameless posters are affordable and good for temporary artwork. Additionally, you can string a clothes line (or curtain wire) in any room of your house and use clothes pins to display them. By using the above tips, your pictures will hang straight and look fabulous on your walls. Plus, you won’t risk damaging a frame or decoration by hanging it up incorrectly.