3 Biggest Mistakes When Hanging Pictures

How To Hang Artwork

by Alli

When it comes to wall decor, I’ve noticed the 3 biggest mistakes when hanging pictures. 

In my opinion, pictures and artwork complete a room. Wall decor reminds me of jewelry. You can read my jewelry tips here!

When you put on that gorgeous outfit, it needs a little something to take your look to the next level. That’s when you add a little bling to get the look you’re after.

Well, that is exactly what pictures/artwork does for a room.  Artwork finishes a room’s decor.


However, (you knew that was coming, didn’t you?) just like in wearing jewelry, there is an art to hanging pictures. Once you know the basics, you’re good to go.

I Have A Bad Habit . . .

I have a strange habit (probably more than one) of redecorating people’s homes . . . in my mind. It’s true.

I was once at a funeral in the cutest little chapel and before the funeral began, I had taken some obvious misses away from the decor and added some other elements to turn it into the most charming chapel. It just needed a few tweaks. Of course, it was all done in my mind!

I remember visiting a beautiful home once, but the furniture placement in the great room was all wrong. By the time I left, I had repositioned all of the furnishings . . . in my mind.

Here’s what I think are the 3 biggest mistakes when hanging pictures.

3 Biggest Mistakes when Hanging Pictures

1.  Placing the artwork too high on the wall

This is the most common mistake people make. And it just makes the entire room look unbalanced.  

Wall decor should (ideally) be at eye level. Who’s eye level? My rule is about 57″ – 60″ from the floor to the center of the art.  For rooms with high ceilings, artwork can be hung a little higher. Don’t make people look up to see your artwork.

I always hold artwork up against the wall (or get someone else to) while I step back to make sure it fits. I use a level to ensure that my pictures hang straight. Crooked pictures are a pet peeve of mine.

2.  Placing a small painting on a large wall

If you have large wall space and only have small pictures, hang a grouping of artwork. I always lay the grouping out on the floor and move them around until I find what works.

Don’t be afraid to mix things up. I usually make sure the grouping has one thing in common, like using the same color frames – all white or all black.

And then, I usually throw in an element of surprise. Just be sure and treat a grouping as one piece of art.

I love this gallery wall art from Pottery Barn

gallery wall art

3.  Not thinking outside the box.

Wall decor can be so much more than just paintings or pictures. Don’t be afraid to mix things up! And trust your eyes! If it doesn’t look right, readjust and try again.

Never be afraid to change things up seasonally or from room to room. That picture you thought would look great over your sofa and didn’t, may look awesome hanging above your bed.

Bonus Tip:  Pictures, artwork, and wall decor need not be expensive. Pay a visit to your local Homegoods, Ross, Target, and second-hand stores. And never leave without checking out the clearance aisle.

wall art behind a console table - 3 Biggest mistakes when hanging pictures

What’s your very favorite wall decor in your home?