If there is one home improvement chore my husband despises, it’s hanging frames. He doesn’t like the pressure of making things straight and HATES making mistakes where he has to make MORE holes in the wall than originally planned.
After watching this frustrate him for years, I think I have finally come up with an EASY solution to hang frames right the first time, with perfect spacing and height and levelness. And lucky for him, now I do all the frame hanging!
Earlier this week, I “custom” framed some menus from some of our favorite meals and spray painted my one odd frame white and I was FINALLY ready to hang them all up.
Here is how I did it:
1. Take the following measurements:
- Frame width
- Wall space
2. Apply a little math (don’t worry, just the very basic stuff here)
I added the width of the frames together and subtracted them from the total wall space. This is the amount of wall space you have that is NOT going to be covered with frames (i.e. blank space). Then I took the blank space and decided how I wanted to space the frames. I had 39″, so I rounded it up to 40″.
At first, I was thinking 10″ between each (wall to frame, frame to frame, frame to frame and frame to wall), but when I looked at the frames being 10″ apart, it seemed too far. So I recalculated it so there would be 15″ between the outer wall and the outer frame and then 5″ between each frame. I drew the above sketch to help me visualize it spatially.
3. Because all my frames were different heights, I wanted them to be centered in the middle. I marked where I wanted the middle of the frames to be using painters tape. To make it level, I measured up from the floor on both sides.
4. Measure from the far ends the distance you want the outer edges of the frames to be from the walls. (This is that measurement from your calculations above. Mine was 15″).
5. Use those fake photos that come inside of the new frames and tape them onto the wall with the outside edge lining up with the mark you made. If it’s an older frame and you no longer have the insert, just cut a piece of paper or cardboard to the dimensions of your frame, like the one on the right. I also folded them into four quadrants (just fold in half length and widthwise) so that you have a good guide for where the center is). I drew the center on the cardboard since it was too thick to fold. You can line up the center with the painters tape.
6. Measure in between the two to find the center for the third frame.
7. Mark the halfway point and mark it on the painters tape.
8. Line up the center of the third insert with the mark and tape into place. Make sure you are happy with the spacing and height of your grouping now. You still haven’t drilled any holes in the wall, so this would be the time to make any changes.
I decided that I wanted my frames a little higher, so I moved each piece up 4″.After that, it’s pretty standard hanging, but here is how I like to do it:
9. Predrill a hole on top of the center of the paper (this is where that vertical fold comes in handy. Remember the paper insert is slightly smaller than the outside of your frame, so putting the screw here should land it on the spot of your frame hook. These frames have the hooks along the top of the frame, if yours don’t adjust accordingly. If you have a new pack of drywall screws, the package usually tells you what size drill bit to use for the hole.
10. Tap the dry wall screw into the hole with a hammer.
11. Drill screw into the drywall screw, leaving a little out for the hook to hang on.
12. Hang your frames and use a level to get them hanging straight! I like to use one screw per frame instead of two so that it is easy to adjust. In the case of larger items (like this piece) I have used two, but from regular size photo frames, one screw usually will suffice.
Here are my finished pieces!
I love how it came out and it was MUCH easier than methods we have used in the past. The key is using the photo insert sheets to do all the leg work, so you don’t end up making a bunch of unnecessary holes in your wall making the adjustments.
What frame hanging tricks do you know?