Many times, I am asked by customers what is the right height to hang pictures, large art pieces or large clocks. While there is a rule of thumb, I have found that there are times when “The Rule Of Thumb” does not apply. In this post, I am going to explain why this rule sometimes does not apply and when it does. Using this tip when decorating your home will help create a beautiful space like you see in magazines.
So what is the rule of thumb? Many interior design experts say that the midway point of the piece should be 57” to 60” off the floor, like pictured below. I use this rule often when hanging wall art and clocks in my store displays. While this rule works well on this large wall with a low bench, some adjustments need to be made when other elements are being used.
For instance, when placing this console table under the clock and still using the rule of thumb, the clock is a bit too low and is somewhat hidden by the other items on the console table.
I needed to adjust the clock up a bit because this table is higher than most console tables. This adjustment also enables the clock to look more natural with the decorative items I am using on the table. I could have replaced the decorative items for something shorter and not moved the clock, but I felt the clock still needed to be a bit higher because of the height of the console table.
There are other exceptions to this rule, like with our coffee bar. Every piece I place between our bracketed shelves is placed in the center of the space. It doesn’t much matter what the piece is. It always looks best in the center of the shelves. The center point is about 10 inches above what the rule of thumb would suggest.
Another exception is above a headboard or over a sofa. The bottom of the art should be 8” to 10” above either piece. Your goal here is to make sure your art is not floating above but is an extension of the headboard or sofa.
Things to keep in mind…
The average human eye level is 57 inches. Keep this in mind if you have soaring ceilings, as you may feel art needs to be placed higher. Just remember that it needs to relate to a human scale, not the scale of the structure. Also, take into consideration the height of your family… if you are taller, then the eye level will be a bit different and adjustment will need to be made to create a more pleasing look to your family members.
What to Avoid….
When hanging any wall décor, always avoid placing art so high that someone hurts their neck looking at it.
So, there you have it. While I am not a trained interior designer/decorator this is the rule I use and is very useful when trying to create a more designer look at home and in our store. I hope this helps and inspires you to create the home you have always wanted.