ATYH: Hang In There!


Designer Tom Chandler shares tips for hanging artwork in your home!

Photography by Janet Warlick



No. 1. The art doesn’t have to match the sofa.
No 2. Everything doesn’t have to be — and cannot be — hung at eye level.


Define the space. “Introduce art into the space created by the placement of the furniture,” Tom Chandler, Little Rock interior designer, advised.

This oversized painting, “Untitled” by Kathy Sanders, (right) was commissioned for the space and hung so its top is even with the top of the window facing on the opposite wall. Chandler chose one piece, versus several, for simplicity’s sake. “This room is to the right of the main living room, which has two large, built-in bookcases that make a strong statement and are perceived as artwork,” Chandler said. So, simple is better.


Add light. The correct lighting can make an inexpensive piece look amazing. These pieces are lit by recessed clock receptacles, installed behind the artwork to eliminate unsightly cords.

Think relationally. Artwork should be placed in a way that relates to the furniture closest to it, which, in this case (opposite page), are these sage green armchairs. The paintings, created by Sandy Hubler, owner of The Showroom, were  placed 5 inches above the chair. While the artwork in the center, a piece by Gino Hollander, is significant and especially beautiful, it does not play into the placement of the two smaller paintings flanking it.



 Measure twice; hang once. Here’s Chandler’s method: Measure the distance from the bottom of the frame to the wire pull, then add the appropriate number of inches, for instance — to the left, right, up, down — that you want it to hang from its surroundings, such as doorframes, moldings or furniture. In this case, the artwork measures 20 inches wide, and the wire pull is at 18 inches. So the wire hanger was placed 23 inches above the chair.

If you’re hanging multiple pictures in a gallery-like setting, hang the largest piece first, Chandler advises. This will dictate placement of the others. Again, consider the nearby environment to determine how high or low to hang the first piece.

Tom Chandler & Associates
2210 Cantrell Road
Little Rock, AR 72202

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