How to Hang Pictures on a Wall Straight & Secure Every Single Time

You get a new amazing piece of artwork home from the gallery or get a professional family portrait back from the framers, and you’re so damn excited about how good it looks that you just can’t wait to get it on the wall. So you break out the toolbox and start hammering away, only to get disastrous results. Does this scenario sound familiar?

It’s happened to the best of us. When you don’t take the time to properly hang something on the wall, you wind up with a crooked mess. Or even worse, you put it in a part of the wall that can’t support weight, and you wind up with some broken glass and a big hole. But when you abide by a couple of rules of thumb and follow our handy tips, your wall hanging will look like, well, a work of art.

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Like, did you know that you should drill a hole and hammer in an anchor before you put in a nail to hang a picture on a plaster wall? And if you fashion a piece of painter’s tape as a little shelf prior to drilling, you’ll have a little catch-all for all the plaster bits that are destined to fall.

If you’re hanging a picture on a brick wall, that’s a whole new ballgame. You’re definitely going to want to pick up a brick clip.

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Whether you’ve got plaster, brick, drywall, concrete, stucco or tile, check out the info below for a step-by-step guide that’ll help you hang anything and (nearly) everything on your walls hassle-free.

Originally posted October 2014. Updated August 2017.