Decorating a room is something that most of us have no formal training in. It’s just something that seems to be expected of us at a certain age. We become adults, and our rooms are supposed to look elegant and mature.
But there’s a long and winding road between dorm-room chaos and catalog-quality interior design. We’re here to help with that confusing path! Right now, let’s focus on a simple and powerful thing that you can do to make your room more beautiful: hanging the right wall art
Why wall hangings matter
First things first: why should you hang anything on your walls?
Because it looks good, of course, but there are other reasons which are a bit more satisfying. Good art can actually be good for our mental health. Our minds respond to the spaces that we’re in, and art makes those spaces more pleasant.
The right art can set the tone for your room. Just as movie posters in a movie theater or oil paintings in a museum define the look of those spaces, so does your choice of wall hangings affect the feel of your space. A pennant hanging in your basement creates a different vibe than an elegant black-and-white photo hanging in its place.
To get the most out of our wall hangings, we need to create a sense of space and beauty. That means picking the right wall art, hanging it properly, and using space wisely.
Choosing the right wall art
The wall art in your space should reflect your passions, tastes, and priorities. But it should also be presented in a way that makes you feel calm and helps your space serve its intended purpose.
Your dorm-room posters and photo collages were personal, but perhaps not beautiful (at least, not to your more mature eyes now). But you don’t have to fill your space with generic art. Consider customizing your wall art with rolled canvas prints. Modern printing services can whip up art-quality canvases with custom designs and images on them, so you can keep your personal photographs without sacrificing the feel of a classy and well-designed space.
Hanging your art
It’s not just about what you put on the walls — it’s where you put it, too. If you hang art at the wrong height, you can make your space feel clumsy and poorly proportioned. If you hang things too close together, you’ll get a cluttered and small feeling from a room that should feel large and comfortable.
Aim to hang art at eye level. Keep in mind that everyone is not, of course, the same height. If you’re very tall or short, cheat up or down a bit to make sure that the art looks like it’s hanging at the right level! Some designers use a very simple rule: “eye height” is 57 inches on center, no matter what. You don’t have to be that strict, but try to be in the ballpark.
Adapt to furniture and other features of the room, too. Art that’s hung above furniture will end up higher on the wall, and that’s okay. Don’t hang art exactly at the top of nearby furniture — vary up heights and shapes in your room for a more natural look.
You should generally keep art spaced apart so that each piece gets its due. But if you have pieces that look like they’d make a good group, you can combine them into one as long as you’re smart about spacing. Leave a bit of room around each piece and work the hangings into a pattern with interesting shapes and limited dead space.
If you invest in quality wall hangings and hang them properly, you’ll see the difference that a well-designed and decorated space can make.