This year, it is 25 years since we decided to leave our well paid jobs in the corporate world, and open our picture and framing gallery in Preston, the same site that we are still occupying all this time later. I though that in this blog, I would give a few tips on getting your art to look its best in your home.

1. Choose the right piece for you. Sound obvious?

When it comes to choosing artwork for your home it’s always important to ask yourself, “do I really want to look at it every day?” It may sound obvious but getting this right will make the other decisions about hanging your art much easier. Don’t get me wrong, it’s also important that the piece suits your home, but make sure you choose artwork that you will love and enjoy every single day.

2. Consider the frame.


New York, New York, a portrait of Audrey Hepburn, by Simon Claridge

The framing of a piece can quite often be just as important as the actual image itself! The frame needs to compliment the tones and colours of your chosen image, adding to its overall effect while taking nothing away. Sometimes the frame can be a nice juxtaposition to the actual image, such as Simon Claridge’s piece ‘New York, New York’ (above). However this ornate type of frame is not for everyone, or indeed every image. Also, remember that the pieces in the gallery are framed the way they are for a reason, so feel free to use our expertise as inspiration!

3. Give your art the space it deserves.

After you’ve purchased your art, the most exciting moment comes when you take it home; then comes the challenge of deciding where to hang it! I always think that it’s important to make sure you allocate enough space, whether this is dictated by ceiling height, wall width, or any other artwork that you are displaying alongside the piece. You wouldn’t want your art to look crowded or out of place in your home.

4. Lights please!

Lighting can be another important factor when hanging your artwork. Often clients worry that their home doesn’t have a lighting system like we have in the gallery; my opinion is that it doesn’t matter. With the natural light constantly changing throughout the day, and even throughout the year, you’re always going to see a different effect on your artwork. If you do have dimmers at home, great – get tweaking! If not, switch a lamp on in the corner of the room and marvel at what the dusky light has created.

5. Hanging Mechanisms

Hanging fittings are very much dependent on what type of wall you have, so make sure the one you purchase is going to be able to support the weight of the art. You need to be confident that once placed, it is not going to fall, ESPECIALLY if it is hanging above a bed! I would always recommend using at least two hooks to distribute the weight, and, by using two hooks once you have the picture level it will stay level. Be careful of using cheap hooks purchased from £1 shops and the like – they are cheap for a reason. We stock a wide variety of hanging fitting, and unlike many galleries we always supply fittings appropriate to the purchased piece of art free of charge. Every piece purchased from us also has a strong hanging wire already fitted – so no wasted time visiting the DIY store when you buy from us.

6. Think about layout: measure twice – drill once!

When it comes to working in a gallery, hanging the art has to be my favourite aspect of the job. I always feel it’s important to create a fluid movement between each piece, with each artist’s work moving naturally to the next. We will always do our very best to advise clients on where pieces should be hung. Above all – as a client once said to me – when you’re happy you have chosen the right spot for your art, measure twice and drill once!

Finally, we are one of the few galleries with an on site framing workshop so we can change frames on any picture to suit our customers décor, and we can also frame our customers own artwork, certificates or memorabilia without having to send it away to a remote site, which speeds up the process and halts the problem of things going lost in transit.

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