How to pick art that's the right size for your space

Deciding what size artwork you need for a specific space can be tricky. Art can pull together a room beautifully, but if the size isn't right, something will feel a little off. Too big and your space can feel overcrowded and too small your room can look incomplete. But, don’t worry! Here are a few tried and true tricks to make sure you feel confident choosing and hanging your art.
photo by Kierstin Smyth Design
photo by Kierstin Smyth Design (private commission)

The Golden Rule

Art should take up 2/3 to 3/4 of your wall space. Measure the height and width of your wall and then multiply them by both .66 and .75 to find your minimum and maximum. You can use the same calculation to find the range of sizes of art to best fit above a piece of furniture. 
For example, if your credenza is 5 feet wide, multiply 5 by .66 and .75. In this case, a piece of art between 3.3 feet and 3.75 feet wide will look great above the credenza. Remember - you can combine multiple pieces to achieve the right size!

A reference guide:

 Furniture Piece  Art Size
72" sofa 48-54" wide
84" sofa 56-66" wide
96" sofa 36-72" wide
Twin Bed 25-30" wide
Full Bed 35-41" wide
Queen Bed 40-45" wide
King Bed 50-57" wide
48" table 32-36" wide
60" table 40-48" wide
78" table 52-59" wide

Visualize It

An easy trick to help visualize the size of a piece of art in a room is to tape it out. Outlining the dimensions of different options on your wall will help you understand what will look best. Another great way to do this is by cutting out the dimension of your potential art piece from Kraft paper and taping it to the wall. This is especially handy if you’re working on a gallery wall or hanging multiple pieces together.
Heart of Gold and Rise I, 24x36 inch prints
Heart of Gold and Rise I, 24x36 inch prints

A Few More Tips:

- Bigger is better. Choosing a piece of wall art that is on the slightly larger side of what you think will be appropriate for a wall is better than it being too small which makes the room feel barren.
- A general rule is that the centre of the piece should be about 58" high
- The bottom of the piece should hang 6-12" above the closest piece of furniture. 
      Happy Hanging! 

      1 comment

      • Alexis

        So many questions answered…. what a great reference guide


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