When it comes to hanging unframed art prints, it can be a bit of a challenge. As someone who loved to decorate my home when I did not have much of a budget for framing, I’ve had my fair share of struggles when it comes to displaying unframed art. So how do you hang unframed art prints if you’re on a budget and can’t afford a frame?
They say that necessity is the mother of invention so with a little bit of creativity and some simple techniques, I found that it’s possible to showcase unframed art prints in a way that looks both polished and professional.
One of the easiest ways to hang unframed art prints is to use clips. Metal binder clips or bulldog clips work well for smaller prints, while larger prints might require heavier-duty clips. Simply clip the top edge of the print to a length of twine or ribbon, and hang the twine from a nail or hook on the wall. This method works particularly well for prints that have a bit of weight to them, as the clip will hold the print securely in place.
This option might not provide the level of professionalism you might expect and some of the ones I will go into can even cause damage to the print but you wanted to know how do you hang unframed prints so the options are not going to be professional.
In this article, I will explore some easy and inexpensive ways to hang unframed art prints. So let’s go!
16 Ways to Hang Unframed Art Prints
Before you start trying these methods to hang unframed art prints, you should also consider the thickness/weight of the art print’s paper as you do not want to risk ripping or tearing the art print because you chose to weigh it down or fix it with something that was too heavy or too strong.
Test each one on a sample piece of paper that is roughly the same weight and thickness as the art print’s paper.
Use Acid-Free Tape
Avoid using regular tape or glue as they can damage the print over time. Instead, use acid-free tape, which is specially designed for artwork and won’t cause any harm to the print. It is also easily removable and doesn’t leave any residue.
Use Adhesive Putty
Adhesive putty is another great option for hanging unframed art prints. It is a soft, moldable material that can be easily removed and won’t damage the print and it’s also reusable. This makes it a great choice for those who like to change up their wall decor on a regular basis. I use this method the most.
Use Magnetic Hangers
Magnetic hangers are a great way to hang unframed art prints without causing any damage to the print. Magnetic hangers work by using strong magnets to hold the print in place. They are easy to install and remove.
Use a Picture Rail
If you have multiple unframed art prints that you want to hang, a great option is the use of a picture rail. A picture rail is a strip of molding that is installed along the top of a wall. You can then use hooks and cords to hang your prints. These can be easily adjusted to achieve the right height and spacing.
Use Binder Clips
Binder clips are a simple and inexpensive way to hang unframed art prints. Just clip the top edge of the print to the wall using the binder clip and you’re done. It’s quick, easy, and won’t damage the art print.
Use Suction Cups
Suction cups are another option for hanging unframed art prints. They work by creating a vacuum seal between the suction cup and the wall, you then run a wire between the two and use a clip to hold the print in place. They are easy to install and remove and won’t damage the print.
Create a Gallery Wall
A gallery wall is a great way to display multiple unframed art prints. You can mix and match different sizes and styles of prints to create a personalized display. Use a combination of the hanging methods mentioned above to create your desired gallery wall.
Use Tension Rods
Tension rods are another option for hanging unframed art prints. They work by creating tension between two walls, holding the print in place. They are easy to install and remove and won’t damage the art print. Not that practical in real life but worth a shot.
Use Decorative Clips
Decorative clips are a stylish way to hang unframed art prints. They come in a variety of designs and can add a unique look to your decor. Just clip the top edge of the art print to the wall using the decorative clip and you’re done. It’s quick, easy, and won’t damage the print.
Use Curtain Rods
If you have a long unframed art print, you can use a curtain rod. Install the curtain rod above the print, and use hooks and cords to hang it. This method is great for larger prints that might be too heavy for other hanging methods. This method is similar to the tension rods.
Use Clothespins and String
Clothespins and string are an inexpensive and creative way to hang unframed art prints. Simply attach the clothespins to the top edge of the print, and then tie the string to each clothespin. You can then hang the print from a hook or nail on the wall.
Create a DIY Frame
If you’re feeling crafty, you can create a DIY frame for your unframed art print. There are many tutorials available online that will show you how to make a simple frame using materials like wood or cardboard. This is a great option for those who want to add a personal touch to their wall decor.
Use a Display Easel
A display easel is a great option for some types of unframed art prints. Simply place the print on the easel, clip to the top and pull it up until it is at the desired height. This method is great for displaying prints from the floor.
Use Velcro Strips
Velcro strips are another option for hanging unframed art prints. They work by using a hook-and-loop system to hold the print in place. They are easy to install and remove, and won’t damage the print.
Use a Hanging Wire
If your unframed art print has a wire attached to the back, you can use this to hang it. Simply attach the wire to a hook or nail on the wall, and you’re done. This method is great for larger prints that might be too heavy for other hanging methods.
Use a Floating Frame
A floating frame is a great option for those who want to give their unframed art print a more finished look. A floating frame consists of two pieces of glass or acrylic that sandwich the print, creating the illusion that it is floating within the frame.
Weighing down the print bottom edge
Now you may have figured out or realized that some of these technique that we discussed to hang unframed prints need the bottom edge of the art print to be weighted down.
Weighting down the art print is meant to keep it from curling or moving around. Here are a few cheap techniques that you can use to achieve this:
Use Washi Tape
Washi tape is a type of decorative masking tape that is easy to find and affordable. Simply fold a piece of washi tape in half, sticky side out, and place it on the bottom corners of the print. This will help keep the print in place without causing any damage.
Use Binder Clips
Binder clips can be used not only to hang the top edge of the print, but also to weigh down the bottom edge. Simply clip the bottom corners of the print with a binder clip, and the weight of the clip will keep the print in place.
If you don’t have any binder clips or other materials on hand, you can use pennies as weights. Simply tape a penny to each of the bottom corners of the print using a small piece of masking tape or double-sided tape.
Use Paper Clips
Another option is to use paper clips as weights. Simply attach a paper clip to each of the bottom corners of the print, and the weight of the paper clips will keep the print in place.
I know it sounds crazy but if you have some small clean rocks or pebbles available, you can use these as weights to keep the bottom edge of the print from curling. Simply place a rock or pebble on each of the bottom corners of the print fixing them with adhesive putty.
Let’s Get Hanging With the Right Tools
I always start by measuring the space where I want to hang my unframed art print. This helps me determine the size of the print I need to order and where exactly to hang it. I use a measuring tape to measure the height and width of the wall space, and then I measure the dimensions of the art print to ensure it will fit perfectly.
Once I have my art print, I need to hang it on the wall. A hammer is the perfect tool for this job. I use a hammer to drive nails into the wall at the exact spot where I want to hang the print. A hammer is also useful for removing any old nails or hooks that may be in the wall.
Choosing the right nail is crucial when hanging an unframed art print. I always use a nail that is strong enough to hold the weight of the print, but not too long that it will damage the wall or go through the other side.
I prefer to use picture hanging nails or small finishing nails, as they are strong and won’t damage the wall.
Overall, having the right tools is essential when hanging unframed art prints. With a measuring tape, hammer, and nails, you can easily hang your art print and enjoy it for years to come.
Prepare Your Wall
Before hanging your unframed art prints, it’s important to prepare your wall properly. This will ensure that your art stays securely in place and looks great. Here are a few steps to follow:
Clean the Wall
The first step is to clean the wall where you want to hang your art. Dust and dirt can prevent the adhesive from sticking properly, so use a damp cloth to wipe down the area. If the wall is a bit dirty, you might need to use a mild soap and water solution.
Mark the Spot
Next, use a pencil to mark the spot where you want to hang your art. Measure the height and width of your art and use these measurements to determine the ideal placement. You can also use a level to ensure that your art is straight.
Find the Studs
It’s important to hang your art on a stud, as this will provide the most secure hold. You can use a stud finder to locate the studs in your wall. Once you’ve found a stud, mark the center with a pencil. If your art is wider than the distance between two studs, you can use wall anchors to provide additional support.
By taking these steps to prepare your wall, you’ll be able to hang your unframed art prints with confidence. In the next section, I’ll share some tips for choosing the right hanging method.
Hang Your Art Prints
So, you’ve got some unframed art prints you want to hang up on your walls but you’re not sure how to do it. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Here are some tips and tricks to help you hang your art prints like a pro.
Center Your Artwork
The first thing you want to do is find the center of your wall. Measure the width of your wall and divide it by two. This is where you want to hang your artwork. Use a pencil to mark the spot.
Next, measure the width of your artwork and divide it by two. This will give you the center point of your artwork. Use a pencil to mark this spot on the back of your artwork.
Align the center point of your artwork with the center point on your wall and hang it up. Use a level to make sure it’s straight.
Use Two Hooks for Larger Art Prints
If you have a larger art print, it’s a good idea to use two hooks instead of one. This will help distribute the weight of the artwork evenly and prevent it from sagging or falling off the wall.
Measure the width of your artwork and divide it by three. This will give you the distance between the two hooks. Use a pencil to mark the spots where you want to place the hooks.
Hang your artwork on the hooks and adjust as necessary to make sure it’s level.
Level Your Artwork
It’s important to make sure your artwork is level. Use a level to check that it’s straight before you start hanging it up.
If you’re having trouble getting your artwork level, try using a piece of cardboard or a small block of wood as a spacer. Place it at the bottom of your artwork to help level it out.
Another trick is to use a piece of tape to mark the spot where you want to hang your artwork. This will help you make sure it’s level before you start drilling holes in your wall.
With these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to hang your unframed art prints like a pro. Just remember to take your time and be patient. It might take some trial and error to get it just right, but the end result will be worth it, trust me.
How do you hang unframed art prints? – Wrap up!
When it comes to hanging unframed art prints, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Each print is unique and requires a different approach, depending on its size, weight, and material.
Like I mentioned earlier, I have discovered a few general tips that can be helpful when hanging unframed art prints and out of the 16 I discussed the following were the easiest to implement on a budget:
- Use binder clips to hang lightweight prints
- Use metal hinge clips to hold large canvas prints
- Use picture hanging strips for prints that are not too heavy
- Use wire and hooks for prints that have a hanging wire attached to them
Remember to always factor in the weight and size of your print before deciding on a hanging method. It is also important to make sure that your hanging method is secure and will not damage your print or your walls. I hope you found “How do you hang unframed art prints” a valuable and useful article. Let me know via the Contact Us page if you have additional methods you’d like me to add.
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Joseph Colella (Joe Colella) is an Editor and Writer at WastedTalentInc. As a frustrated artist with over 40 years experience making art (who moonlights as a certified Business Analyst with over 20 years of experience in tech). While Joseph holds a Diploma in Information Technology, in true wasted talent fashion he spent years applying for various Art degrees; from the Accademia di Belle Arti (Napoli), to failing to get into the Bachelor of Arts (Fine Arts) at the University of Western Sydney. While he jokes about his failures at gaining formal art qualifications, as a self-taught artist he has had a fruitful career in business, technology and the arts. His goal is to attend the Julian Ashton School of Art at The Rocks Sydney when he retires from full time work. Joseph’s art has been sold to private collectors all over the world from the USA, Europe and Australasia. He is a trusted source for reliable art advice and tutorials to copyright/fair use advice and is committed to helping his readers make informed decisions about making them a better artist.
He also loves all things watches (ok it’s an addiction) so show him some love and visit his other website https://expertdivewatch.com