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Making The Most Out Of Art In Your Home

Want to make the best out of the art in your home? Read below to find out how

If ever there was a match made in heaven, it’s interior design and modern art. Like bacon and eggs, teenagers and binge drinking, and politics and corruption, never have there been two more compatible bedfellows. And with the propagation of DIY/interior design programmes and the burgeoning market for contemporary art, interest has been stoked up and exacerbated to the point it’s practically inescapable.

Of course, if you have a nice home you’ll want to decorate it with nice things, and homeowners are becoming increasingly savvy on how a few well-chosen pieces of art can practically transform a room from something habitable to a living space that’s truly luxurious. Such is the unquenchable artistic fervour of some that their homes have become mini art galleries.

But if you’re going to decorate your home with some of the finest artistic contemporary creations – and make it work – then you’ll need to give it some serious and considered thought.

Here are a few things to think about – and not a single one involves Kirsty Allsopp or Kevin McCloud.

DON’T GET TOO HIGH

One of the most common problems and, consequently, mistakes people make is to hang their art pieces too high. The general rule of thumb is to have the image at eye level. For living rooms, this should be different as people are usually sitting, so the art should be placed at a lower eye line. A good tip is to hang it one hand width above the sofa.

SIZE DOES MATTER

It’s kind of a no-brainer that having the right sized art pieces to fit the room is important. Scale is often a problem, and incorrectly sized and placed pieces can appear disproportionate with the rest of the room.

Good advice is to have artwork that’s at least two-thirds the size of the sofa or sideboard. (Roughly translated, a nine-foot sofa should have a six-foot wide piece of art above it.) By extension, small pieces are lost in a big room, while it’s important for big art works to have sufficient space to be admired.

HOW’S IT HANGING?

Putting up pictures can be something of a fine art itself – hanging, re-hanging and constant re-positioning being a real pain in the derriere.

To make things a bit less maddening, trace the size of each piece on tracing paper, cut them out, and Blu Tak them to the wall in the way you want them arranged. This way you can get to see how the final, organized pieces will look without it appearing as though Dick Tracy has machine-gunned your wall.

HOME GALLERY

Blank walls lends themselves very well to gallery-style arrangements. Clumping them all together won’t work well as it will make the room look overpowering and cluttered, so you’ll need to give the pieces breathing space. Placing the most eye-catching and prominent piece in the centre, working outwards and positioning the other pieces around it is also a great idea.

KITCHEN COLORS

Art often looks great in kitchens – plus it gives you something colorful and inspiring to look at while you’re waiting for the Spaghetti Bolognese to simmer. Crucially, don’t hang art pieces in places that will make them susceptible to damage from heat or water.

And how many times have we seen clichéd and arty shots of fruit and veg in many a modern kitchen? For a traditional kitchen try hanging a traditional piece in a traditional frame; with modern kitchens, stainless steel frames and bright colors work well.

BEDROOM ANTICS

Bedrooms are very personal spaces, so the ambience you want to create will vary greatly from person to person. Personal art – such as family photos, color or black and white – is always a safe and comfortable option.

ON THE LEVEL

Visually and aesthetically it’s unsightly when pictures have been slapped up with scant attention to co-ordination or levelling. A top tip is, rather than trying to make the tops and bottoms of the frames level, level the middles instead.

So before you go randomly nailing up your pieces of art, you might want to give these suggestions some consideration. With just a bit of forethought and prep, it’s easy to get the most out of decorating your home with art work.

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