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How to Hang Canvas Panels

how to hang canvas panels
So, you just got those canvas panel paintings that you have been waiting months for, and you already picked the spot to hang them. Now, the problem is that you have no idea how to hang them. Luckily, this article is now about how to hang canvas panels at the exact place that you want them.

You have probably experienced the frustration of hammering a nail on the wall, only to find out later that when you hang the frame, it is not in the right place. Here is a quick and easy guide on how to hang canvas panels on the wall, centered and at the position where you intended them to be.

Using Nails

The traditional way to learn how to hang canvas panels is to hammer a nail in the wall. You can hang your pictures precisely by using a spirit level and measuring tape. This is important if you are hanging several canvas panels.

  • What to Prepare:
  • Pencil
  • Measuring tape
  • Spirit level
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Protective padding

Detailed Steps:

Step 1 – Get the right measurements

If you are only hanging one canvas, you don’t have to measure where you will be placing the nail. You can just eyeball it. However, ensure that it is at eye level. If you are hanging several identical-sized canvas panels, you have to use the measuring tape.

  1. Position the first frame roughly where you want it – Place the level on top to ensure that it is straight. After that, use the pencil to place a mark on the wall on top of the canvas where you can find the D-ring or sawtooth hanger.
  2. Now measure the distance between the top of the canvas to the edge of the D-ring – Put a mark on the wall below the one you made earlier, too. This is where you will be hammering the first nail.
  3. To figure out where you will be hammering the next nail, measure the width of the canvas and add to that the distance between frames that you like – If you want them to be close, add maybe two inches to the width of the frame. This is the distance between the nails.
  4. Have a helper hold the end of the tape at the first nail point, and gradually pull on the tape measure until you reach the right distance – Use the spirit level to ensure that the tape measure is level. After that, put a mark on the distance you computed earlier.
  5. Repeat steps 3 to 4 depending on the number of frames you will be hanging.

Step 2 – Hammer the nails

Now that you’ve marked where the nails need to be, you can proceed to hammer the nails into the wall. You can do that by first positioning the nail over the mark. Tap on it gently using the hammer until you are able to embed it securely in the wall.

Remove your hand that is holding the nail in place. Give the nail a couple of stronger whacks. Stop hammering when the nail is halfway into the wall.

If you are dealing with concrete walls, and you don’t want to risk chipping off the plaster, you can use screws instead of nails.

  • Take a hand drill and install a concrete drill bit that is roughly the same size as the screw, but a bit bigger.
  • Proceed to drill on the marks you did earlier.
  • Put a wall plug/tox into the hole and then proceed to install the screw. Make sure to stop when the screw is halfway in the wall.

Step 3 – Hang the frames

You’ve now come to the fun part. After you’ve hung the canvases, step back and admire your handiwork. Adjust the canvases as you see fit.

  1. Place the padded frame protectors on the corners of the canvas – These are usually adhesive-backed so you just need to peel off the backing and stick them on the corners. These will prevent the canvas from scratching the wall.
  2. Hang the frames using the D-hook or sawtooth hanger at the back of the canvas.
  3. Place the level on top of the canvas and adjust the position of the canvas until it is perfectly straight.
  4. Do the same with the other canvases if there are any.

how to hang a flat canvas board

Using Mounting Tape

If you are living in an apartment, and you don’t want to risk your deposit by drilling or hammering nails into the wall, you can use foam double-sided tape. Aside from being easier, you will not also have a hard time removing the residue left by the adhesive later.

Here’s what you ought to do when using the mounting tape:

Step 1 – Measure

Position the frame roughly where you want it to be. Place a level on top to make sure that it is straight.

Put marks on the walls where the corners of the frame are using the pencil. This will make it easier for you to position the canvas later.

Step 2 – Apply the Mounting Tape

You can accomplish this with the help of the following steps:

  1. Put strips of foam mounting tape on all sides at the back of the canvas – You can go all out and cover the edges with mounting tape, but half the lengths of the width and height of the frame should be enough.
  2. Remove the backing paper to expose the adhesive.
  3. Carefully place the bottom corners first on the marks on the wall. Push the canvas on the wall slowly to ensure that you were able to position it in between the marks you placed earlier.
  4. Press on the edges firmly to make sure the canvas is stuck securely on the wall.

If you will be hanging more than one frame, measure the same distance from two corners and put marks. These are where you will be placing the corners of the other frame.

Helpful Tips

  • Use a heat gun or dryer to loosen the adhesive – Both can help in removing foam mounting tape without leaving any residue on the wall. After that, use a plastic scraper to remove it from the wall.
  • If you are driving a nail into a concrete wall, place the nail perpendicular to the surface of the wall – Hit it right at the center with a hammer. Don’t angle the nail as it will cause you to chip the plaster of the wall.
  • If you will be using nails to hang your canvases, choose a size that will suit the size of the frame and its weight – For small canvases, like 8” x 10” size, you can use small nails (1” to 1-1/2”), and then medium nails (2” to 2-1/2”) for larger canvases, like 16” x 16” and 20” x 30” sizes.


When you know how to hang canvas panels properly, an entire world of design possibilities will open to you. Now, you can hang canvases with high precision and in any configuration that you want.

How to hang a flat canvas board might seem simple, but if you don’t know how to hang picture frames properly, you’ll end up with a wall full of holes. Now, you can make your living room look like a professional art gallery, and you can do so without too much fuss.

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