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How to Hang Pictures in a Bedroom

The focal point of every bedroom is the bed and what’s hanging above it, so it’s important to pick your artwork carefully. You can create a grouping, or choose to feature one special piece as we show in these examples:
4 examples of artwork hung over a bed

What should I hang above my bed?
Hang things you love and bring you a sense of calm and serenity. Try abstract paintings, prints of nature or landscapes, black and white images or even nude art, for your eyes only.

Size It Right…
To create balance, your artwork (or grouping) should be at least 2/3 the length of the headboard. The shape doesn’t matter, it could be square, vertical, horizontal, round or oval as long as it’s the right size to counterbalance the headboard.

How High / How Low?
As a general rule, the bottom of your frame should hang 8” to 10” above the headboard. If you hang your artwork any higher it will look like it’s floating away from the headboard instead of being connected to it.

Tip: To make centering your artwork easier, mark both the center of your headboard and the middle of the bottom of the frame with a small piece of painter’s tape. Using Hang & Level, lift your frame approximately 8 – 10 inches from the headboard lining up the 2 pieces of tape. Works like a charm!

Use the right hardware…

  • Safety is key when hanging a heavy piece. Be sure it’s fastened securely to avoid an accident.
  • Use wall anchors or use 2 picture hooks or nails to secure your piece properly.
  • Place Anchor Points on the bottom corners of your frame to keep it in place and straight.

Avoid this common mistake!
example of a picture hanging too high above a bed and a picture hanging perfectly above a bed
Don’t center your picture between the top of the headboard and the ceiling. It’ll end up hanging too high and look as if it’s floating. It’s best to visually connect your artwork to the furniture below.

Liette's signature

Liette Tousignant

I’m passionate about picture hanging and decorating (and I’m also the Co-Founder of Under The Roof Decorating)


14 thoughts on “How to Hang Pictures in a Bedroom

  1. Bedderz

    Hi, I’m about to put a landscape pic above my bed, question is do I make sure it’s in the middle of the bed or the wall, as the bed is off centre, further to the right as the I have a wardrobe that means the bed and bedside cabinets have moved to the right by about a foot. I’m guessing I position the picture in line with the bed and not the wall??

  2. Liette Post author

    Hi Bedderz! You’re absolutely right! Art is an extension of your furniture so always center your wall décor with the furniture sitting below even if it is off-centered. In your case, hang your landscape picture so it’s centered with your headboard. Hope this helps!

  3. Alice Dressler

    Now I know the correct way to hang a piece of art over a headboard, but I have a question. The distance from the top of my headboard to the ceiling is 43″. Knowing this and going with the rule that the bottom of the painting should be placed about 8″ from the top of the headboard, what would be a good height for a painting (I do not want the top of the painting to be too close to the ceiling)? In other words, what is the maximum height the top of a painting can be from the ceiling without it looking too awkward? Thanks so much!

  4. Liette Post author

    Great question Alice! Keep in mind that hanging art 8″ from the headboard is only a guideline. If you have a low ceiling, it’s more important to hang your piece closer to the headboard than to the ceiling – otherwise, it will look awkward as you mentioned.

  5. Sharon Mitchell

    I have a four-poster bed and I’m currently shopping for a piece of art to hang over the headboard. I’ve read the general rules about it needing to be 2/3 the width of the headboard and to “ground” the artwork close to the headboard. The particular piece I have in mind would extend about12-14 inches above the height of the posts. I do have high ceilings, so the piece would be closer to the bed than the ceiling. Are there any rules of thumb to follow in this area?

  6. Liette Post author

    Hi Sharon! Unfortunately there’s no rule of thumb to follow to answer your question. I don’t know how tall your bed posts are but considering that you have high ceilings hanging a piece of art that extends over the posts will look great. It will visually counter-balance the size of the bed and will create a great focal point for your bedroom. As you mentioned, “ground” your piece to the headboard to make sure it’s connected to it versus floating away from it. I hope this helps.

  7. Wanda Mallard

    I have a framed canvas that I want to hang over my bed. The top of my headboard is 47″ from the ceiling. The picture I want to hang is 29″ tall and approximately 40″ long. S the picture too big

  8. Liette Post author

    Hi Wanda! Your canvas is not too big to hang above your headboard. Hang it so its bottom hangs approximately 6″ away from the top of the headboard, you’ll still have 12″ of wall space between the ceiling and top of your artwork. It’s always best to have your artwork anchored closer to furniture than to the ceiling. I hope this helps. I’d love to see a picture once your canvas is up.

  9. Wanda Mallard

    I hung the picture and it looks good. Not sure how I can attach a picture for you to view.

  10. Liette Post author

    Hi Wanda – check your mail, I sent you an email address for you to send your picture to me. I can’t wait to see it, I’m sure it looks great.

  11. Helen Prickett

    Thanks for advice. Love hanging pictures, but never sure where to put them- This will help tremendously…………….

  12. Kelly

    I recently moved into a new home and would like to hang a picture I have in our livingroom. However I am not sure where to hang this picture. If I send you a photo of the room and picture could you provide me a little advice?

  13. Liette Post author

    Kelly – I’d be happy to help you. Send your picture to [email protected] and congrats on your new home.

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