How to Easily Hang Heavy Decor on Your Walls
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Ever wonder how people hang things on their walls so effortlessly? Check out this easy way to hang heavy decor and refresh your wall decor!
Hint: It’s not as effortless as it seems, but we will tell you how we’ve figured out how to make it a lot easier!
It’s true. I change my wall decor A LOT! Well, actually just one main, gallery wall. Since our home is so open, we don’t have a lot of big walls. The large gallery wall in our family room is one of my favorite places to decorate and I love switching it up for the season!
Throughout the rest of our home, there are quite a few very, very heavy pieces hanging on our walls. I am often asked how we get these big salvage pieces hung on the wall, so today’s blog post is all about trying to make that a little easier for you!
Anytime you are hanging big pieces on the wall, it’s going to require a little skill and a lot of patience. Oh, and some extra muscle too. Thankfully, my guy has all of that!
The extra effort is always worth it, though. I love how large architectural salvage pieces add so much character and interest to a space.
Tip: You can add a lot of old charm and character, even to a new build, by using architectural salvage details throughout your spaces!
I have the vision, but not the skill (or the muscle, for that matter. Some of these pieces are truly so heavy and definitely a two-person job!)
Fortunately, I married someone who loves me enough to patiently help me, even when I change my mind or want to switch things around! I’m going to turn the “how-to” portion of this post over to the brains and brawn behind how we hang heavy decor on our walls!
Robb: So Robyn & I have a long and complicated relationship with hanging things on the wall. Usually we meet in the middle for a “somewhat complicated” (rather than an impossible!) solution.
However, there is a solution that I have come to love & use it whenever I can. And it really is so easy, anyone can do it!
What Could Go Wrong?
Whenever we decide to hang something on the wall, there are at least four things to consider:
- No 1: Will it fall off the wall (NEVER good!)?
- No 2: Is it level?
- No 3: Is it centered left & right?
- No 4: How high is it?
For this next project, I’ll show you how to really only worry about Number Four: How High is it?
Has anyone ever hung a ledge with a “keyhole” in the back? Don’t even get me started on how frustrating that can be!
The way Robyn & I finally settled on to hang heavy items only needs four things:
- A drill
- A measuring tape
- A level (optional)
- A “French cleat”
I had no idea what a “French cleat” was, but fortunately, it’s not hard to use.
A French cleat usually comes with its own level, and is a two part system:
Part A screws into the wall, Part B screws into your piece and then rests on Part A.
See? Not hard at all!
Here is how we hung Robyn’s mirrors:
Up & Down
Remember: The main measurement with the french cleat is vertical, so I started there & marked a line on the wall where I wanted the top of the mirror to be. (Ignore the holes in the wall from what we just took down!)
Hanging the French Cleat
Once you’ve measured your height, screw in the wall portion of the cleat. The one I used has special screws that don’t even need anchors in drywall(!).
Note: Not all French cleats come with their own level. The one here does, which is super helpful!
With that done, attach part two of the cleat to the back of the mirror. This is the only part that requires a bit of patience. I always make sure I have a full sheet of scratch paper with random numbers to let everyone know my math was right (J/K!).
Once I was sure I measured correctly, I stood the mirror up & used a level at the top of the cleat to make sure I stayed straight.
Hanging the Mirror
That’s it. That’s the hard part.
Now just hang the mirror on the wall bracket, and you’re done!
Added Bonus: If you didn’t get the left-to-right measurement quite right, you can adjust your piece horizontally on the support. Life saver!
I hope you got a sense of how easy this system really is. If I missed a detail, or you have a quesiton, drop a comment below. I’m happy to help!
Last but not least, the French cleat system can hold a lot of weight. We also used them to support Robyn’s *Very* large mirror:
Robyn here again! Didn’t he do a great job? I absolutely love how these old doors, turned into mirrors, really elevate the character and style of this whole room. It may have taken me 4 1/2 years to find the right thing that I love for these walls, but they were worth the wait!
Thanks, Robb, for patiently helping my vision come to life!
Now for the rest of you, I hope this encourages you to be a little more bold with what you can hang on your walls. The worst that can happen is a little wall repair with caulk and paint, right?!
I can’t wait to hear what amazing pieces you find and if this how-to helped you get the job done with a little more ease!
Robb is a keeper for many reasons! ❤️
This is so helpful! I’m going to remember this for the next time I find something heavy I need to hang!
I did NOT know! Hubby certainly did not know! He just gives me “the look” when I ask and I’ve been trained to not even bring the heavy items in. This might change all that. Thanks to Robb!
I did not know this was available. My hubby devised a wooden cleat to hang our large, beautiful vintage window and I thought he was ingenious. Have had the window hanging in one spot or another in this home and our previous one.
Keep up the good work – love your posts.
This was wonderful Robb and Robyn! My hubby didn’t know about French cleat, is reading up on it now! Thanks very much! Your posts are always terrific!