Decorating your Green Home: Adorning Walls

Adorning Your "Green" Walls

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Pictures and wall accessories make your new green walls a home.

There are two fundamental points to remember when hanging art:

1. A large picture should not to be any larger than the furniture or furniture grouping beneath it.

2. A small picture should not be hung by itself on a large wall.


Most people hang pictures too high.

The basic rule for positioning a picture: Hang it so that the eye of the viewer looks into the main area of interest. In living and dining areas, the viewer is usually seated. In hallways and foyers, the viewer is standing.

A small, low-ceiling room will seem larger if you hang pictures about 4 inches lower than the average eye level. This works best when the furniture stands away from the wall and you aren’t visually measuring the picture placement against a sofa or a chest.


Pictures, like people, need not always be single. Cluster several pictures for an interesting arrangement. A random assortment of pictures will work well together if they share a predominant color: all gray tones or all black and white photographs.

Another way to unify a collection is to use identical mats and/or frames. A blank wall can become a focus of interest if you hang small objects with interesting silhouettes, or colors. For example, a collection of small masks or locks and keys.

Vertical arrangements of pictures will make a room seem higher, just as horizontal ones will make an area appear wider.

To create an attractive picture arrangement for a large wall area, cut paper templates the same size as the pictures you plan to hang. Move the templates around on the wall, attaching them with masking tape, until you arrive at a pleasing composition. Mark the pictures’ positions lightly with a pencil.


Hardware stores and frame shops sell picture hooks in packages that indicate the maximum weight that each hook will hold. So…before hanging a picture or mirror, find out its weight. If it weighs less than five pounds, simply nail on a sawtooth hanger. If the picture or mirror weighs more than five pounds, attach two screw eyes and braided picture wire. If the frame is extra-heavy, put two screw eyes on each side and use two picture hooks. Nail the hooks into the studs.


Mirrors are more than a wall hanging. They:

  • Widen and heighten space.

  • Intensify lighting.

  • Reflect lighting.

  • Give off a shine that complements contemporary interiors.

  • Mask all wall defects.

  • Make a bedroom or any other room seem sensual.

Position a mirror so that a person of average height looks directly into it. However, if you plan to use the mirror primarily for decorative effect–for example, over a mantel–its height is less critical.

Other hints for mirror uses:

1. Mirrors are an excellent backdrop for collections; they show off collections beautifully.

2. Make a small room look twice its size by mirroring an entire wall.

3. For the best effect, place your furniture, such as a dining table, directly against the mirrored wall. This way, your table or other furniture will look twice as long.


Artwork is expensive. Take the time and money to mat and frame it properly, or go to a professional.

Rules of thumb: A fragile-looking picture needs a frame about 1/2 inch wide, a medium picture can use a frame up to two inches wide. A large, strong picture needs a bold, wider frame.


Instead of hanging a painting on a wall, display it on an easel. It’s a clever way of filling a corner. It also make a painting or print gain importance, even look like a masterpiece.

Green Building andRemodeling

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