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User Tips: Preventing Leaning, Tilting, Floating

Simple Techniques for Art Hanging System Use

by Debbi Silverman, Strategic Accounts Manager

We recently visited Butler Home Products, a large manufacturer of home cleaning products and a new user of a Gallery System GalleryOne stainless steel cable art hanging system. The staff at Butler loved the flexibility and convenience of the system, but they had a few questions about maximizing the effectiveness of their display: an inviting salon-style presentation of current product images, press coverage, vintage ads, historic engineering drawings and other memorabilia at their new company headquarters.

Before-Office Art Hanging System Installation

Art hanging system and display before adjustments. See it larger. Photo: Debbi Silverman

As you can see in the “Before” image, the framed pieces varied in size and weight, as well as framing materials; there was also variation in the hanging wires attached to the frames. As a result, some of the images leaned away from the wall, some tilted left or right, and the smaller pictures in the middle appeared to float away from the wall.

We employed several simple tactics to solve these issues without rearranging the carefully chosen display layout, which included many vertical columns of images hung on single hangers.

The ability to conveniently create columns and other groupings is one of the great strengths of picture hanging systems like Gallery System, but when items of differing size and weight need to share hangers, the results are almost always better if you pair the hangers rather than use just one. So our first step was to use two cable hangers and pairs of hooks for every column of pictures. This solved the tilting issue, by ensuring that adjustments to one item would not affect others on the same hangers.

Office Art Hanging System After Adjustment

Art display after adjustments - note the use of paired hangers. See it larger. Photo: Debbi Silverman

Next, we added small pieces of Velcro hook-and-loop material to the back of each frame at the top edge, and sandwiched the stainless steel cable hanger material between the two layers. This keeps the cables snug to the artworks, preventing them from leaning away from the wall (full instructions below). 

Then, for the smallest/lightest pictures (seen in the middle of the arrangement), we added Velcro at the bottom edge of the frame as well as the top. This holds the pictures in place and prevents the column from floating freely. 

Finally, in a few cases, there was some excess stainless steel cable hanging below the lowest piece of artwork. We coiled up the excess cable, wrapped the end around itself to keep it tight (we could also have used a cable tie), and placed the coils on the lowermost hook, safely hidden behind the artwork on that hook.  This gave the display a neater, more polished finish, and also helped diminish the leaning problem.

Butler is very excited to give customers, suppliers and other visitors this look at its present and its heritage – and when new images become available it will be easy to add to and rearrange the display.

Instructions for the “Velcro fix”: Rolls of self-adhesive Velcro hook-and-loop fastener can be purchased at hardware, home goods and sewing stores. Rolls of Velcro have two opposing sides. Cut pieces about an inch long of both sides of the Velcro. Remove the backing from the loop (soft) side and affix it at the upper edge of the back of the frame. It should be positioned away from the artwork itself, and centered if using one hanger or symmetrically if using dual hangers. Leave the backing on the other (hook) piece of the Velcro, so nothing sticky will be facing the wall, and sandwich the clear tape or cable between the two pieces of the Velcro.