How to hang art above a bed
12 July, 2022

If trying to figure out how to hang art above a bed has been driving you crazy, we hope to give you some answers and help to achieve the perfect look.

Choosing a style

As a rule, it’s wise to hang vibrant, bold or eye-catching art above the headboard of your bed. Then, add calmer art across from your bed or on an adjacent wall if you wish to.

The reason is that when you are lying in your bed you cannot see the bold artwork above you. Instead, you lie down and look across from you at something calmer, which can help you sleep better at night. Louder, graphic art is often not easy on the eye, so it’s best to hang it where you can’t see it as you drift off.

how to hang art above a be

Match the frame colour to your furniture

The frame used for your art should fit in with other elements in your bedroom such as a bedside table, chest of drawers or lamp. This will create a sense of harmony.

Distance to put between the headboard and the artwork

An easy mistake to make is to hang the art too close to the headboard which will make it feel wedged in. You need at least 20 cm between the top of the headboard and the bottom of the artwork to avoid it looking cramped.

how to hang art above a be

Breathing room between top of art and ceiling

The distance between the top of the artwork and the ceiling or cornice is also very important. Here again, you want at least 20 cm between the artwork and the top.

If you have high ceilings, you can still leave a 20cm space at the bottom of the art and have a much larger space from the top of the art to the ceiling. Always go closer to the bed than the ceiling.

The art should be narrower than the width of the bedhead

According to the experts, the width of the artwork should never be wider than your headboard.
You want the edge of the art to sit either in line with the width of the headboard or ideally step in from it.

In an ideal world, the art would step in from the bed by about 20cm.

Artwork orientation – portrait, landscape or square?

A single square artwork on its own is never going to be successful because there will be too much room on either side of it. A single portrait orientation artwork will also look strange and is not recommended.
Ideally, you want one landscape orientation artwork hung above the bed, or two squares side by side. In some instances, two landscape or portrait artworks will also work

how to hang art above a be

One artwork, two artworks, or more?

The number of artworks you should hang above a bed can vary, depending on how you want the room to look and feel.

I suggest either one landscape artwork above the bed or two square artworks of the same size side-by-side. You can hang two landscape artworks side-by-side if the headboard is extra wide.

Two portrait artworks side-by-side can sometimes work if the wall the bed is on is narrow or the ceiling high, but it’s not my preferred method. It just won’t ever look as good as one landscape artwork, or two squares next to one another.

how to hang art above a be


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After 18 years in the IT industry, Doreen decided to surround herself on a daily basis by photography that she loves which led to the establishment of The Cow Artworks in 2004. In March 2006 she opened the gallery in Parkhurst and has thrived in this beautiful space. Her passion for travel affords her the opportunity to take photographs, particularly candid shots of street scenes, graffiti and architecture.