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How to Hang Pictures Without Using Nails

Updated on September 6, 2013

Alternatives to Hang Pictures with Nail Holes or Residue

Everyone at one time has thought about how to hang a picture or photographs without nails and leaving nail holes. When redecorating a way to avoid expense is to keep the wall colours. When you hang pictures and photographs with nails it almost always results in a repaint and that costs money. If you can avoid nail holes you can rearrange furniture, buy a new lamp and changing some curtains may be all you need. When it comes to moving furniture the pictures often change too. You have some options here. You can move wall art from room to room or you can simply reposition what you have. With the furniture moved you need to keep a sense of balance and that can mean moving a lot of wall art.

When you move wall art you are generally faced with left over nail holes from hanging your art. If the nail holes were substantial this can mean using spackle or drywall compound to fill the nail holes and that can mean sanding to level the surface and repainting.

Repainting sounds so easy but I don’t think it is.The cost of high quality paint can exceed $60.00 per gallon and you can expect to paint the entire room because exact colour matches are still difficult despite the technology that paint companies advertise.Unless you are only buying dollar store brushes the accessories like, plastic sheeting, paint trays, good quality brushes and clean up products can cost more than double the cost of paint.In fact if a person said they repainted a room and spent $300 to do it these days doesn’t sound that unreasonable.Maybe you can hire a professional but the cost only goes up, not down.

I don’t know about you but I would rather spend my money on other parts of my redecorating project. An area carpet, a new lamp, or art might deserve my money over paint, especially when I am happy with the colour. Cleaning up the holes with sanding and then the painting afterwards is messy as well and if you are forced to repaint you are delaying your finished product by 2 days. One day for filling holes, drying compound and sanding and one day for paint are the minimum.

Stick it Product

Nail Hole Alternatives

The 3M Picture Hangar with Command Adhesive.These are plastic hangars that attach to your wall with adhesive that won’t damage the paint or leave a sticky residue.When you want to remove the hook from the wall you just pull down on the tab and the adhesive stretches and lifts from the wall.

  • Main Advantage: Marr free and residue, inexpensive in comparison to other systems
  • Main Drawback: Weight limitations. Weigh your art in the frame and see what it is before using one of these products.

Gallery Rail System

Cable and Track System: This is what you often see in offices and art galleries.There is a permanent track at the edge of the ceiling.

  • Main advantages are weight capacity and arguably the style. This system makes a statement about your commitment to art.
  • Disadvantages are the cost. To hang just one picture from the ceiling starts at about $200. It goes way up from there.

Screen Divider with Artwork in Small Frames: We’ve all walked through stores and saw a folding changing screen with photographs or art in 8X10 spaces

  • Main advantage: move it where ever you want in mere seconds. It has a neat and organised look.
  • Main disadvantages: It may not fit your décor. Picture sizes are quite limited. Artwork may not be placed where you want it due to decorating layout. This is starting to look a little bit like a cliché.

An Easel: An easel is a contemporary way to display artwork. Many people find this method quite aesthetically pleasing.

  • Main advantages: Stylish and easily movable
  • Main disadvantages: it takes up a good amount of space and people can trip over the legs

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© 2013 JanMaklak


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    • profile image

      Jenn Grover Photography 

      5 years ago

      Check out the Pottery Barn Wall Easel system, too!

    • profile image

      Service Central 

      5 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      Great article! Though I still wouldn't trust myself. No doubt the pictures I hang would hit the floor in no time!

    • Ged1962 profile image


      5 years ago from UK

      Great options that I normally forget about, I'm definitely going to use the easel, I do have one but at the moment it is locked away in my shed


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