With last week's two posts on the curtain updates in my living room and foyer,…
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The other week I showed you my newest furniture makeover, a silver dresser that I had glazed, sanded and shined up with some metallic paint. In the photos of the dresser you might have noticed some new photos I hung up on the wall. The first wedding pictures I had printed and displayed ~ a year and a half later I’m so ashamed! But I got these frames at an estate sale and knew they would be prefect for my little corner.
Our house was built in 1900 and most of our walls are plaster. The hanging process is just a little bit different than drywall so I take some special steps to get items up and displayed.
It’s not hard at all, here is a step-by-step how to hang items on plaster walls.
First up, your supplies:
- Painters tape
- Screws with anchors – this is the key, you don’t use nails
- Measuring tape
- Drill bits
If you are hanging two or more items a level helps too.
Oh and one more important item ~ a picture of you looking fabulous!
This was actually a photo from our “first look” on our wedding day. Hubs and I had our pictures taken before the ceremony because of the schedule – oh the scandal! It was a lot less nerve racking to do that let me tell you. This was when we met up in the salon at the hotel. I walked it and so this is the first time he sees me and we’re all looking at my dress, kind of like “this is it!” and so I said, “wait until you see the back” because it was this gorgeous lace up and I turned around and put my hand on my hip.
Little did I know at the time my photographer captured the moment perfectly, because even though you can’t see it in the photo, my husband has his eyebrows raised and is looking directly at my rear end all “huh hhhuuh uhh!” You know. Yea. In fact most of the groomsmen were! Hysterical. Makes good conversation art for your walls.
Back to the tutorial!
Here’s how to hang items on plaster walls.
1. Measure the spot on the wall where the screw will go and mark an X.
2. With your painter’s tape, rip off a piece and poke a hole in the middle of it with the pencil.
Put the hole over the X that you’ve marked on the wall.
3. Next, make a little “shelf” of the wide painters tape with the sticky side up to catch the plaster that will come out of the wall when you drill. This is not totally necessary, but helpful for clean up.
4. Now come the muscles. What you want to do is select the drill bit that it says to use on the side of the package of screws and anchors. These ones that I use regularly take a 3/16 drill bit.
Get it in your drill and go for it. The drill will stop once it is all the way through the plaster, you’ll feel it. If it seems harder to go through, you probably hit some lath which is OK. Make sure the hole is the size of the bit, not too big.
This is where your tape “shelf” comes in handy.
5. Then you remove the tape and hammer in your anchor. This can be tricky. If you didn’t drill the hole big enough, the plastic anchor will bend, you’ll see it happen and you don’t want that. You want the anchor to fit snugly in the hole and be flush with the wall like this.
6. Then you drill the screw into the anchor, changing your drill bit of course or you can just use a screwdriver with some muscle. I leave mine a little bit away from the wall so the wire from the picture will fit on it.
7. Then you can carefully fold up your little tape shelf to collect all the plaster dust and simply throw it away. No floor to vacuum.
And then you hang your picture up by the wire on the back of it on the screw. This will also work if your photo/art doesn’t have a wire but another type of hanger on the back, but wire is preferred since it works so well with the screws. Some of the other hangers might not fit on the screw, but see what works for you.
If you hang two photos, make sure to level the line where they are hung so they are even.
Now you know the secret, anchors and screws, not nails. Nails will chip away the plaster and you’ll end up with a large hole in the wall where nothing will be able to be hung. Of course you can try this with other size screws, but this size pretty much works for anything I need to hang.
I hope this helps you in your old house decorating or perhaps new house decorating with heavy objects.
Do you have any plaster wall tips? Do share!
See all of my old house tips and tricks and my how to and home improvement project here.
Sharing with Tutorials and Tips Tuesday at Home Stories A to Z.