DIY Decoration

The Petersburg Hanging

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Would you like to have your own vernissage in your home? Then let yourself be inspired by the St. Petersburg hanging and create an effective picture collage in your home!

Where did the Petersburg hanging come from?

Petersburg hanging red living room

This variant of the opulent picture hanging owes its name to the famous St. Petersburg Hermitage. In today’s museum, the former headquarters of the Russian tsars, 60,000 works of art are exhibited in over 350 halls. These are all particularly tightly strung together, sometimes up to the ceiling. This is how the term Petersburg Hanging came about. In the 18th century this composition of paintings was also found in many nobility salons, which is why it is often used Salon hanging called.

Originally, it was not the individual picture that counted for the St. But the most important collection of the Russian Art Museum shows that the Petersburg hanging is about much more than just showing your own wealth. It is the perfect opportunity to present the diversity of the most diverse works of art in a single unit.

Petersburg hanging black and white piano

What is the Petersburg hanging?

Petersburg hanging vintage photos

The loose suspension usually hides a consistent principle that runs through all the pictures. The conspicuous similarity of the frames, the same size of the pictures, similar color combinations or content-related similarities nevertheless create a certain tension in the pictures, which is merged into a unit by the special suspension. The difficulty behind the St. Petersburg hanging lies in presenting the individual similarities, even if they are shown in different sizes, shapes or frames, in a common unit.

7 tips for St. Petersburg hanging at home

Petersburg hanging red retro chair
  1. The right wall: the best are large, high white walls. Caution: in a small room, the Petersburg hanging can quickly appear overloaded!
  2. The clarity of the suspension can best be illustrated by a horizontal and a slightly offset vertical auxiliary line. Important: The closely lined up pictures do not hang too strictly on the lines, but also break the pattern, so that this certain graceful lightness is created in the in-house gallery.
  3. In order to perfect the charm of the Petersburg hanging, it is best to create a lower or upper line on which all works of art are oriented – this gives the opulent eye-catcher a carefree balance, calm and equilibrium so as not to appear chaotic.
  4. In principle, you have a free choice of the images that you use. As a rule of thumb, photos, images that support each other in terms of color or even take up a few color samples and describe the same style fit as well as several images with a passe-partout or oval frame – it’s all in the mix!
  5. Use frames that work well together. For example, if you are unsure, you can only choose white frames in various sizes. But colors, shapes, etc. can also be mixed – the main thing is that nothing looks noticeably inharmonious.
  6. One should not be too meticulously symmetrical about the Petersburg hanging. So don’t hang a painting in the middle that is framed with the same number of pictures on the left and right. This look should be fun and somehow look imperfectly perfect, random and detached from symmetrical specifications.
  7. Don’t be afraid to mix everything well. The great thing about it: You can combine (almost) everything together.

Why Petersburg Hanging?

The arrangement of several pictures, photographs or works of art with similarities such as color, frame, artist or subject always expresses diversity and a fascinating liveliness. The asymmetrical arrangement automatically creates interesting contrasts among each other, which lead the viewer to look for connections and to create their own stories from the relationships between the images.

Petersburg hanging sideboard colorful

The particularly opulent way of hanging in St. Petersburg transforms your home into an art museum like the famous Hermitage in no time at all. Light-heartedness, looseness and natural charm come together and turn the arranged and painstakingly combined chaos into an effective and stylish art treasure.


Credits: Living4Media / John M. Hall photographs, Living4Media / Olaf Szczepaniak, Living4Media / Winfried Heinze, Living4Media / Haus & Freizeit, gallery walls, Fotolia / Poligonchik (2)

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