How to Hang Wall Sconces

House & Home

February 3, 2021

Back in September my pal Ashley and I packed our bags and drove about five hours south to Springfield Ohio for the big antique extravaganza. Honestly it was one of the only flea markets of the year thanks to covid and we spent the entire weekend from sun up to sun down shopping the fields and fields of antiques and I came home with many treasures including these brass wall sconces. I took down the gallery wall in this room a while ago and parted with some of the pieces from it. I was ready for something simpler and cleaner. I found this large antique painting from one Megillicuti, one of my favorite vendors at warehouse 55 in aurora, IL. Melissa had literally pulled this painting from the back of her truck when I claimed it as mine. It is a massive oil on canvas and fit perfectly from where the gallery wall once hung.

Among the other treasures I cam home with from the Springfield show, my favorites are the two brass wall sconces and the large glass dome that came from a chemistry classroom in Ohio (pictured far right). I found both of these treasures laying randomly on junk tables and placed my hands on them as fast as I could in as some sort of possession and claim. Ashley knows that when I get that look in my eye and briskness in my walk that I’ve spotted something I have to have. We took wagon after wagon of treasures back to the truck and loaded it to the ceiling of the cab.

Vintage Dining Room Brass Sconces

When I returned home we unloaded the truck and these antique brass wall sconces pretty much stayed in the barn until I was ready to tackle the complex math project of hanging them. What is it about putting holes in the walls that make me so nervous? Oh yea, these old farmhouse walls are plaster. That’s why. I got the tape measure out and did three different graphs before finally deciding where to put the holes and hang the wall sconces.

How to hang wall sconces.

  1. Find your hanger. Locate the point on the back of the sconce where the nail is going to hook in. These had a lip right in the middle of the circle that made it easy to measure.
  2. Hang your picture or art piece first. Hanging the largest peice first will give you a focal point to work off from. The picture is hung dead center of the entry to the kitchen and the shelf of iron stone.
  3. Find your center based off the focal point. This painting is 37 inches tall and hung 8 inches from the base of the trim.  The space in between the painting and the side wall was 20 inches on each side. This gave me the correct measurement for my sconce’s nail holes. The hole was going to be put 10 inches from the side wall trim (20/2=10) and the height for the nail was going to be 26.5 inches from the bottom trim. ((37/2) + 8 inches)) The entire time I was doing this I could just see my highschool math teacher chuckling away. Math was never my strength, more of a theater gal.
  4. X marks the spot, drive that nail in! Make sure you are using a heavy duty nail based on the weight of your sconce and drive that baby home. Hang your sconce on the nail and voila! You did it. Math is hard. So is putting holes in the wall.

Antique Brass Sconces

What I paid for this pair of antique brass wall sconces

I purchased these as part of a bundle from a man who had this incredible brass ice bucket on a pedestal as well as the sconces. I was able to get this pair of antique wall sconces and the brass ice bucket for $60 total. The sconces he took $10 off and the bucket he took $5 off  making the wall sconces $40 and the ice bucket $20. When I go to flea markets I never like to offer a lower price, I always make sure to say hello first (because it’s human decency) and then ask is there by chance a better price that could be made on this or that. Or in this case if I buy these items together could you work out a deal? (More flea market tips here)

If you can’t get to a flea market or antique store here are some incredible pairs I found on etsy! 

How to Hang Antique Brass Sconces

Can I make one more humble brag before I go? I took these pictures at home during quarantine. Otto LOVES taking pictures. I bought him this little digital camera from amazon during the last lockdown. I found that when I teach him how to use things he’s less likely to be rough with them and break them. I had this camera up on the tripod and taught otto how to hit the buttons. He and I had so much fun … I just had to sift through the 300 outtakes he took while holding the shutter down haha.

So what do you think? Do you like the simplicity of the wall sconces the best or do you prefer the old gallery wall? Was this how to hang wall sconces helpful to you? I’m horrible at math so I hope it made sense.

How to Hang Sconces

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  1. Robyn says:

    I love this entire view and your ironstone pitchers make me so happy! Bonus that Otto was the photographer

Abigail Albers       Author

Abby is a wife and mother, antique shopper, entrepreneur, gardener, sheep lady, sequin enthusiast and your Midwest Martha Stewart Wannabe.. Follow her on instagram @adventuresinabbyland.

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