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The Ultimate Picture Hang Solutions Hardware Glossary

  • by Arthur Harrison
  • 9 min read

When displaying artwork or photographs, the right picture hanging hardware can make all the difference. From hooks and wires to brackets and hangers, numerous options are available to ensure your pieces are securely displayed. To help you navigate the world of picture hanging, we’ve compiled one convenient list: the ultimate picture-hanging hardware glossary.

Whether you’re a seasoned art collector or a novice decorator, this guide will simplify your journey into the world of picture hanging and help you hang your pictures confidently and precisely. The following is the ultimate picture-hanging hardware glossary at Picture Hang Solutions.

Adhesive hanger

Adhesive hangers are made of high-density plastic with a pressure-sensitive foam-backed adhesive. They're strong enough to adhere to various surfaces like tiles, glass, and metal.

Anti-tip kit

An anti-tip kit is a safety device designed to secure large pieces of furniture, such as cabinets and bookshelves to the wall, and prevent them from tipping over. The kit typically includes furniture brackets, cables, pins, and screws.

Bear claw screw hangers

Bear claw hangers are double-headed mounting screws with self-drilling tips that can penetrate drywall, lath, plaster, and wood without needing anchors or pilot holes.

Braided picture wire

A braided picture wire is made from interwoven strands of thin galvanized steel wire, making the finished product durable and flexible. It’s often used with D-rings and metal frame hangers.

Brick clip fasteners

Brick clips allow items to be hung on a brick wall without any drilling. The bracket has serrated teeth to hold on to the top edge of the brick and gripping arms to clamp onto the other edges.


Bumpers are cushioning devices with self-sticking adhesives. They protect wall surfaces from damage and absorb shock. They also help level the picture frame.

Ceiling grid hooks

Ceiling grid hooks are used to suspend objects from ceiling grids. The clip at the base allows the hook to slide along the metal track, and the hook can hold chains, cables, and s-hooks. 

Conventional hooks

Conventional or traditional hooks are an umbrella term for hooks that come in various sizes and weight capacities. They typically have a curved or angled shape.

Drywall anchors

A drywall anchor adds support and stability when mounting heavy items on drywall surfaces. They’re designed to distribute the object's weight and prevent the screw from damaging the wall.

Drywall hooks

A drywall hook is specifically designed for mounting items on drywall surfaces. It is made up of a hook or a bracket that can be easily mounted onto drywall, and a nail to hold it steady.


Named after their shape that resembles the letter “D,” D-rings are typically made of metal and come with a loop at the top, which is the attachment point for hooks, nails, or screws.

Euro hangers

Euro hangers consist of a metal bracket shaped like a keyhole. The larger opening at the top attaches to the frame, while the narrower slot at the bottom holds the picture wire.

Flare Cleat 

A flare cleat hanger is a variation of the traditional French cleats. Its flare edges are angled outward for enhanced stability, improved distribution, and flexibility for easier alignment.

Flat hook

Also called a side-screw hook, a flat hook has a narrow and vertical profile used for hanging cables. It has a hole for cable insertion and a screw from the side of the hook for adjustments.

French cleat

A French cleat system consists of two interlocking wall and object pieces, shaped like an inverted “L." They mount items flush to the wall and distribute the weight evenly to minimize stress on the wall and the frame.

Foam board hanger

Foam board hangers are designed for hanging lightweight foam boards or foam core panels on walls. They have an adhesive backing to attach to the back of the foam board and a small hook or loop at the front as an attachment point for nails or hooks.

Gallery rods

Gallery rods, also called OG (open gallery) rods, are either brass or metal rods that hook onto an OG picture rail molding and allow one picture to be hung above another. 

Gallery track

A gallery track is the core of a gallery hanging system. It is similar to a picture rail but is more discreet and modern and can be installed anywhere on the wall. They come with accessories such as hooks, cables, or rods.

Gallery track cords

Gallery cords are specialized cables designed for suspending framed pieces from a picture rail or track. They are made from stainless steel or high-strength nylon and thread through the attaching connectors or hooks.

Hang-straight hook

Also called a self-leveling hook. It typically consists of a metal hook or bracket with two points of contact that allow a wired picture frame to be hung from two points simultaneously and keep the framed picture straight.

Hardwall plastic hook

A hardwall plastic hook is made for hard-surface walls such as concrete, cement, brick, soft stone, and hardwood. It already has nails built into the hook, with the back surface of the hook being in complete contact with the wall, eliminating the need for anchors.

J-Channel molding

Also known as J-trim, J-channel moldings are made from various materials such as vinyl, aluminum, or steel. While it has several other uses, it can serve as a picture rail in the case of picture hanging.


A J-hook is an adjustable hook used as part of a picture rail system. The curved bottom hooks the picture wire or hanger. The threaded hole allows it to slide up and down steel or nylon cables, while the side screw or push top button locks it in place.

Keyhole hanger 

A keyhole hanger has a round hole at the bottom and a slot at the top. This shape allows the head of the nail or screw to slip in easily through the larger opening and slide up towards the notch for a more secure hold.

Lead anchor

Lead anchors are commonly used for securing objects to brick, masonry, and concrete walls to provide a sturdy and reliable attachment point for screws, bolts, or other fasteners.

Loop hanging cords

Loop hanging cords are part of the gallery hanging system and a type of picture rail cable, where the cord is designed with a loop and crimp at one end to allow for easy hanging on a picture rail hook.

Monkey hanger

Monkey hangers are adjustable hooks for brass gallery rods. The hook holds the picture wire and has a unique spring mechanism that locks it in place when the weight from the frame is added. The base slides along the gallery rod and locks into place.

Notch hanger

A notch hanger is commonly used for metal frames and uses a notch or groove system for hanging objects. They’re typically made of metal brackets or plates with grooves along the length of the hanger that provide secure attachment points.

Picture hangers

Picture hangers are specialized hardware for hanging framed artworks, pictures, and other items. They are attached to the back of the object and provide a secure attachment point to the wall, often paired with accompanying nails or screws. 

Picture rail hook

Picture rail hooks have an S-curve profile, with the curve at the top engaging with molding and the bend at the bottom carrying the picture wire. They can be easily moved along the picture rail, allowing for flexible placement of the hanging frames.

Picture rail

Also called “OG” (open gallery) molding, a picture rail is a horizontal strip of molding with an S-curved profile installed along the top of the wall near the ceiling. They are commonly found in older homes as a decorative and functional feature.

Picture rail

Picture rail hanging system

A picture rail system consists of a track installed horizontally along a wall and an assortment of special hooks and cables. It allows easy changing and rearranging of displayed pieces without needing nails, screws, or other traditional hanging methods. 

Picture wire

Picture hanging wire is a thin, strong, and flexible wire used to hang and support framed pictures. It can be made of different materials, such as stainless steel or nylon. It’s attached to the back of the frame using eyelets or d-rings.

Sawtooth hangers

Sawtooth hangers are small metal strips with a flat edge on one side and a jagged edge on the other. They are widely available in various sizes, weight capacities, and materials, such as metal or plastic, to accommodate different hanging needs.


A screw is a metal pin that joins things together by piercing through the surface and rotating until it creates a firm hold. The anatomy of a screw includes a head as a surface for applying force, a point to penetrate the surface, and a threaded shaft to keep it in place.

Screw eye hanger

Also known as an eye screw or bolt, a screw eye hanger has a threaded shaft and a looped or circular eyelet at the top. The eyelet serves as an attachment point for a wire or hook.

Security mounting plate

A security plate is an additional mounting point attached to the back of the frame and requires the use of a security screw which is installed onto the wall. With the use of a security wrench, the screw can be turned in order to lock the frame to the wall. 

Security hanging kit

A security hanging kit is several pieces of security hardware designed to eliminate casual theft or tampering of artwork in high-traffic areas. For Picture Hang Solutions, our kits contain mounting plates, wall brackets, T-screws, and special wrenches.

Security T-screw

A security T-screw has a threaded shaft and a flat, horizontal head, making it look like a “T.” The T-head is designed to lock and fasten to the security mounting plate and secure the frame.

Security wall bracket

A security wall bracket is another type of hardware designed to mount and lock objects to a wall securely. It has a slotted hole for the screw to fasten to and engages in the channel of a metal frame, making it also act as a metal frame hanger.

Sign standoff 

Sign standoffs are typically made of acrylic, brass, aluminum, and stainless steel. The body, or barrel, keeps the panel away from the wall, with a threaded hole for the screw to insert. The cap or screw head fastens or mounts the panel onto the barrel.

Snap Hanger

Snap hangers serve the purpose of fastening wire to the rear of metal frames. They offer effortless adjustability, requiring only a simple press on the snap hanger to smoothly slide it up or down along the channel.

Solid hanger

Solid hangers have an L-shaped body, with the lower angle with screw built to fit seamlessly into the frame channel, while the upper angle has a keyhole notch for the accompanying nail or screw to fit into.

Stainless steel picture wire

Stainless steel wires have seven individual strands of stainless steel wire twisted together instead of braided, making them more durable but less flexible.

Stand-alone cable hanging system

Unlike a picture rail hanging system, the standalone gallery system does not need a track to suspend multiple frames. It consists of a bullet hanger with a swivel cover, picture rail cables, and the appropriate picture cable hooks.

Strap hangers

Strap hangers are flat metal brackets with multiple screw holes that allow the frame weight to be distributed evenly across the surface. The loop at the top allows the frame to hang from a hook or hanger affixed to the wall.

Three-part hanger

3-part hangers are similar to D-rings, but the difference is that 3-part hangers are specifically built for metal frames. Like other metal frame hangers, they are screwed into the frame's side rails and secure the picture wire in place.

Track connector

A track connector connects multiple tracks to create a longer gallery track. They are fastened to the wall with screws and ensure a seamless connection between tracks.

Track locator

A track locator is an essential part of the picture rail or gallery track system and is a round piece of steel hardware fastened to the wall with screws to hold the track onto the wall. 

Tremor Hook

A tremor hook provides enhanced security for wall-mounted items, particularly in areas more susceptible to seismic activity. Its unique design features a locking tab that ensures the frame hardware cannot fall off the hook. 

Utility hook

A utility hook is designed to be mounted on walls, doors, and other surfaces commonly used for hanging or storing various items. Common uses for utility hooks include coats and bags, kitchen tools, and carpentry and gardening equipment.

Vinyl coated wire

Vinyl-coated wire is a subtype of stainless steel wire but is softer and more flexible thanks to its protective vinyl coating.

Wall anchors

Wall anchors provide additional support when fastening screws or hooks into walls. They distribute the weight or load of the hanging object and prevent the hook from slipping out. Depending on the wall surface material, they come in either such as plastic or metal.

Wall Buddies Hanger

Wall Buddies Hangers are attached to the back of the frame with the sawtooth side facing up, its edges held by two wall hooks. Compared to standard hook and wire hanging, Wall Buddies Hangers strengthen the upper corners of the frame and eliminate stress on frame rails.

Wall dog screws

Wall dog screws are one-piece mounting screws that have a heat-treated point to help penetrate metal and wood studs. They can easily be installed on drywall without pilot holes, although other surfaces like plaster, concrete, and brick need pre-drilling.

Wall Dog Wire Hanger

The Wall Dog Wire Hanger is a metal hanger that can hold a variety of frame weights through its broad flat base. It has an extruded aluminum lip to keep the picture wire from slipping out of place. It also comes with pre-drilled holes specifically designed to accommodate Wall Dog screws.

Final Thoughts

With this glossary, you’re well-equipped to handle any picture-hanging project with confidence. Should you have any questions or if you need further assistance, feel free to reach out to us via email. We are always delighted to help! Happy hanging!

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