How to hang pictures on a boat


When we packed up our little house to drive across the country, I made sure to bring a few decorations to make the boat feel a little more like home.  On a boat, you can’t just set something down and expect it to stay there. Everything must be either secured or stowed so that when the boat is under way we don’t end up with surprise missiles flying through the cabin. In July the previous owner showed me how they used hang pictures along with a few other tips and tricks for stowage they used to use while living on this boat. She had several watercolor paintings she had done throughout their travels and hung the frames with velcro instead of hammering nails into the beautiful teak.

I had to remove the adhesive from where their pictures were hung and tried using velcro to put our decorations up in their place. It worked for about a week but the so-called heavy-duty indoor/outdoor velcro I bought was no match for the heat and humidity. Pretty soon I had frames and wood decorations crashing down off the walls. The inside of the velcro strips held up no problem but the adhesive side just peeled off.

I was already making a mess of our doors and walls by taking off varnish with each attempt to hang something up so there was no turning back. Those pictures were getting installed no matter what! We tried some 3M double-sided adhesive foam tape next but that warmed up too and peeled right off just like the velcro.

The next idea was to use DUCK brand adhesive foam tape. I tried it first on the slippery finish over the fiberglass to hang a wood sign. Unfortunately it took me a few times to realize how uneven the surface was, but eventually I found the areas that needed an extra layer of foam to make the contacts flush. It may not look pretty underneath but this stuff really did the trick. My sign isn’t going anywhere now!


My mom had given me this sign a few years back for my birthday and I always found a special place for it wherever I lived. When we first saw the boat I knew right where I was going to put it.  The space above the fridge was perfect and it looked like it was just waiting to be decorated :) We’ve got special decorations and sentimental items all throughout the boat and its these things from our loved ones that remind us “Home Is Where The Heart Is.”


The sign reads:

“Sunshine On My Shoulders Makes Me Happy”

It’s a song recorded and co-written by John Denver. This little sign represents exactly what I was talking about in our last post. Our priorities are changing and its the little things in life that we appreciate the most. Sunshine On My Shoulders really DOES make me happy!!


About to set sail on an adventure of a lifetime, we are forever in search of surf, sun, sand and serenity :)


  1. Michelle says:

    I totally love it! I am actually listening to John Denver’s Album right now when I read this! What a coincidence! I am big fan of his music and his dedication to the outdoors!

  2. We used some foam stuff as well to hang a mirror on or head door. It worked for a while (couple months) but we recently just had a seriously humid/wet day and the stupid stuff came off! I don’t think it was the duck tape brand. We also tried those command strips rated for 10lbs to hang a barometer. Didn’t work and left Jason with a gash on his eyebrow. Talk about a way to wake up!

  3. Mark and Cindy - s/v Cream Puff says:

    Just think, if John Denver were alive today he’d be a 70 year old (legal) pot smoker. I can hear the song “Rocky Mountain High” in my head right now.

    As for hanging stuff on the walls, this works very well: Loctite, Fun-Tak, Mounting Putty (Google it). We have used it on just about every surface. It works and never leaves a mark. It says for use up to 1 lb but we have hung much heaver stuff with no problem (even being bounce around on the ocean). It is also very good for keeping things like lamps or ornaments in place on a shelf.

    Mark and Cindy
    s/v Cream Puff

Leave a Reply