Even if you love your massive, flat-screen TV, one thing you probably don’t love about it is how it screams to the world just how much you love TV. Wouldn’t it be nice to hide it—and then reveal the screen only when showtime arrives?
Hiding TVs has a long history, says Lois Pade of Den Decorating Interiors. “The first ideas were armoires and entertainment centers—and as TVs became larger, we had to find more creative ways to disguise them,” she explains.
Here are some TV-hiding ideas to match any decor.
Vintage rug or tapestry
Some textiles and floor coverings are too delicate to be trod upon by your kids (or the dog!). Instead, mount one on your wall to hide your TV and protect your tapestry at the same time.
Kathleen Bliss Goldfarb of the Valley Design Team Decorating Den favors a wall hanging or fabric cover when she counsels clients.
“One of the most well-done TV hiders I’ve seen was a quilted fabric that was fastened with elastic straps around the backside of a wall-mounted screen,” she recalls. It hid the TV completely, but watching it was a snap because the cover simply rolled up so you could store it out of the way.
Homeowners with deeper pockets and enough clearance space in the ceiling might consider a drop-down pocket for a large TV. A click of a button sets the screen in motion, dropping it gently for viewing. But if your ceiling can’t accommodate this method, Brian Goldstein of All Systems AV recommends a flip-down mount, which takes just 7 inches of space above your ceiling.
A hinged panel
A simple hinged panel with a piece of art on the front can quickly hide a TV. If you’re a DIY type, consider retrofitting a picture you already own. And for the less crafty, companies such as Frame My TV can create custom framed artwork or a mirror that slides on easily to fit your screen.
But be sure to skip the TV-in-the-fireplace idea, begs Drew Henry of Design Dudes. “It’s the worst idea I’ve seen—it’s really very tacky.”
Going for a farmhouse or country chic style? Repurposed barn doors offer a rustic look and a fast method for stashing a TV. Wrought-iron handles and other details on either painted or gray, weathered doors are equally good picks in a casual living room.
Shutters or panels
Karen Gray-Plaisted of Design Solutions KGP recommends panels or pocket doors that slide over a screen. This works especially well for a TV in the kitchen. Or try a cabinet that a TV can be lowered into and then popped up when you’re ready to watch. Shutters are another option, especially a pair with an interesting shape or unusual patina.
Folding screens have been hiding flaws on walls for a very long time (think scratched paint or cracked plaster), so sliding one in front of an oversized flat-screen is a no-brainer. And by using a screen, you’ll be adding a pop of color or texture to your room.
“I love it and can’t wait for the price to fall so more people can incorporate it into their rooms,” says Gray-Plaisted.
An alternative: Stream “art” on your smart TV (or via Roku, Apple TV, or Amazon Fire TV) with an app like Artcast. You can select from more than 400 different galleries (videos, fine art, or photography) that will seamlessly loop pretty pictures on your screen.