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How to Make Your TV Feel Part of Your Home

Mar 06, 2019  By Thomasville

Starting with the radio cabinets of the 1930s, on to the TV consoles of the 1960s, and through the entertainment center heyday of the 1980s, incorporating technology into home décor has always been a challenge. Technology tends to be bulky and messy, even before you account for today’s screens being larger than ever. You want something that big to feel like part of your home, not to take it over. A little creativity and planning will help you find or create a true media center that does the job.

To successfully incorporate a TV into your home design, you first need to acknowledge the realities. A TV needs what it needs: a power source, and cable and cord connections to other components. Also, you need what you need: a screen free of glare, at a comfortable, and watchable height. Work out from the placement that meets all these needs to end up with a successful media center solution.

The next question to address is the ideal relationship of the TV to the rest of the room. You can hide it completely when it’s out of use, blend it in so it’s visible but not featured, or make it an all-the-time focal point. Boxy tube televisions, with their unsightly backs, needed to be largely hidden, but with today’s sleek wall-mounted televisions, your media center can take on almost any form.

  • Hide it: A traditional media center—designed specifically for TV and electronics, with cabinet doors you can close—is certainly one way to hide a TV. But it’s not the only way. There are more ways to make a TV disappear when not in use than to simply put it in a media center with doors. Barn doors can slide across a flat-screen TV mounted on the wall, or hinged cabinet doors or shutters can fold back. A diptych (two-part) piece of art can work as well.
  • Incorporate it: A TV can be visible without being the sole focal point for the room. Some sort of base unit—a cabinet, a console—is essential for hiding accessory electronics (receiver, DVR, gaming console and controllers, etc.). After that, you can create a custom media center by flanking it with bookcases so that the TV is visible but framed. Paint the back wall of the bookshelves black to tie them to the TV. You can approximate a built-in out of a modular wall unit, with a place for the TV among other display and storage. Or arrange floating shelves around the TV, tied to the base unit by wood tone or paint color.
  • Make it a focal point: Today’s TVs are sleek and elegant, and there’s no shame anymore in making a focal point of them. Center your TV over a console-style media center, then tie them together by flanking the TV with lamps and putting a trough of greenery just below it. Or you can build a gallery wall around your TV, with framed art in black frames and white mattes. Make the group even more cohesive by defining the area with black paint on the wall. A screensaver can even turn your TV into art, especially if you build a frame around it.

Your home’s windows give you a view of the world outside, and with the right media center, your TV can be as much a part of your home as they are, and give you an even bigger view.

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