Creative Ways to Hide Household Eyesores
As the saying goes: Out of sight, out of mind.
Maybe it's something that's always bugged you. Or perhaps you didn't discover "the thing" until you moved in-or shifted some furniture around. Regardless, there it is, in bold relief: An unsightly object like a wire, a radiator, or a wall outlet. And the longer you live with it, the more you want to scream. You work hard to ensure that your home is clean, efficient, and pleasant, but that ugly eyesore definitely doesn't spark joy. It's a daily frustration.
Of course, no home is perfect and improvements can always be made, but if the sight of a tangle of phone chargers drives you up the wall, or walking by a conspicuous breaker panel makes you cringe, you don't have to live with it. In an ideal world, you'd address the root cause of the eyesore and get rid of it for good. But if you're renting or if your pet peeve is entangled with your home's structure, that's not always possible. To that end, we asked interior designer Kerrie Kelly of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab to share some easy ways to conceal common eyesores. Some fixes are free; others require only a fresh coat of paint or cleverly-placed artwork or mirrors. Soon, you'll clear the visual clutter and breathe easier in your space.
Breaker Panel or Utility Box
Paint your breaker panel and utility box the same color as the wall to make the eye sore less obtrusive. You might also consider covering the panel with a light piece of artwork that can be easily removed (or has hinges) to gain access.
Place it inside a cabinet or closet within range of your devices. "A centrally located, but hidden, router is the best router," says Kelly.
Charge smartphones, tablets, and laptops without cluttering your surfaces by outfitting a drawer with a power strip or installing an outlet within. "With a bit of thoughtfulness, chargers, and cords can be staged inside nightstands, vanities, desks and drop zones," says Kelly.
Hide televisions behind sliding mirrors and artwork, suggests Kelly. Or, plan for the television within your design by recessing into cabinetry or behind entertainment center doors.
Laundry Room Essentials
Treat your laundry room like other public spaces in your home, advises Kelly. Staging efficient racks, shelving, pull-outs behind cabinetry, and even a tucked-away ironing board, allows for a beautiful space for even the hardest-working home. Use adjustable shelving to accommodate a variety of bottles, jugs, and boxes so they are readily available. You can also give your laundry room a neat, unified appearance by putting jugs and detergents in bigger containers.
Make your pet's bed display-worthy by designing and monogramming them using your home's color palette and patterns, suggests Kelly. Choose indoor-outdoor fabrics that allow for easy cleaning. Just be sure to incorporate a zipper in your color coordinating pooch pad so you can throw it into the laundry.
"Our house motto is 'touch it once,'" says Kelly. "That means open, pay and file the bill; open, read, RSVP the invite; or open and set the magazine in the reading material stack or rack." A secretary with multiple cubbies and drawers below allows you to have office supplies and papers at arm's length with the luxury or closing the whole desk off when guests arrive.
If the space under your desk is home to an unsightly mess of wires or stacks of files and books, hide it with a table skirt. You can purchase one ready-made or create a customized version yourself. This trick also works for consoles, accent tables, and small bookcases.
Vents now come in a variety of metal finishes and wood stains to match hardwood floors and coordinate with the rest of your home's finishes. Whether your style is modern or traditional, a variety of grid patterns are also offered to fit your home's aesthetic, says Kelly.