Design Dilemma: Hiding Ugly Things | Home Design Find

Home Design Find

No Comments »

Design Dilemma: Hiding Ugly Things


modern living room how to tips advice


Air-conditioners.  Radiators.  Water pipes. Electrical cords. Even badly-placed electrical outlets. It doesn’t take much to introduce a note of ugliness into an otherwise pristine home. It can be a frustrating problem for design-conscious homeowners who have labored to make their home environment as beautiful as possible.  Yes, you’ve invested in a B & B Italia sofa, but what can you do about all the computer cords behind your desk?

Take heart, because there are some inventive solutions out there to banish ugliness. For instance, can you spot the air-conditioning unit in the living room above? Yep, we missed it too.

Let’s take a look at a few ideas:


Can you spot the interior air conditioner in this Paris apartment by Pascal Grasso Architecture? Neither could we!

airconditioner how to tips advice



Sometimes, light switches, thermostats and electrical outlets are stuck in strange places. One clever way to address this problem is by creating a gallery wall or some artistic interest that totally distracts from the awkward outlet. Something like this:

traditional dining room how to tips advice

Or this:

 how to tips advice
Below,  a canvas is cleverly used to cover a thermostat:
 diy wall canvas to hide thermostats how to tips advice
And same idea here:
canvas art hiding wall thermostat how to tips advice
If it’s an electrical outlet that has you down, take a look at how one homeowner took care of the problem in a kitchen:
traditional kitchen how to tips advice
And sometimes, it’s just a matter of keeping the electrical outlet the same color as the surface it rests upon:
traditional kitchen how to tips advice

Here the same principle applies. The outlet was wallpapered in the same paper as the wall:

contemporary powder room how to tips advice

And here’s a mirrored plate that works masterfully at concealing a plate in a mirror:

mediterranean bathroom how to tips advice
Since radiators are often at floor level, they can be relatively easy to hide by incorporating them into furniture design. For example:
traditional home office how to tips advice
Above, a radiator is incorporated into a desk in a small study. You would never guess!

And in the kitchen below, the radiator is incorporated into a window seat:

traditional kitchen how to tips advice

Below an air return is cleverly concealed to become just part of the architecture:

contemporary living room how to tips advice
So here’s the takeaway: Though you may feel forever plagued by an ill-placed fixture, it needn’t be so. You can cover it up in a million different ways that will seem natural and even add to the beauty of your home. All it takes is a little creativity!

You can receive our articles for free in your email inbox or subscribe to our RSS feed. Just enter your email below for the email subscription:

| Buy | Print

Leave a Comment