Design Dilemma: Making Radiators Beautiful
Radiators are a fact of life for those of us living in older houses and apartments. Problem is, they’re not so pretty to look at. Plus, they take up a lot of space.
What can you do to beautify your radiator while making it more functional?
Top it off.
Make radiators more functional and a little prettier to look at by placing an appropriate surface on top to give you a resting place for your belongings. We recommend surfaces like glass or a stone — like soapstone, marble or granite. Stones won’t heat up to the extent that some other materials might, and it won’t bend or warp because of temperature changes. A radiator topper can be a great perch for a cup of tea, a beautiful vase, or a couple of books. Warmth-loving plants can also adorn a radiator topper. Just make sure to water more often!
Make radiator covers.
Wooden radiator covers have been the traditional way to spiff up (or rather completely hide) the awkward look of radiators. You can find them in a variety of styles — from a traditional look to a very modern one. You can find Prairie style covers, Mission Style covers and Shaker style covers. Increasingly, you can even order up more streamlined custom versions. The cover from Jason Muteham wins top honors for a clean modern look.
Use the opportunity to increase storage.
Below, a ready-made cover available from GE Little Group in the UK, brilliantly combines coverage with storage. Side shelves might provide a place to store books, photos or vases. The same concept is also available at Calligari cabinets.
One of the cheapest ways to beautify a radiator is to paint it with heat resistant paint. Painting a radiator in a bright color instantly makes a radiator a design feature, rather than just a utilitarian piece of equipment. Witness how a bright red radiator adds interest to the room below:
The main point here: don’t feel stuck with a less-than-beautiful radiator. Think creatively, and suddenly your utilitarian heater can become a stylish, functional and fun design element.
Images:via apartmenttherapy.com; www.scottishradiatorcovers.co.uk; http://greenefurniture.blogspot.com/; ge-radiator-covers.co.uk; http://www.caligaricabinets.co.uk; http://www.jasonmuteham.com/; http://designage.wordpress.com/2008/01/