While we’d hate to imaging a world without our TVs—how else would we binge-watch episodes of Broadchurch or The Fall, or keep up on the career of original riot grrrl Kathleen Hanna? —we admit that we could do without the decorating challenge they present. How to make a big, black, shiny rectangle look stylish, like an intentional piece of décor?
Try running a search on Google or Pinterest for how to decorate around a TV, and you’ll find dozens of creative solutions for this everyday, every-person design dilemma. But in our opinion, not all solutions are made equal, and some are downright icky. So we’ve rounded up our favorite ways to incorporate your TV into your home decorating, without compromising on either aesthetics or practicality.
1. Tuck it into a cabinet, armoire, or other piece of furniture with doors. This remains one of our all-time favorite ways to camouflage a TV, because you can simply shut the doors when it’s not in use. But why limit yourself to chunky entertainment centers? With TVs going the slim-and-slimmer route, you can now fit one into just about any type of furniture, like this vintage secretary.
2. Mount it or shelve it against a dark wall. If you’ve always been bothered by the way your TV rectangle stands out against a light-colored wall, this technique is for you. Simply paint an accent wall where you plan to hang the TV, and problem solved.
3. Cover it with art. The best part of these vintage botanical prints mounted on mini bifold doors is that, when closed, they don’t look like they’re hiding anything—they’re just a chic, over-the-mantel art display.
4. Incorporate it into an open shelving unit. This solution is ideal for built-in bookcases. Even if you have to modify one or more of the openings to fit the TV, when surrounded by books, collections, and other decorative objects, the TV becomes part of the vignette rather than a stand-alone eyesore.
5. Frame it. Annie went this route in her own home, with a sleek, minimalist white frame surrounding the TV. It’s mounted on a rotating arm that allows her to angle the screen, depending on where she’s sitting in the room. Bonus: the frame camouflages the mess behind the screen, so there are no dangling cords or plugs to contend with.
6. Make it part of a gallery wall. This falls into the “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” school of decorating; when you can’t hide the TV, why not make it an out-and-proud part of your décor by incorporating it into an art gallery wall? The white wall and symmetrical hangings of silver-framed art keep this design looking sleek purposeful.