By Jason Hammond
I think I’ve said it before, but I really like TV. I know that’s not the politically correct thing to say, especially for a design driven person, but it’s the honest truth. Many of my younger, creative co-workers, and several of my close friends, are shocked when I tell them how much I like TV. I’ve even received the occasional sneer when I mention my affinity for the joy I receive from watching TV. I wished I could reassure them that I only watch the smartest shows, or those that offer some redeeming value of education—which I do truly appreciate—but I’m also guilty of taking in my fair share of low brow TV as well. However, the biggest problem my love for television has presented is that TVs are not particularly the most attractive feature of a homes interior. Certainly the introduction of the flat screen has alleviated this some but now there is an added level of complexity. Where do I put this thing on the wall and how do I hide all the nasty cords?
For us this situation has manifested itself in our upstairs family room. When we originally planned for the placement of the TV in that room we alotted to have coaxial cable run to one wall at the same height as the outlets. This seemed logical at the time but now it seems that our TV viewing needs would be better serviced if the TV was wall mounted. This presents us with the challenge of hiding a series of cords, and most likely moving both the coxial lines and the electrical outlets up on the wall. This isn’t really that big of an obstacle, but it did get me to thinking about if there were better options. I was mulling over some potential ways to minimize the visual noise that a TV and the various elements that come along with it present. Could I create a floating wall out of a simple materials like walnut plywood that would hide all the distracting cords. Or what if I created a series simple floating boxes on the wall and utilized some of them to hide my components while others served as design elements to hold various pieces of art and sculture. Then somewhat ironically one of the readers of my blog (Paris Renfroe) wrote me a question regarding my mailbox design that lead to the exchange of a few email, and some samples of his custom furniture work. In his collection of photos I found some interesting treatments for dealing with flat screen TVs and home entertainment settings. Although I can’t say the perfect solution for what we need was in the mix it certainly was enlightening to see how another design person had solved the same problem in similar ways, offering me some more food for thought.