Living Room

Hacks to hide wires and electrics

I’m back! Blimey it’s been a while – since Christmas in fact. I didn’t plan to have such a long break from blogging or decorating, but life had other ideas.

Thankfully, this weekend was one of the first Rob had off work in a long time so it meant we finally had the chance to complete a project we had been planning for aaaages.

In one of my previous posts, I mentioned we had mounted our TV to the wall above our sideboard and although it looked great, we were annoyed by the exposed wires. I also didn’t like to see our Sky Box basking pride of place on the sideboard. It looked clunky, untidy and took up all the room intended for pretty furnishings.

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Rob’s PS4 has even jumped in on this photo op! Thankfully that can be easily hidden but the rest couldn’t and looked awful.

I trawled the internet looking for ways we could hide our electrics. There are certainly plenty of ideas out there and after numerous Pinterest pins and ‘How to’ videos we started putting a plan into action.

Hiding the Sky Box

After testing whether our Sky Box worked from inside the sideboard (and having a tantrum when it didn’t), we knew there was no option but to have it on top of the unit with a cover of some kind.

We came up with the idea to break down a wicker-wood crate from Dunelm and re-build it with sheets of perforated aluminium from Amazon. Encasing the Sky Box this way would make it less of an eyesore, but would make sure it was still detectable to our remote control.

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The crate measured 44cm in length, 31cm in depth and 20cm in height which meant that when covered, the Sky Box would still have plenty of space for ventilation and wouldn’t overheat in its new home.

First, we managed to snap some of the top frame off the crate before removing some of the wicker.

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Unfortunately, the rest of the frame didn’t want to come off so easily. We wanted to avoid forcing it and breaking the wood, so Rob set on it with his saw.

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After managing to pull it all apart, we were left with what looked like a teeny tiny table (cute). Rob shortened the ‘legs’ so it wasn’t too high when covering the Sky Box, and then we measured up the aluminium before using side cutters to trim it to size.

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We slotted 3 sheets of aluminium into the existing grooves of the frame and then put the edges back on, leaving the back open for the rear wires of the Sky Box to run behind the sideboard.

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The Sky Box was covered with the finished product and as you can see it does a great job! But, we still had an issue with the TV cables and wires running up the wall which ruined the effect entirely. Sad times.

So, we started the next project…

Hiding the wires from our wall-mounted TV

As you can see in the ‘before’ picture below, the wires were reeeeally noticeable. Granted there could be a lot more and it could look a lot worse, but Rob and I both felt equally irritable about them being on show.

We decided we would build a ‘backboard’ behind the TV. Not only would this hide everything but we could also turn it into a bit of a feature.

Rob started by removing the TV, measuring up and planning the frame with this sawn timber from B&Q.

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Once all measured out, he got to work fixing it to the wall. We dropped the frame down a few inches below the coving and left a large gap between the bottom and the floor to leave room for cables. Rob then added some trunking to keep them all together and make it easier to feed them back through.

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After that was sorted, we added this plasterboard cover from B&Q. Luckily, the measurements were just what we wanted without even needing to cut it down. It was slightly bigger than the frame which meant we could create a small ‘lip’ around the edges. Rob drilled it in place and then removed it, using the screw holes as guidance for cutting out the square which would expose the TV bracket and wall socket.

While he was doing that, I was playing with wallpaper samples as you can see… and found a favourite! I apologise for the poor picture – it’s a brick-effect wallpaper from B&Q made to look quite aged and imperfect which is why we loved it.The others were a bit too ‘clean’ and obvious as prints.

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Once Rob had cut a square at the top of the plasterboard, he re-fixed it to the wood frame and thankfully it fit perfectly around the plugs and TV bracket. I was even more thrilled because it meant I could get on with the fun of wallpapering!

The wallpaper went on really easily – it was one that could be added straight to a pasted wall (plasterboard in our case) without having to paste the paper too. If you do ever wallpaper straight on to plasterboard it’s worth considering whether or not you are likely to ever remove it in the future. If you are, it’s recommended that you prime it or use lining paper first, as removing wallpaper further down the line can just pull the plasterboard away. For us, we aren’t planning to ever change it, so it wasn’t an issue.

Here we are in action…

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We are pros at matching wallpaper patterns by the way – who knew? We definitely didn’t. Once we had all the sheets stuck down and aligned, we trimmed off the excess and hid any edges behind the plasterboard. This helped give it a really nice and neat finish – pretty professional looking really (hats off to Rob).

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It was definitely getting there! After lots of tidying away and leaving the paper to dry a little, we eventually got the TV back up on the wall. Finally, following a lengthy fight with our HDMI cables, everything was plugged back in to its rightful place.

Ta-daaaah!

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Terrence the T-Rex looks absolutely thrilled doesn’t he? He is loving life with his new backdrop and nice Moroccan-style box.

The sticks in the vase are actually the longer pieces of wicker from the original crate. I pretty much threw them in there for safe keeping, but then decided I really liked them like that so there they are! There are lots of smaller sticks left over too which I have a separate idea for, but that can be saved for another blog post 🙂

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So here’s the finished product! As well as a shady outline of me (oops).

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We’re so pleased with how it all turned out. Rob thinks he’s a DIY genius.

It’s really made a feature out of the chimney breast and the rustic-looking brick paper gives a beautiful effect so I’m really happy with our choice. Our next step is to potentially add some LED lights to the outer edge of the frame just behind the overhanging plasterboard, so it creates a nice subtle, warm glow. Lovely!

Thanks for reading and hope you like it! 🙂

emmasig.

 

 

 

 

 

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