Britt's Done It Again! (Disguising TV)

One of my favorite DIY-ers is Britt from A Penny Saved (see her handpainted wall paper here) and just in case you haven’t seen this – I wanted to share because it’s an awesome budget-friendly and beautiful solution to disguising the wall mounted tv. Thanks to her for her tutorial – I can’t wait to give it a shot myself! Here is her post:

Wall-Mounted TV Disguise Tutorial

As promised, here is my super long and boring (but hopefully helpful) tutorial for disguising a wall-mounted TV. First things first – you should have a flat panel TV that is mounted with a stationary (non-swivel) mount. If you have a tilt mount you can probably modify these instructions slightly to get this to work.

If you haven’t hidden the cords yet, you will probably want to go ahead and do that now. Here’s a nifty tutorial for running wires through walls and installing outlets behind your TV to hide cables. We simply figured out where we wanted the wires to end up, punched some holes in the wall in strategic spots, and ran the cables through.
To start on the frame, take a trip to the hardware store and look at the moulding aisle. We picked out a fairly thick crown moulding. Be sure whatever you pick out will completely hide the TV frame plus about an extra inch in width. This is roughly how we went about constructing the frame.
We also attached a thinner piece of crown moulding underneath the outside of the frame so that it looked good from the side, added wood putty to any cracks we had and painted it out in our trim color.
My sad little diagram showing how everything fits together.
The next step is to make the box that will connect to the frame and hide the sides of the TV and the gap between the TV and the wall. This is as simple as getting four 1×4’s, cutting them to length and nailing them together on the corners. Just be sure to measure everything first to make sure that the box will fit exactly over the TV and will meet up with both the wall and the frame!
Then attach your frame to the box with nails and glue. At this point you’ll probably want to check to make sure that the box and frame fit nicely over your TV. Hopefully it does! Then you’ll need to paint out the box to match the frame.

WARNING – Possible heat issue for the TV.
To keep the TV from overheating, we drilled lots of holes in the top and bottom of the box to cool air to flow up from below, and hot air to escape from the top of your TV. Please, please, please be very careful to monitor how hot your TV is while you have the frame and box around it. Try turning on your TV and feeling for heat underneath the box every few minutes, up to however long you normally have your TV on. I don’t take responsibility if anyone’s TV overheats! My husband has even considered putting a small fan in the top of the box to improve airflow.

The next step is to figure out where your remote sensor is on the TV frame, and where that translates to on the wooden frame. Mark that spot and drill a 1/2″ – 3/4″ hole there so you will still be able to use your remote control. To conceal this hole, we stretched a scrap of thin white fabric over a coiled up piece of wire the size of the opening and fit the whole thing into the hole. (This ended up being too much wire in the way, we switched to a smaller piece of wire that did the same thing but caused less interference with the remote)
You’ll want to make sure before doing this that your remote control will work through the fabric! When yo
u’ve assembled it, it should look something like this:
Now you’re ready to mount the box over the TV. With the way our TV and box fit together, the best way to mount the box – without blocking those oh-so-important air holes – was to drill a thin piece of wood into studs at the appropriate level above the TV. The weight of the box will rest on this piece of wood, rather than the TV, and a couple of screws will keep the box attached to the wood so it doesn’t move or slide off.
Be sure to double-check your measurements here. The box should fit snugly around the TV, so if you’re off by just a little it could mean that the whole thing won’t work.


Now put the frame and box in place over the TV. Check out the sides of the box where it meets the wall. Chances are you’ll have a small gap. We did, too. So we went back to the store and picked up a thin piece of moulding and tacked it onto the box with a nail gun while making sure it was in position to hide the gap completely.

If you’re smart (not like us) you might want to wait to paint the whole thing – frame, box, and moulding – until this step.
Now you should have something like this, which is a big improvement already, no?
You can stop here and be satisfied with having dressed up the big black box a little, or you can be discontent like me and move onto the next step: artwork.
We came up with a few different ideas on how to incorporate artwork. One involved a rollershade, another – a windshield screen. But sometimes the simplest solution is the best. In this case, it meant creating another frame to fit perfectly inside the first one, and then stretching a canvas over it.
We made our own stretcher bars, but if you’re lucky enough to find the exact sizes you need at an art supply store and don’t mind shelling out a little extra cash, you could buy them. Be sure to leave just a teeny bit of wiggle room for the fabric when determining how big to make the frame. Then stretch your canvas and make sure it fits. As you can see, we ended up with a tiny gap at the top and bottom of the canvas, but sometimes you just have to work around imperfections.
Now you’re ready to get artsy! You could paint the canvas (like I did), or you could decoupage it, or use vinyl decals to decorate it. You could also stretch a pretty patterned fabric over the frame instead of a solid canvas. Sky’s the limit here.
Hopefully this was helpful to anyone out there who is thinking about doing this. Please let me know if I wasn’t clear enough or if you have questions. I’d love to see if anyone else does something similar!
Britt – Thanks so muchfor sharing! It’s a beautiful work of art and wires and tv components hanging out really distract me from an otherwise beautiful room. Mr. DIY has to keep reminding me that I don’t live in Martha Stewart’s house and that it doesn’t have to look perfect – but those wires…oh those ugly wires just mess up my decor! haha Thank you so much for your help with a low cost but GORGEOUS solution!

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I hope you’ll join me on Monday!
And don’t forget – you have a week to participate in the scavenger hunt!
You could be the proud owner of these! I see lots of DIY projects in your future!

Have a great weekend everyone!

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You’ll enjoy the browsing too!

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