Unless you built from the ground-up or lucked way out, chances are there's something about your home you hate (or at the very least don't like the look of). It could be the cheap flooring in your rental, the air conditioning unit or radiator, the ugly sofa you can't afford to replace just yet or some other can't-change-it-thing. There are ways you can hide and disguise unsightly and unwanted home elements though, and six rules to abide by so you're successful.
1. Figure out if it actually needs hiding
Look, sometimes something can get under your skin and annoy you so much your eyes just gravitate toward it. But it can be getting on your nerves more than it is actually visible. Try looking at your home with fresh eyes and a different perspective by photographing the room with the offending item in it and seeing in the photographs if it's such a big visual deal. The element might be dominating your mind more than it's actually dominating the room.
Or ask a trusted friend to take a tour of the space and call out anything that sticks out to them or seems unpleasant. You might be surprised to hear the thing that's bugging you isn't even all that obvious to someone else. Of course, it's your home so if something is bugging you and you want to try to hide it, you've got the right. But it might not be visually necessary for the space to work, and that might save you time or money.
2. Don’t inadvertently add more attention to it
If you don't like the look of something and want to try to do something to disguise it, make sure you're not accidentally doing the opposite — trying something that will actually attract attention to it. Example? Perhaps using a plant to partially obscure an unwanted design element, but choosing something really bright and eye-catching and not big enough to hide the entire element, actually drawing the eyes to it. Or trying to paint it a color to make it less obvious, but choosing a color that actually contrasts with the rest of the space and sticks out even more.
Then disguise expertly:
3. Use color to camouflage
Color can be a powerhouse when it comes to wanting to make an unwanted home element seem much less noticeable. The big trick here is using the exact shade of something else in your space you want the element to blend into. Whether that's the wall it's on, or a furniture piece it's near.
4. Use pattern to distract
So just a few sentences above we caution you against doing anything to bring attention to your unwanted home element. Well this suggestion might fly in the face of that advice, but is actually effective: Play with pattern over that home element. Very busy patterns can confuse the eye, especially if you place that pattern over the home element and whatever might be surrounding it. You can paint that pattern on or consider wallpaper.
5. Use light to redirect
Light's a crazy powerful element in a home and you can actually bend it to your will, controlling where it goes so you control what your eyes pay attention to in your space. So if you have some element you're trying to disguise or distract from, simply use light to highlight what you would like to show off in the space, leaving the stuff you hate in the shadows.
6. Surround it with what you love until it blends
Sometimes the things you hate aren't something you can paint, hide or cover. Sometimes they are things that function, like a television set or a light switch. Set by themselves, they grab attention and visually offend. But surrounded by things you love — like an art gallery wall or a collection of items on display — so that the ugly item becomes more beautiful by association (or at the very least blends a little better).