You know you've earned your interior designer club card when you learn how to take household eyesores and turn them into personal triumphs. Here are six common household trouble spots, and some clever ways to never have to look at them in the same way again.
1. A/C Wall Unit: Mara over at Design Evolving solved the problem of the unsightly necessity (in lead photo above) with a little help from her brother and IKEA.
2. Nonfunctional Fireplaces: Some fireplaces are beautiful and some…just aren’t. If they don’t work, the inside is often a crumbling dirty mess. Until the clean-up project gets crossed of your to-do list, cover it up with a decorative screen, like this wallpapered one created by Ferm Living.
3. Awful Carpet: It’s the bane of many renters, and isn’t going anywhere soon. Cover stained fibers or commercial grade carpet with layers of area rugs. Emily Henderson chose to cover Joy Cho's build grade floor covering with a colorful patterned rug. It's not totally invisible but the awfulness is minimized.
4. Acoustic Ceiling Tiles: Emily and Alex solved this common problem by replacing the standard tiles in their reading room with a patterned version. You can still see the old tiles, but just on the outer edges of the ceiling.
5. Laundry Appliances & Supplies: Simple hanging curtains or fabric panels, like these linen ones from Heather Bullard, can hide a multitude of sins, whether it's the washer and dryer themselves, plastic hampers, or bottles of detergent.
6. Baby Gates: Love the kid, hate the baby proofing. Chris and Julia ditched the plastic or wood versions, and fashioned their own minimalist modern one instead. The plexiglass makes it less conspicuous.