How to Keep a TV from Standing Out Like a Sore Thumb

How to Keep a TV from Standing Out Like a Sore Thumb

Carrie McBride
Sep 18, 2015

Trust me, I am not a television apologist. I'm not embarrassed by my tv one bit and, if you watch yours frequently, I see no reason to hide it (it's your 365 Day a Year home, remember!). That said, it's not necessarily something you want to attract attention to - not because you're ashamed of it, but because a big black box (not to mention cords) takes attention away from all the other nice things you've done with the room. Aside from actually hiding it, there are ways to minimize its presence in a room. Here are some ideas:

Mount it on a dark wall

It won't, poof!, disappear, but a tv can really fade into the background when placed on a dark wall.

Or, try a patterned wall which is especially good at masking the cords.

Don't want to paint your walls? Dark shelving or cabinetry also helps the tv fade away.

Balance it out with other black accents.

Why does the tv work in this mostly white room? There are enough black accents that rather than stand out as a sore thumb, the tv feels like just one more bit of black in the room.

Incorporate it among a display of art.

A tv can look perfectly at home among a grouping of other rectangles.

See more examples of this: Composing a Gallery Wall Around the TV

Here, the similarly sized frame to its left echoes the shape of the television in a pleasing way.

Mount it above a fireplace.

Readers are divided on the aesthetics and ergonomics of this tactic, but a fireplace and mantle are already a natural focal point in a room so adding a television, especially one that is roughly the same width, can prevent them from competing with each other.

Source: Design*Sponge
(Image credit: Design*Sponge)

This side-by-side fireplace positioning is smart as the two black "boxes" mirror each other.

Put it on top of furniture of the same color.

The big black tv is less visually jarring atop a black dresser. The lamp, too, is black here.

Create lines around it

The shelves above this tv both draw the eye upward and above it, but also create horizontal lines on the wall and the tv becomes just more horizontal lines.

Another beautiful example of incorporating a tv among other horizontal planes.

This living room takes the idea even one stop farther with a grid on the wall and the tv tucked into its own spot, flanked by speakers.

Rule of Three.

Designers follow the "rule of three" principle - that an odd number of things counters the symmetry of an even number of things and feels more balanced and beautiful. Here, the tv acts as a third black focal point and subtly breaks up the symmetry of the painted built-ins.

Frame It.

It's hard to put into words exactly why this tv area is so inviting, but the framing of the tv by the two lamps certainly helps.

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