Sometime ago I found this post on Apartment Thereapy.In it Kelly Giesen shows how she used this antique mantle in order to disguise her televison set. Minutes later readers filled the post with so, so many comments. Mostly about how impractical they think it must be. Specifically about the height at which the television is mounted at and how difficult it must be to view such a thing. Here is a picture from Apartment Therapy showing her mantle.
Now yes, I can see how people might think this is low. But I’d just like to point out a couple of things.
1- I have vivid memories of counsole style television sets that literally sat on the floor. I also know that there were a lot of people who had these things and nobody ever complained about them.
2-I also know a lot of people who mount their television sets over the mantle. Personally, this is not my taste. but I can understand why people might do it. However, I’d like to point out how stinkin’ high that makes TVs all across America. I mean, I’d totally rather look down towards the floor than look up at the ceiling.
Last week Daniel over at Manhattan Nest blogged about facing his sewing fears. Inspired by his gusto I took this project. I knew that I really wanted to do it but was afraid that I lacked the skill set in order to be successful so between that and the cost of a flat screen television I held off for a while.
Over Thanksgiving break I had a lot of time to shop around for a good deal and was able to purchase a small 32 inch tv set for a reasonable price. I tried to stay small in an effort to make my living room look less like an altar to the TV God.
Then I ventured out to a couple of architectural salvage shops to scout out an old mantle. I found lots of nice ones but none in the Arts & Crafts style of my house, well that were affordable that is. So I decided it was time to Face. Yo. Fears. and I built my mantle with the help of Anna White’s blog. on DIY furniture, which I am highly recommending. I didn’t create the mantle exactly as the plans suggested but they did give me lots of guidance.
So here is the finished product. You’ll notice the TV is mounted higher than Kelly’s and that it is mounted outside the box so the TV can breathe better. This house was originally built with a fireplace and it was taken out in the 60’s. As a result there were scars on the wall and floor from where it was so this replacement was built pretty close to those marks. On the top there are sconces that were here but I am still figuring out what I want to put there. You can also see that I tiled the box to make it a little more authentic looking and created a space for my cable box and DVD player. At the end I stained the mantle to match the woodwork in the house.
I put some things I had lying around the house on the mantle until I can find things I really like. I also need to find something to hang above it. But for now I am happy with it.
Oh yes.. that is our Christmas Tree beside it. More on that later.