Cornflake designs and expertly integrates bespoke home automation systems. Phillip Hine, design director at Cornflake, has a whole host of expert advice on how to ensure technology doesn’t overwhelm your beautifully thought-out interior design. We’ll be bringing you Phillip’s words of wisdom in an exclusive series of features. But, first up, how to ensure your fabulous new TV doesn’t overwhelm the room…
TVs are a perennial design issue. As much as we might love an evening plonked in front of the telly, the ugly black box is increasingly considered an eye-sore by many design-proud home owners. With TVs in use for a relatively small fraction of the day, and screens growing ever larger, camouflaging them has become something of an art form, literally. Hanging a beautiful painting in front of your flat-screen TV maximises valuable wall space and complements the décor. Simple DIY mounting frames can be found on sites such as Pinterest and Houzz but an automated picture lift which protects walls, expensive artwork and the TV screen from grubby fingerprints is far less cumbersome and suited to treasured paintings (pictured below – Panasonic TX50AS600, Future Automation Picture Split Mechanism and Chief MSTU bracket).
With picture rollers, an image literally rolls up and down powered by a small motor within a choice of frames. It allows you to supply your own artwork or photograph and to personalise the frame to suit your decor. See the latest ideas at PictureFrame.TV.
Hiding the TV within a wall-mounted mirror is a favoured trick of professional designers seeking the illusion of extra space. There are a growing number of ‘magic mirror’ suppliers, have a look at Neod and Magic Mirror.
Alternatively, hide your TV within a media unit or beautiful bespoke cabinet. Proficient upcyclers successfully adapt old cupboards for the purpose; but if you are not so DIY inclined a good local joiner should be able to create a media unit to your brief with the capacity to safely carry the weight of a TV and ensure wires are neatly hidden from view.
Media units are available from many high street retailers (and online, of course). A quick search will pull up a range of different styles and price points, such as this tall TV and bookcase unit from The Fabulous Furniture Company. [Photograph: The Fabulous Furniture Co]
The cabinet in Cornflake’s showroom was specifically commissioned to house a lot of AV kit and to showcase what we do here. It hides a pop-up TV in the bottom cupboard plus a drop-down roller movie screen in the pelmet. It’s an all-singing. all-dancing media unit utilising a sophisticated mechanism to silently lift the TV at the touch of a button. When not in use, the TV simply glides away and the furniture blends into the décor. Similar bespoke cabinets are made to order from Ecoism or a good local joiner should be able to assist.
Think outside the box when hiding the box! We recently converted a client’s treasured portmanteau trunk to disguise a TV within his bedroom. The chest was positioned discreetly at the foot of the bed with the TV on a pop-up automated lift that disappears when not required.