TV Components

So many of my clients want vintage credenzas to use as TV consoles. But we keep running into the same issue – they want to keep the component boxes hidden, but they also want to be able to use their remotes. And they don’t want to spend more than the cost of the TV to get a hidden system installed.

Then today I saw this image again from the home of the owner of See Jane Work. Check out the doors to her armoire…


It looks like radiator grill! Wouldn’t it be so easy to just add a pretty grate to the doors of a vintage armoire or credenza? And then just paint the grill the same color as the rest of the piece? The remote still works, but I don’t have to look at my cable box! Win-win.

I also like this pierced MDF decorative screen, probably even better than the radiator grill idea. Have you seen any products like this?

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48 thoughts on “TV Components

  1. I have seen the metal grids at our local hardware store and I always think they would be fun to use for a project. I have a cabinet with chicken wire, it is french and I love it!

  2. I had a long piece made for my teenage son's 'crib' for under the mounted flat screen. On either end we used pierced 'screen' – don't really know what to call it – for equipment usage and in the middle we had two storage sections, one for a mini-refrig. He is in heaven.

  3. Great option. Another is an infrared remote (cannot remember exactly what it is called but they sell them at audiovisial stores and places like Best Buy). Basically there is a little sensor inside the cabinet and a tiny one outside where you point the remote. That way you can keep the components behind the closed door and still use the equipment.

  4. This is a great idea. We just replaced our media console with an old chest. Fortunately, it was up just enough on feet that we were able to slide our box underneath so that it's almost completely out of site. It's definitely a problem if you have lots of components, though. . .

  5. So pretty! Btw, we actually have a remote for our DVR (because what else is important these days?) that is made to work through cabinet doors, and I THINK we just had to ask the cable company for it. May have been an extra $25, but WELL WORTH IT.

  6. We use an antique armoire as a tv cabinet. However it is beautiful wood that we would not want to paint. It has full length doors and my husband built shelves for the inside – and we vaneered the outside edging of the shelves to match the armoire. We just open our doors when using. Love an old armoire to hide all the tv *stuff*.


  7. I'd love to get your ideas for a fabric screen or something to cover over a flat screen tv. We are going to hang one over the fireplace, directly on the wall, with no cabinetry, but I don't want it to be an ever-present eye, always looking out over the family room. Thoughts?

  8. Isn't the TV storage situation always the most annoying thing to deal with? Recently for a client we installed metal grating from Simon's Hardware (it was an X design with optional rosettes/medallions at the intersections) and had a sheer shirred fabric installed on a tension rod behind that. It was really beautiful in their very formal library. Cheers!

  9. You should recommend a satalite remote control for those clients – we have one and you don't even have to point it at the components – I think it is about $150 is all. All of our stuff is hidden and the remote lets us still change channels.

  10. We covered the doors on our vintage console with a fun, patterend fabric. The remotes work just fine through the fabric and it's pretty. :)

  11. here is a completely different solution ive used for clients and in my own home: the xantech ir receiver. its this tiny black oval about 1" by 3.25" that has a tiny wire attached to it. the other sensors then are placed over the sensors on your cable box, vcr, dvd player, etc. then all you do is just point your remote to the tiny sensor and it controls all your tech-y stuff. its perfect! we have all our tv components in a cabinet in our bookshelves and the tiny black piece sits hidden on the side. here is a link:

    worth looking into! definitely not as pretty as the grates but this way you can have the components completely covered and just run the tiny black box up to sit next to the tv. perfect! :) good luck
    and i love your blog!!

  12. That sounds like a beautiful way to lighten up a heavy piece of furniture, but there are ways to make the remote work through the wood doors if you want to. My husband will be doing that for us if we can find a credenza we like!

  13. Thank you so much for the link, Jenny! I love their products. My mind is reeling with ideas for all their grills and grates! BTW, disregard my last email to you about blog/web design. I decided I'll continue on with my own web design on Dreamweaver. Hiring a web designer is just so expensive and I'm half way there! As for the blog, I just saw the link at the bottom of your blog for Rainy Day Templates. You're just a wealth of resources!! ;-)

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  15. I second Clair. We took the panels out of our armoire and stapled fabric in their place. Worked like a charm, and it's another way to add texture to the room.

  16. My components aren't even in the same room as my tv. We just use some little eye thing that is on the tv, you can't even see it. It works great. MB

  17. If you find out how to get the pierced wood in the US, please post sources! I'm working on a project where it would come in so handy, and I can't even get radiator screen here in the South.

  18. Metal grids, that is a great idea. it looks really nice. My mom has this kind of thing in her house. Though hers isn't metal. It's kind of like a wicker weave. It reminds me of the back of a rocking chair. Do you know what i mean? You could try and find something like that too.

  19. I would be a little weary of how well the remote works, but I'd be MORE worried about something else- it's a bad idea to keep all those components hidden away all the time. They overheat and get no air circulation. We actually run our tv with a computer, and there was NO way my husband was letting me put it in anything enclosed- it would be a disaster.

    My fav idea- what one of the anonymous commenters said about an armoire you just open when using (ie: tv AND components are behind the door). My parents have always done this and it works out fabulously.

  20. I hide our stereo + big speakers under a skirted table. Similar to the skirted console you made :) The remote still works, the stereo still sounds great, and I never have to look at it. So I'm sure a cool fabric would work in place of the grill too.


    This product (Next Generation Remote Control extender) is all you need and it only costs $35. I use it in a vintage credenza. The little unit sits inside the credenza next to the components. The transmitter replaces on of the batteries in the remote. It works anywhere in our home and all of the components are neatly tucked away behind solid wood doors. I only wish I had found it sooner!

  22. We've done the same thing on two 'homemade' media cabinets- the electronics are all installed behind a door made from a piece of smoked glass that is darkened a bit more by using that tinted film that you can put on car windows. It makes the electronics invisible (except for the lights) and the remote passes right through. We originally did this to keep small people from touching things but it looks great too.

  23. I have that issue since I moved a dresser to hold the TV. I've been considering adding a box on top of the dresser with the grill effect for components-but I also don't want to raise the TV any higher.

  24. I just put together a media unit from Ikea with a few tweaks – I lined the back of the shelves with decorative paper and then taped decorative velum paper to the inside of the glass doors (behind which we keep all of the electronics). I get lots of compliments on the velum (people think its frosted glass), and the remotes work great.

  25. If any of your clients have Direct TV there is a sensor on the remote. It will work through the cabinet doors and actually doesn't even need to be pointed toward the box, only at the TV.

    We actually have a vintage credenza that we use with closed doors on the top and bottom. It is on one side of the room and the TV is mounted over the mantle. Works famously for us.

  26. We have a frosted glass in the doors of our credenza – the remotes work great and I can still see the glow of a component if one of the kids left it on (the DVD player, wii, etc)but all the mess and clutter is hidden.

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