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media console

8 In DIY/ Interiors

How to Style Your Media Console

I have a complex love/hate relationship with the TV. Netflix and of course, The Bachelor, are integral parts of the simple American life we lead, but that black hole of a rectangle throws a big ‘ol wrench in making your media console area look good, am I right? For years, while watching TV at night with my husband, I’ve secretly also been analyzing our media console trying to figure out the best configuration and way to style it out.

Since we all have TV’s, and they’re probably not going any where anytime soon, why not make the most of this area? Today, I’m teaming up with interior designer and vintage curator, Tasha Schultz, of Tchotchkes Design Studio to demystify the process and share concrete tips for creating a balanced composition around the TV.

Get interior designer Tasha Schultz's fast and friendly tips for styling your media console with a mix of thrifted and new accessories. Get interior designer Tasha Schultz's fast and friendly tips for styling your media console with a mix of thrifted and new accessories.

Let’s take it from the top, shall we? Here’s bare-bones look at my TV area. So sad and cold feeling. The media console is a two piece Besta cabinet from IKEA that we’ve mounted to the wall with a finished height of 31″. The TV is attached to the wall with a pivoting arm mount 11″ above the console. The designer in me wants the TV placed higher on the wall than it is, but the TV watcher in me (and my chiropractor too) want it placed at sitting eye level. We’ve mounted it about 6″ higher than “sitting eye level” as a compromise.

Since this 1936 house of ours has plaster walls in all it’s crumbly glory, we decided not to run the cables behind the wall and instead, run them down through a grommet on the top of the cabinet.

Get interior designer Tasha Schultz's fast and friendly tips for styling your media console with a mix of thrifted and new accessories.

 

Get interior designer Tasha Schultz's fast and friendly tips for styling your media console with a mix of thrifted and new accessories.

Get interior designer Tasha Schultz's fast and friendly tips for styling your media console with a mix of thrifted and new accessories.

Adding visual interest to your TV area doesn’t have to run you the big bucks. If you follow along on Instagram, you may remember Tasha and I venturing out to one of our favorite thrift stores in Minneapolis, The Salvation Army (North Loop) to look for accessories. With thrifting, you don’t always know what you’re going to find, so we didn’t have specific pieces we were necessarily looking for, we just knew we wanted to add height and texture on either side of the TV and something low slung to hide the Apple TV.

P.S. Are you not dying over Tasha’s vintage plaid dress?! BECAUSE I AM!

Back at my house, we used a combination of our thrifted finds, vintage pieces from Tasha’s Chairish shop, and a few new, store bought elements to turn this sad, naked TV corner into a happily dressed media center. Here are Tasha’s fast and friendly tips to pull everything together:

  • Start with Greenery for Height and Texture – On the right of the TV, we’ve used two low maintenance plants in matching plant stands that we found thifting. Plants add a wonderful organic texture and stands give the plants a nice height boost.
  • Use a Low Slung Piece Below the Mounted TV – If you have small electronics like an Apple TV that can’t be hidden within a cabinet, use a long and low decorative piece like our wooden horse to keep it out of plain sight.
  • Conceal Electronic Cords – Ikea cord covers are less than $10 and can be painted to match your wall color. Done and done.
  • Stack Pretty Books for Height and Layering – To the left of the TV we’ve used 2 hardcover books as a platform for grouping accessories.
  • Use a Range of Materials and Textures – Marble, wood, brass, terra cotta and greenery all work together to create visual interest and draw your attention away from the TV.
  • Get Creative with Unlikely Storage – If your media console is wall mounted or up on legs, capitalize on the space underneath with book storage. They don’t need to be “cool” design books either. Here we’re using a mix of Erin’s college textbooks and new mama books!

See a piece you likey?  Wooden Horse Box | Marble & Brass Lamp | Matisse Print | Mala Beads | Pyramid Object | Embroidered Pouf | Media ConsoleTV Wall Mount

 

 

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In DIY

DIY du Jour: Media Consoles

My living room is one of those spaces that’s an enigma to space plan. It’s long and narrow, there needs to be a clear traffic flow from the front door to the dining room, it’s our main living space, and we own a sectional… Needless to say I’ve had the furniture in quite a few arrangements and after a year of living in our home, I think I’ve found a layout that works for us. I’ll make sure to share the solution we landed on once the room is put together!

Now that the dust has settled from the game of musical furniture we’ve been playing in our living room, I want to mount the tv on the wall (in true grown-up living room fashion), and so I’m on the hunt for a media console with more height to it than the train cart we’re currently using as our tv stand, which only measures about 15″ high. While doing some research to figure out whether to buy or DIY, I came across some do-it-yourself-er projects that not only have the look, but have the price too–many of them coming in around $100!

If you're in the market for a media console, have you considered saving hundreds of dollars by building one yourself?

There are some amazing DIY consoles out there: everything from refurbished vintage pieces, like this stenciled piece from The Painted Hive (pictured above) to built-from-scratch pieces modeled after higher end designs. Scroll on for more inspo.

If you're in the market for a media console, have you considered saving hundreds of dollars by building one yourself?

I love the simple industrial lines of this media console from Pottery Barn, which retails for around $1200. I’m all for quality design, but if it doesn’t work in the budget, why not roll up your sleeves and make it yourself! Ana White shows us how to make a similar version here for around $100! Photo via Pottery Barn.

 

If you're in the market for a media console, have you considered saving hundreds of dollars by building one yourself?

Amber Interior Design’s DIY credenza has instinctively given me heart eyes since the tutorial came out, and I keep going back to it for our space because of it’s clean modern lines softened by that genius wood top that also really finishes off the design. Simply stunning.

 

 
If you're in the market for a media console, have you considered saving hundreds of dollars by building one yourself?

Ana White shares her take on creating a rustic modern media console inspired by the West Elm piece shown here. Build this bad boy yourself for under $100! Photo via West Elm.

Want more? Find more in the DIY du Jour Series here!

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