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Flat screens go from nightmare to decor dream

To a movie buff, a flat screen television can be a beautiful thing, but to a decorator it can be their worst nightmare.

To a movie buff, a flat screen television can be a beautiful thing; But to a decorator it can be their worst nightmare. Trying to incorporate a TV into a room (especially a small space) can be difficult as it is instantly made the focal point of a room.


If you must live with your television front and centre like I do, then there area few designer rules to follow:


Incorporating a black television into your decor scheme: If the black television is the only black object in the room, then it will stand out like a sore thumb. I suggest adding a few other dark-toned decorative items to the room, like black picture frames, curtain rods, lampshades or small furnishings. The more black that gets added around the room, the less obvious our flat screens will be.

Choose the right size television for the room: The screen should be a comfortable distance for viewing. You should sit eight to nine feet away from a 32” screen, 10 to 12 feet away from a 42” screen, 13 to 14 feet away from a 50” screen. Purchase a flat screen television that reflects the size of the room, not your ego, boys!

Hanging the television at regular picture height is too high:
The middle of the television screen should be between 42-52 inches from the floor as opposed to artwork, which should be hung at 66 inches (from floor to middle). If you hang your television higher, then you will require an angle bracket to tilt the television to your eye level.

Don’t compete with the fireplace: The television should be three to eight inches above the mantle (this rule is the same as if you were hanging a painting or mirror over a mantle, as well). For good proportion, the television should be approximately 3/4 the width of the mantle. Anything smaller will look puny and anything larger will overshadow the fireplace.

TV stand favourites: The Vista pedestal from CasaLife (casalife.com, $850) turns your flat screen into a modern sculpture. Perfect for small spaces or placing a television in front of window. The Country Pine Console from Sears (sears.ca, $480) is a long, low pine cupboard which will house your television, but also offers up a ton of storage. It will add casual country charm to a room and the extra storage is great.

Designer Tip


The wall the flat screen hangs on is the perfect wall to paint a focal paint colour. Deep-toned colours like charcoal grey or chocolate brown will help to create less contrast between the black television and the wall, making the television visually disappear in the room. Dark colours also add drama to the room.

– Karl Lohnes is passionate about good decor and wants to help you have a beautiful home; no matter what your budget or style. Catch him on CTV’s Canada AM