What can I do with this alcove?

by LinneaSanchez

Low awkwardly placed alcoves for TVs/media devices were popular for new construction homes in the early 2000s. I desperately want to update it. Since of course our tv is mounted. Pic below is how the alcove looks currently. All ideas appreciated.

  13 answers
  • Is your room formal? How about installing shelves for a bookcase or display items? It is deep, you could add doors and use for odd or bulky items that you might want out of sight.

  • DesertRose DesertRose on Mar 16, 2019

    Have you considered putting in shelves and cabinet doors for more storage of family board games or books? Since you may not need to get into it often, you could store anything you need that might include punch bowls and other supplies such as table clothes etc. Anyone can use more storage and doors on it would hide the stored items.

  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Mar 16, 2019

    I'd frame in and add doors.

  • FrugalFamilyTimes.com FrugalFamilyTimes.com on Mar 16, 2019

    Is there another on the other side? Or just one?

    i like the answer above of putting doors on it - you could make doors like we did and hide electronics or whatever. https://www.frugalfamilytimes.com/2019/01/diy-media-cabinet-built-in.html

    Another initial idea is to find a beautiful antique dresser to slide into the space.

  • Gk Gk on Mar 16, 2019

    My first thought is to install shelves or a closed unit with doors! Or a good place for a doggie room!

  • Phaedra Phaedra on Mar 17, 2019

    I cant see the whole room to see scale so Im just tossing out some ideas here.

    Adding doors and then shelves above is one idea. You could also add doors above for a large built in cupboard.

    You could pretend theres a doorway to another room and install a real door and frame. Do shelves behind or a pole for extra coats etc. If theres a door/opening on the other side of the fire place you could mimic that opening to balance things it out.

    Another idea would be to remove everything back to the walls. Take out that horizontal piece and make the window side flush. This would give you an open alcove. You could do built in shelves or a free standing shelf unit. Would also be a nice place for a small free standing cupboard. You might also be able to get a comfy upholstered chair there by the fireplace.

    • LinneaSanchez LinneaSanchez on Mar 17, 2019

      Thank you Phaedra! I’d love to remove the entire wall and move the fireplace to another wall. But to get my husband on board would be like drawing blood from stone lol.

  • LinneaSanchez LinneaSanchez on Mar 17, 2019

    Here’s a full picture of the room. On the other side of the fireplace/alcove/cutout wall is our formal living room

    comment photo
    • Phaedra Phaedra on Mar 17, 2019

      I hate to say this but that is one weird fireplace wall. Its really visually distracting. Im not sure you can move it. If that's a bearing wall some of that crazy bracing might be structural. Also Im guessing the fireplace is gas. In other words is that a real chimney or just a vent above the fireplace.

      Now that Ive seen the room I think I would just upgrade the fireplace where it is.

      The first thing you need to know is that cross beam above the clock structural. If its not remove it and the lower one and clean up the resulting alcove.

      If its structural add framing and drywall across that whole wall to make the wall flat and even up the opening I would make or buy a proper mantel for the fireplace.

      In either case I would make the fireplace and its "chimney" a slight bump out. Faux stone for your faux chimney would make a nice focal point for your room..

      As for shelving maybe you could tap in from the other room?

  • Kim Kim on Mar 17, 2019

    If you dont have a good use for the alcove but do use the fireplace then why not bring firewood indoors. Make the alcove storage for firewood. It will keep it dry and ready for burning when your ready for using the fireplace. If it is not woodburning of course this will not work.

  • LinneaSanchez LinneaSanchez on May 15, 2020

    Added some shiplap wallpaper and rustic corbels(from Hobby Lobby), a little bench and stuff we already had. A simple fix to our awkward alcove

    comment photo
    • RMIndiana RMIndiana on Jan 11, 2021

      Turned out beautifully! I just joined, so looking forward to advising on these kinds of projects!

  • Barb Barb on May 15, 2020

    After seeing the entire room, stunning by the way. I would add a backing to the upper open area and add doors below so it looks as a built in bookcase, this way it’s a whole focal point, or just add the doors below, but be sure to keep it with the same paint used before.

  • Deb K Deb K on Jan 11, 2021

    Hello, one other idea is to put a small desk in there to use is as a mini office,


  • Cynthia H Cynthia H on Mar 10, 2021

    Hi! A drop down desk would be fabulous in that space!

  • I'm a sucker for simple and cozy. A wire basket with logs would look so cute without adding clutter.