Asked on Jan 25, 2015

What to do with old built in for TV?

by Erin
Any suggestions on what to do with the old built in to the right of the TV? We couldn't see the TV from the left side of room so added it above fireplace. I'm just at a loss for how to handle what is left. Thank you!!
I'm thinking to drywall down to cabinet doors (which must stay due to TV boxes). I'm open to suggestions....
  23 answers
  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on Jan 25, 2015
    Gut it, outfit with shelves and paint the whole works to match the walls. If you want to go an extra step, add some low-watt indirect lighting. The space could become an area for keepsakes and memorabilia. Looks like the framed art on the wall to the left of the fireplace might have other components that could use a display area.
  • Funnygirl Funnygirl on Jan 25, 2015
    How about a bar?
  • Letty Letty on Jan 25, 2015
    I would turn it into a bookshelf and make blend into the wall. I would put videos and stuff like that on it.
  • ..I am not one of those that like the whole " flat-screen- over -the fireplace-thing"...but that being said, I agree with Swan Road Designs in reference to the paint color, paint it out the same as wall color, and that will help a great deal. And the frames on the wall are somewhat a ' distraction' , perhaps rearranging them would be helpful. ...More of a ' gallery style " or something along those lines.
  • Angelique Cantu Angelique Cantu on Jan 25, 2015
    Pull it out and add sheetrock to cover the hole.
  • Linda 4 Real Linda 4 Real on Jan 26, 2015
    A elegant beverage center/Bar. I got loads of compliments and friends decided to do the same. I had used a lot of cute design tricks, so if interested please ask and ill post some details. 9ie I used upside down wine glass racks attached to top for form and function and for splurge You can pit a wine fridge in one side of cabinet below and remove door. please ask if interested in more of this design details
    • Diane  Franco Diane Franco on Sep 22, 2017

      Can u email pix of ur bar nook. I'm at Thx a bunch!!

  • Aanu Aanu on Jan 26, 2015
    I made a box with one shelf and two separate door to open outside. Doors are 10" inside, so I could keep my books in front to hide doors and a place to keep my little knick knacks, whereas boxes inside holds decorations for the festivals, right in living room, without being visible. ...
  • Lori Lori on Jan 26, 2015
    I would pull out the tv and finish the inside, move the doors up to the shelf where the tv sits now and have a shelf above that. It looks like a wood burning fireplace so fill the bottom with wood and definitely paint it out. The other thing of course is copy it on the other side which would balance out the fireplace. The whole wall looks out of balance, I agree, and at the very least drop the pictures down level with built in and maybe that will help balance. Good luck, you will get there.
  • Debbe Debbe on Jan 26, 2015
    First off your fire place needs a mantle it looks unfinished.I would like what Swan Road Designs and shelbybella both said paint it the same as the walls.Make the mantle a dark color to have it pop.I would decorate with movies then something with the colors from your furniture to tie it all together.
  • Tracy Tracy on Jan 26, 2015
    I would purchase a wall mounted tv bracket with a swing arm. We have one and our tv can swing out 14 inches from the wall and swivel side to side. I would put it back in the cabinet. It looks like a great cabinet. We needed one because we have old built ins where the depth of the cabinet was built for an old tube tv. Your fireplace would look great with a mantle on it. You then need something with height or bulk on the left side of the fireplace. It looks like your couch is at an angle - maybe straightening that out and placing an end table with tall lamp. I like the pictures but I think the collage is on the wrong wall.
  • Mcgypsy9 Mcgypsy9 on Jan 26, 2015
    I would pull it out and sheet rock it closed and it would give you room over ther to add another chair and you could move your furniture in other designs.
  • Janet Manger Janet Manger on Jan 26, 2015
    I would add some shelves in the top and paint the whole thing the same color as your woodwork in the same finish (paint) which looks like glossy? that would make it look as if it was planned in the first place. Many homes have built-in book shelves in/around the fireplace and this could look the same. If you put some colorful books, family pictures, favorite pieces, no one would notice it that much when you get it filled. but they will what you put in it. There is no 'right' way to finish a home, it should reflect the personality of the owner. The only thing that matters is if you like it. Good luck!
  • Erin Erin on Jan 26, 2015
    Thank you! These are all ideas we've discussed and so now I guess we have to decide. I'm aware of the lack of a's on the list, but until we decided on what to do with the awkward space, we weren't going to conquer that. I appreciate it!
    • Ann Ann on Jan 26, 2015
      @Erin Yes, add taller built-ins/bookcases etc. (to both sides) to balance it out. However, why not remove the frame and doors, then hinge your built-in on the right to swing open and you would have a secret area for papers, jewlery, etc.? The space is deep enough that you can bolt in a firesafe. I have seen this done, and you can't tell it's even there.
  • Nicole MT Nicole MT on Jan 26, 2015
    Either use it as a bookshelf by adding shelves and lighting, Or as a built in bar: Convert the bottom storage with a mini fridge and wine fridge / rack; turn the holes for the DVD player etc into utensil storage and trays for lemons / limes / salt etc.; add glass shelves above for glassware and liquor; and add lighting for the cabinet so when you have a party it draws attention. If you have children, add glass doors with a lock to close it off. As for painting it to match the walls, that's on you. You have your picture gallery to balance the visual, but honestly, I feel like you need someone above it. The tall ceilings are awesome but you could use a taller shelf there or some artwork above it.
  • Erin Erin on Jan 26, 2015
    You all are great. We can't add a matching bookcase on the other side of the fireplace as the wall isn't that deep. Anything there would be faux. That wast original thought but after investigating, nothing symmetrical can be accomplished here. That's been a big frustration of mine!
  • Don Don on Jan 26, 2015
    I would decrease its depth by half, turn it into a dry bar, put hinges on it and have a secret storage space behind it.
  • LibrarianTellsAll LibrarianTellsAll on Jan 26, 2015
    Oh man, the built-in is awkwardly close to the fireplace. And the traditional molding on the built-in doesn't match with the style of your art or the stone fireplace. :( Since the cabinets have to stay to hold the TV boxes, I'd pull out everything ABOVE the cabinets and sheet rock above them to create a solid wall, with just the built-in cabinets down there in the corner. Then I'd paint them black to match the picture frames. Finally, I'd create symmetry by doing another black and white gallery wall over the cabinet.
  • Roy Wilson Roy Wilson on Jan 26, 2015
    Book case and curio cabinet
  • Cheryl @ Artzzle Cheryl @ Artzzle on Jan 28, 2015
    What if you were to enclose it (drywall and trim out) down to a level even with the top of your fireplace; then paint it the same as your wall; then put one piece all the way across both the fireplace and the opening top; creating sort of a mantle, a finishing piece that would connect the two areas. If possible, you even have enough wall space to duplicate the cabinet on the blank side of the fireplace. Adjoin all three into a well-balanced unit. If you don't have space behind your wall, you could make a faux cabinet front there.
  • Kris LaFavers Johnston Kris LaFavers Johnston on Jan 29, 2015
    I would close in the top half of it. Take the doors off of the lower half and use it to stack your fire wood in. Unless you don't want your wood to show then leave the doors on but you would have to make sure the pieces were cut small enough to fit.
  • Diana Deiley Diana Deiley on Mar 18, 2016
    Remove what you need to and dry wall flush to wall. Paint everything the same color as the existing wall color to have it "disappear" into the wall.
  • Fiona Loper Fiona Loper on Mar 26, 2016
    paint the trim black, the inside white, add shelves and perhaps a false back and turn the top half into a bookcase or curio shelves