In home construction, it often seems that little thought is given to the placement of such utilitarian items as circuit panels and thermostats. These necessary but less than attractive elements are often plunked into the centre of the first open wall the builder sees. I am fortunate that in my condo some forethought was given to these elements and my circuit panel is tucked behind the door in my walk-in closet; my thermostat is placed on a short, out-of-the-way wall. My friend Robert, however, is less fortunate in his condo, so he developed a couple of clever concealers for these design eyesores.
As one enters Robert’s west-end Vancouver home, one is greeted with some fantastic original photography (Robert’s own from a trip to Antarctica) and a sculptural mask (picked up on a trip to Paraguay). But little do guests know that behind these art pieces lurk the circuit panel and thermostat. The photo frame is securely hung with a wooden cleat screwed to the wall. The mask, which has enough cut-outs to ensure good airflow for accurate temperature control, is hung on a screw and surrounded by an open frame (no glass). Robert painted the wall behind the frame a white colour in contrast to the main wall colour to further enhance the effect.