arranging furniture without TV as centerpiece - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 13 Old 05-31-2011, 11:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
petey44's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 176
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

We are moving July 1 and will be going (mainly) tv-free at that point.  I've been doing a lot of thinking about furniture and belongings in relation to packing, setting up the new place, etc, and one of the things that is proving to be a sticking point is what to do without the TV as a focal point.  We currently have a large (maybe 32 inch- I dont know, it was a hand me down) TV in our living room and a smaller (maybe 19 inch- also a hand me down) in the bedroom. 

My plan is to get rid of the big TV because it's just too big and unwieldy, and keep the little TV in the living room for netflix movies, etc.  But it just seems ridiculous to position the furniture around this tiny little TV that will get used, what, maybe twice a week?  But then where do we put the TV so that we can see it when we want to?  We can't stick it in a corner behind the couch, that wouldn't make sense.

So for those of you that use a TV for movie viewing or similar at most a few times a week, how do you arrange the TV in relation to the rest of the furniture?  I know that going TV-free will be difficult for both DH and I at times, and I really don't want it sitting front and center as a temptation- I'd rather provide easy access to games, books, crafts, etc.

petey44 is offline  
#2 of 13 Old 06-01-2011, 06:30 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've been trying & trying to go TV-free but my health issues make it tough!! We keep our one small TV in our bedroom. I like this because when I'm not feeling well, I can go in there & close the door & not have the TV on as background for DH & DS. DS doesn't watch any TV so that was a big part of the decision, I didn't want it in his main play space, which is the living room. You could try something like that, and have movie nights with everyone piled on the bed?

We do have a computer in the living room (until we finish the bedroom that will probably serve as an office), so occasionally watch hulu out there if we manage to get DS to sleep alone for a short time. It doesn't look weird to have a small computer there, it's tucked into a corner and only really viewable from one couch if you sit sideways on it (more comfy than it sounds, and it's not like we have a bunch of us trying to watch at once or anything!) The couches are just facing each other, which is especially great when we have company! Or the other option, since it's a small TV anyway, is to tuck it away in a closet or TV armoire or whatever and just bring it out when you need it?

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#3 of 13 Old 06-02-2011, 04:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
petey44's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 176
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I had a friend when I was younger whose family kept the TV in the closet and only dragged it out for special reasons.  But that just seems so complicated- especially with all the cords related to hooking up a DVD player.  A new confounding factor- I just measured the depth of the little TV and even though it's little, it's still 18" deep.  Which means it won't fit on a bookcase or anything else I had in the back of my mind.  I'm seriously going to be upset if it turns out we still need a dedicated TV Stand and all that junk just for a TV we're barely going to use.

DD sleeps with us, so keeping the TV in the bedroom isn't really feasible.  We have one back there now because I can very easily watch a show on low volume with the captions on while she sleeps, but DH needs full volume to watch anything, so watching a movie back there after she goes to sleep wouldn't work. 

I really wish I could convince DH to just get rid of both TVs altogether and use the laptop for movie viewing, but I don't think he'll go for that.  Can't hurt to suggest, though, right?  Another thought I just had was that there's a large walk-in closet right off the living room in the new place- maybe I could get a little rolly cart that the TV and DVD player would stay on, hooked up together, and then it would just be a matter of rolling it out and plugging it in when we wanted it, and the roll it back into the closet when we're done?  Does that sound doable?

petey44 is offline  
#4 of 13 Old 06-02-2011, 04:48 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,501
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yeah, TV in the bedroom does have its drawbacks... I need to figure out if I can get closed captioning on our TV because then we *could* watch it after DS is asleep... Rolling cart sounds like a great idea!!! If it won't overtake a closet you need for other stuff.

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
#5 of 13 Old 06-03-2011, 09:11 PM
 
swede's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 563
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

one thing you could do (I did this before with a regular tv) is cover the screen with felt.  And have a felt board.  I just put some velcro along the top of the tv and hung felt there.  Then my kids could just put different felt stuff on it when they wanted to.  The TV was still out in the open, but not as noticeable.

 

ot you could just make a tv cozy

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/littlebirds/100574890/

swede is offline  
#6 of 13 Old 06-04-2011, 06:54 AM
 
onlyzombiecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Northeast Kansas
Posts: 7,383
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by petey44 View Post

I had a friend when I was younger whose family kept the TV in the closet and only dragged it out for special reasons.  But that just seems so complicated- especially with all the cords related to hooking up a DVD player.  A new confounding factor- I just measured the depth of the little TV and even though it's little, it's still 18" deep.  Which means it won't fit on a bookcase or anything else I had in the back of my mind.  I'm seriously going to be upset if it turns out we still need a dedicated TV Stand and all that junk just for a TV we're barely going to use.

DD sleeps with us, so keeping the TV in the bedroom isn't really feasible.  We have one back there now because I can very easily watch a show on low volume with the captions on while she sleeps, but DH needs full volume to watch anything, so watching a movie back there after she goes to sleep wouldn't work. 

I really wish I could convince DH to just get rid of both TVs altogether and use the laptop for movie viewing, but I don't think he'll go for that.  Can't hurt to suggest, though, right?  Another thought I just had was that there's a large walk-in closet right off the living room in the new place- maybe I could get a little rolly cart that the TV and DVD player would stay on, hooked up together, and then it would just be a matter of rolling it out and plugging it in when we wanted it, and the roll it back into the closet when we're done?  Does that sound doable?

 

I think a moving cart sounds great!

 

We have our tv in an armoire. It also stores all the dvd's, game system and video games. The doors close so everything is out of sight when we aren't using it.


 

 


Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)

onlyzombiecat is offline  
#7 of 13 Old 06-04-2011, 07:01 AM
 
Comtessa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 1,146
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Is there any way you can put the TV somewhere else altogether?  When I was growing up, we had a tiny room in the back of the house that was the TV-watching room.  It was basically just a couch and a TV, and it was unheated so when we wanted to watch TV, we'd have to turn on a space heater and get under blankets.  It worked great for minimizing screen time, because it made it so inconvenient.  (An extra room just for TV is a luxury that DH and I can't afford, though, so we're struggling with the same thing -- and DH's TV is so gigantic there is no way to hide it, unfortunately.  *Sigh*)  If there is a tiny extra room in the new place, you might want to consider making this the TV room rather than keeping the TV in the main living space.  You really don't need much space for a TV room -- even a walk-in closet might work.  I've seen a small enclosed second-story porch used this way, also basements are good for this.  (Not attics, though, they get way too hot!  I lived in one house that tried that; it really did not work.)  I like the idea of getting TV out of the main living (and sleeping) spaces in the house -- I think it dramatically cuts down on its use. 

 

If the TV has to go in the living room, they do make bookshelf/cabinets that are designed to be deep enough to hold (and hide) a TV.  You might be able to find one at a used-furniture store for a reasonable price.  I think they're worth the investment, personally.  I had a roommate who had one of these, and honestly, I think we opened the darn thing to watch it -- maybe twice?   

 

Lastly, you may want to consider parking the TV somewhere out-of-the-way and then moving the furniture to watch it.  Depending on how heavy your couch is, it might be easier to pick it up and turn it 45 degrees (or whatever) than to mess with all the cords, etc., necessary to plug in a TV/DVD/etc. combination.  A rolling cart might work, too -- even if you can't keep it in a closet, you could still keep it pushed in a corner until you want to use it.  Whatever you do, make sure the furniture faces in, not out  -- couches are for sitting to talk, not sitting to look at something else.  Just keep telling yourself that as you arrange it. 


I'm traveling the world with my kids without ever leaving home and blogging about it -- watch, taste, and share our adventures at TheGlobalStayCation.com!
Comtessa is offline  
#8 of 13 Old 06-06-2011, 10:37 PM
 
tree_hugger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 713
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I have a small LCD TV in our living room. It sits of a small TV stand pushed up against a wall, with the a cover I sewed over the tele. I screwed rolling castors under the coffee table so when we want to watch a movie I just swing the stand out from the wall so it faces the couch. I hope that makes sense!


Kath contented vegan mama to my trio of free-range boys
Permaculture Design Student & Wannabe Urban Homesteader
tree_hugger is offline  
#9 of 13 Old 06-06-2011, 10:38 PM
 
tree_hugger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 713
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I have a small LCD TV in our living room. It sits of a small TV stand pushed up against a wall, with the a cover I sewed over the tele. I screwed rolling castors under the coffee table so when we want to watch a movie I just swing the stand out from the wall so it faces the couch. I hope that makes sense!


Kath contented vegan mama to my trio of free-range boys
Permaculture Design Student & Wannabe Urban Homesteader
tree_hugger is offline  
#10 of 13 Old 06-09-2011, 07:32 AM
 
futuremamaheather's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Framingham, MA
Posts: 562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Our living room is shaped like a looooong rectangle. The fireplace is on one of the long sides of the rectangle, and a couch is on the other, facing the fireplace and surrounding bookshelves. A love seat is at a right angle to the sofa on one of the shorter sides, and the table that holds the TV and our stereo (the CD player is also our DVD player) is at a right angle to the sofa on the other shorter side. It's a small TV, and not front and center - the fireplace and books are the focal point of the room, and the setup has been great for family/social gatherings and conversation. We just aren't big TV people - we'll watch a show together (usually via hulu - we hook my laptop up to the TV for a slightly bigger screen and better audio) or a movie on the weekends - so we don't find it's presence in the living room to be a huge temptation. If it becomes a problem when our kiddos are aware of it as they get older, I'll probably just cover it with cloth or something like that.


I'm Heather, newly married (12/5/10) to James! partners.gif
We are currently "mama" and "papa" to Maisy cat.gif and soon... parents to BABY NEW YEAR 2012!! babyf.gifWe're happily planning a h20homebirth.gif and intend to femalesling.GIFbfinfant.gifdiaper.gif

futuremamaheather is offline  
#11 of 13 Old 06-12-2011, 05:59 AM
 
t2009's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Somewhere between here & there
Posts: 591
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by onlyzombiecat View Post

 

I think a moving cart sounds great!

 

We have our tv in an armoire. It also stores all the dvd's, game system and video games. The doors close so everything is out of sight when we aren't using it.


 

 


I also like the idea of a rolling cart, either in a closet or tucked into a corner with a cozy or cover of some sort.

 

We have ours in an armoire. It's nice because we can tuck the dvd player, stereo controls, dvds, etc. right in the armoire & then shut the doors. It works well for a deep tv. But it also takes up a lot of space... We normally watch tv on our computer anyway, so I'm also trying to convince DH to just get rid of everything... just simplify! We are moving & the thought of taking all this stuff with us is just driving me batty... But DH says: Where will I watch football?! He has a point, but I'm not sure taking the big armoire & big ol' tv half-way across the country is the best solution...

 

If sound is an issue for your DP, you could get a small set of speakers to hook up to your computer. Would still take up very little space.

 


Mama to my little busy bee. 

t2009 is offline  
#12 of 13 Old 06-15-2011, 07:04 AM
 
hildare's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: in-the-sticks-off-a-dirt-road, GA
Posts: 2,687
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

i don't know what's making me turn into a safety nerd but just jumping in to say if you do the rolling cart, there are lots of companies that make good tie-downs for them since lots of school media centers have them on the rollies that way.  make sure you tie it to the cart!  :)

we have ours in the bedroom in an armoire that can completely close.  i hate looking at the tv that is only used for movies, the cabinet is so much nicer.  there are disadvantages though-- like on the occasion that one might ever want to watch/do an exercise/yoga video, for example...


Is it getting lonely in the echo chamber yet?

hildare is offline  
#13 of 13 Old 07-01-2011, 01:12 AM
Banned
 
accountclosed3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 11,906
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

if you get a small TV cart on wheels, you might have your solution.

 

if the room is a square without a natural focal point (ie, fireplace or large window with lovely view, then you set it up for conversation around the central point. 

 

 

example: four 1.5 chairs in a circle with a circular coffee table. Two sofas facing each other with a chair or love seat at one end. piano on the long wall (becomes the focal point), and then sofas perpendicular to it, facing each other, with ottoman or coffee table.

 

then, you can just tuck the tv into a corner or into a closet and wheel it out when you use it.

 

we use our computer for DVDs -- it's a lap top. Keeps things simple. 

 

accountclosed3 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off