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Hiding your Appliances

Whether you’re going for a sleek, minimal look in the kitchen or just looking to tone down an increasingly gadget-heavy vibe, one of the ways to rein in the steel surfaces and digital faceplates is to hide your appliances.

If what’s on your home-makeover menu includes bringing your culinary space back down to Earth, then here are a number of tricks for tucking away your appliances.

Changeable Fronts:

One of the hottest trends in appliance concealment is the changeable front. Rather than a stainless steel, aluminum, or plastic front to your refrigerator, dishwasher, or microwave, why not an oak, maple, or cherry front? Stone fronts are also available if matching granite or marble facing is what it takes to re-fit your kitchen with flowing, uniform textures. Check out this example of how it works, via Canadian House & Home.


Wood paneling works, sure, but just like wood did you know that you can paint a refrigerator almost any way you like? Remove exterior handles and tape over any panels or ice stations with the same material you’d use on molding and windowsills when painting wood, drywall, or plaster. Then, per these instructions at, wash and sand your surface and then paint with a urethane-reinforced enamel, such as melamine paint.


Hiding appliances that aren’t part of a surrounding surface (flush with your cabinetry), requires something that redirects the eye’s sense of shape and color in directions away from “toaster,” “microwave oven,” or “blender.” As Isaiah David, at eHow’s Home blog, suggests, start with the sheath and the cozy – heatproof, of course – and choose patterns and textures that either match or compliment the surfaces and hues of your home’s space. Even a change as simple as adding flowers to a counter space near some large gadget can help de-emphasize and camouflage what seems like a clunky counter component. And there’s no reason that a hip fabric sheath can’t transform a refrigerator door into something more like a decoration than just another icebox.

Go Primitive:

David also suggests some wild alternatives to the usual appliance-tucking measures. A half-barrel can conceal the food processor; a hollowed-out Turkish or Russian samovar transforms the plastic and glass coffeemaker into something redolent of Old World charm.

Got an appliance-camouflage tip of your own?

Hit us up with the hippest hiding tactics you’ve discovered, and help your fellow readers cut back on control-panels and the cold, hard look of today’s modern appliances.

By James O’Brien

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