DIY Decorating Around a Flat Screen Television

I've had some stuff I've wanted to frame for a while now but never got around to doing it.  And...I had a super blank wall in the room I like to read in.  I have a television in there that I use to binge watch programs The Robinator doesn't want to watch like "Parenthood" and listen to music.  The room is comfortable and I've been finishing it slowly.  

That blank wall is opposite my mirror gallery and behind the television.  

Have I mentioned that I hate how televisions take up a wall?  Like...there never seems to be anything interesting about the wall the television is in front of.  I've seen where interior designers put a lot of art on the wall behind the television and I kind of liked that.  Then...I thought about other stuff that I like too and decided to make a mixed media wall.

Our friends, Kenny and Booth, have an amazing home.  Not because it's like this grand estate or anything (even though it is), but because everything in it has a story.  Anything your eyes light on has a unique history and story.  Walking through their home with one of them is like a cultural personalized museum tour and I love that everything has a story behind it.  They didn't just roll up to a furniture store and buy a matching living room set.  Every piece is unique and personalized to their personalities and the way they live their life.  They have fascinating art and bits of all sorts of amazing things to look at.  It's like a sensory party that you never want to leave. I could sit in their great room for hours and hours perfectly content.

And that's what I want.  I want spaces and things with personal and unique stories.  This room is the first one that I'm doing that way just to see how well it fairs and I am loving it so far.  I can't wait until I decide on window treatments because that will mean that I am finally finished with it as I've said they will be the last things I do in each room.

Michael's was having a 50% off sale on their wall frames so I picked up some of them for the vintage musical programs and art that I had.  I made a tray at an Annie Sloan paint techniques class I attended, did a canvas using stencils and added two wood pieces that I did myself.

The first one was an address sign with 13700 on it.  All my happiest memories in life so far were made at 13700.  It's where my husband and I first started out as a married couple and where we just grew into who we are.  It's where my family, framily and friends gathered all the time and where I've circled infertility, learned how to be settled and really just grew up.  

The second one is made from handwritten sheet music from a musical in the early 1900s.  "Swing Low," "Were You There?" and "Deep River."  I bought this years ago with the other pieces in Maryland.  

The tray was a fun time and I enjoyed meeting the ladies and learning about different painting techniques. So there is a story behind it too.  The vases were made using dollar store vases and dots and tape to create a design and then spray paint.  

I love the way it has all come together.  It's visually interesting and the television is no longer the focal point of the wall.  I even have room to add more pieces should I ever decide to.  I like that I decided to use the whole wall instead of just up high above the television.  

We Finally Found the BEST Digital Antenna and Cut the Cable Cord!

It should be noted that we would have probably never taken the leap had we not moved. Just keeping it real.

The Robinator and I moved into our temporary digs and only set up the internet.  We decided that we'd finally, FINALLY cut the cord to cable!  I was excited because paying for a crapload of channels we don't watch really irked me greatly so I've been wanting to do this for over two years now.  Robby, on the other hand, found it difficult to let go of his total access to all sports all the time.  Because of this, I didn't think he'd ever go for it even though month-after-month paying that $250 Verizon Fios bill really annoyed him too.

But pay it we did.

We only have two televisions with us.  One in the living room and one in our bedroom.  

The one in the living room is a smart tv so it already had apps set up we could use when connected to the internet.  The bedroom tv isn't a smart tv so we use our Chromecast to watch television on it for now.  I'm going to buy an antenna for it too since I now know the best one to get.

The apps we use on our living room television are Netflix, HuluPlus, CNBC, Time, USA Today, BBC News, and Pandora.  We have more but those are the ones we use mostly.  

Now...the problem was network television and well...I need my "Scandal."  I could watch "Blackish" the next day, but I enjoy watching Olivia Pope while interacting online with our awesome group!  GO US!  So...I tried 4 different digital antennas to see which one would get ALL the DTV network channels available.  Seriously...I kept buying and returning them.  One I got 0 channels.  Seriously.  Nada.  LOL!  The next one, I got 6 channels but not ABC.  The next I got 7 channels but not CBS (I love CBS Sunday Morning.) and the next one, after scouring the internets for advice and reviews, I got 26 channels!  TWENTY SIX!  And that includes all the major networks and a whole lot of other channels I've heard of and some local ones I've never heard of.  I'm currently sitting here watching Shanti Lowry on the Bounce TV station.  GO SHANTI!!!!!!!!!!!!!  She's my favorite.  LOL!

The antenna is pretty cool in that it's super thin.  The cord is really long so you can play around with placing it properly to get the best reception.  Apparently you can paint over it so that it can blend in with the wall but I don't want to do that.  I hate the cord and am trying to hide it as much as possible but hey...I can only do so much now.  I'm considering moving it behind the mirror above the mantle so we can't see it but I'd still have to deal with the cord issue.  Needless to say...this battle might not be won.  I'm hoping that once I finish decorating the wall behind the television and the mantle...it will be much less obvious.

We are EXTREMELY happy with our decision to finally not be cable's witch with a b.  I was soooooooooooooo sick of cable and the stuff on cable that it annoyed me beyond reason.  With all of the streaming options we have plus the new one we pre-ordered and are waiting for:

All total we've spent about $120 plus monthly fees for Netflix and HuluPlus which come to about $16 a month.  And honestly...we would have those even if we have cable because we enjoy bing watching shows together on the sofa.  I was going to get rid of Amazon Prime but I can't now since I'll be using Amazon Prime Pantry and Subscriptions for shopping more than ever now because of my current local limited shopping options.  So yeah...would have had that anyway too.  No matter what I'm spending however...it's less than even one month of what I was paying Verizon Fios (it should be noted that we had a bundle, internet, phone and all the premium channels except the nekkid ones).

Let me know if you try out that antennae.  It's seriously a case of I tried 4 so you don't have to.  LOL!  Hope it helps you kick the cable habit too!

Smooches!