When my husband and I got a new flat-screen television for Christmas, it meant moving some things around the living room. We no longer needed the huge corner cabinet that our old behemoth of a 36″ tube television used to sit on. Instead, we got to switch to a delicate and lovely sofa table that was sitting mostly unused in the office. I loved the way the television looked on it, and all of the audio/video components fit so nicely on the shelf. And then I realized something. The cords had nowhere to hide! This pretty table sits up off the floor and the cords were running everywhere, and making an absolute mess.
I mean, just look at it! I already know how nicely this is going to end, and it still pains me to see the mess in this picture.
All I needed to get it under control were a couple of decorative boxes and some ties. For the boxes, I used two very inexpensive NOSTALGISK boxes from IKEA. You can use any box you want, as long as it has a removable lid and you can cut a hole in the back. I especially liked these not only for their size and color, but for the clear plastic window. (You’ll see why in a minute.) For the ties, you can use anything you can find that will help you corral your cords. I used a combination of rubber bands, wire twist ties, pipe cleaners, and Command cord organizer clips.
Then it was time to cut a hole in one of my boxes. This is where that little plastic window came in so handy! I just used the blade from a pair of scissors to cut a cross in the plastic, which made it super easy for cords to get in and out. If your box doesn’t have a window like this, just cut a hole in it with a knife. It just has to be big enough to fit your largest cord through.
Then I plopped my surge protector into the box, ran the cord through the hole in the back, and plugged it in to the wall outlet. (By the way, if you don’t have a decent surge protector — not just a power strip — please go buy one. It’s the best investment you can make to protect your television and equipment!) Then I just started feeding the cords from all the other components through the hole in the back of the box, bundling the extra length with ties, and plugging them into the surge protector.
As I did this, I also took care to organize and sort all the cables behind the equipment. I used a combination of ties to keep everything together and tidy, and most importantly — off the floor. Everything was bundled as much as possible, and it all ended up going through the hole in the back of the box. Even things that didn’t need to be plugged in had their excess cords shoved in. Here’s a before and after. Pretty amazing difference, right?
Here’s what the box of cables looked like when everything was shoved inside. All I had to do was put the lid on and then never look at them again! And, they not only stay out of site, but they stay clean, too!
I only needed one box to hold all the cables, so I used the other one to hold random television-related things like an extra remote, the manual, and my old Nintendo 64 gaming system. I just love how everything is so neat and tidy now!
But my favorite part is underneath. Look! Not a cord in sight, which means that I can actually sweep under here, too!