Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Ease of the Folding Screen

It’s time for another installment of one of my favorite things. Items under this label are stylish and easy to incorporate into your homes while, at the same time, making a big impact.
Today, I want to share some thoughts on folding screens. Of course, these have been around forever, but the options for folding screens are endless these days. First, let me tell you why I love them. Folding screens can instantly give a room a focal point, hide unsightly views, visually divide an open space, add a bit of architecture, can create a headboard for your bed, and most importantly, set up in a minute!

I have found that another great use for screens or room dividers is to separate the entrance way into a large room; sort of giving you an instant foyer. A lot of homes have you walking right into the living room, and I personally, prefer a little buffer between my living space and the front door. Pop up a screen there and maybe add a plant in front of it to differentiate between your entryway and the living room.

Folding screens come in countless varieties. If you’re a DIYer, you might choose homemade ones with simple solid pieces of wood, or for a casual look, simply hinge three large house shutters together. Here is a how-to courtesy of This Old House:

Of course, screens are also available in rich finishes and exotic woods, but you don’t have to spend a lot to achieve the same look.

Folding screens come in all shapes, sizes and prices, so there is definitely one out there in your budget and style.

Let me first talk about some more ideas for inexpensive folding screens. Again, they will all be hinged with simple hinges with at least 3 panels each. Here are some objects that will make great folding screens:

Hollow core doors (or paneled closet doors), house shutters, reclaimed wood, lattice, fabric panels stretched across a simple wood frame, large mirrors, large wooden windows…well, you get the idea. Basically, anything that is somewhat sturdy, is tall enough for your use, and can be hinged, will work! If you’re artistic (and I just KNOW that you are) you can paint a mural, stencil, etc, on the screen for an even more custom look.

Now, if you’re in a hurry or just not feeling that crafty, just buy yourself one already made. Again, folding screens come in all shapes, sizes and prices, so there is definitely one out there in your budget and style. There are even "screens" made of dried branches and plants. They don't hide very much, but visually, are beautiful.

Elle Décor recently did a spread on the "Top 10" favorite folding screens. Here are some images from that feature:

So look around and see if there is an area in your home that needs some pizazz or something that just needs to be hidden.  Either way, a folding screen will be your best friend.
'Till Next Time....

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