Covering Up AC Units

I often get requests to build one-offs for family, friends and others in the know.  Most of the time they as k me to replicate a shelf, table, coat hanger or something else they saw in a catalog or online that costs thousands of dollars.  They first ask if I have the capabilities, and I give them an honest answer, then ask how much it will cost.  If I am up for the job, have the time and find it interesting enough - I will take it on.

My most recent request came from a friend needing an interesting cover for a ugly AC unit permanently sticking out of a wall.  This is not something I had worked on before so I took up the challenge.

ac unit cover

As you can see - not too pretty to be staring at all year long when the AC is not in use.  Speaking of ACs not in use, I didn't turn on either of my ACs all summer long last year.  Sure there was a day or two that had me sleeping in a starfish shape that I perfected in a Panamanian hostel, but it is better to suffer through one night than go closing all the windows in the house.  

Anyway, I am digressing - the point here is covering up an AC unit isnt that hard with a few tools, wood and imagination.  I used 2 X2s as the outer frame, then layered in scraps of wood from the shop.  First I laid it all out as I imagined in my head, then went to town securing it with my nail gun.  I was going to glue at first, but figured this would be a more permanent solution.  After some work - this is what I came up with.

covering up AC unit

Admittedly very unlike anything I had made before, in terms of the actual physical thing and design wise, but I was happy with it.  Using scrap wood, metal I think it came out like a abstract piece of art - but how would Victoria feel about it? 

She came and picked up the piece while I was away and think she was initially hesitant about it at first.  Then she sent me pics.

Honestly - I was blown away.  Prior to this photo I had not seen the interior, the rug, the radio - nothing and had built the AC cover as I had imagined it in my head - but this absolutely worked in the room.  It matches the rug perfectly.  I am typically not overwhelmingly happy with how anything I make comes out - but this, this one is different, an absolute perfect fit.


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