sliding display panels to disguise utility panels while leaving them accessible
Photo: Charles Walton
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Pretty Up the Place for Parties

Electrical panels, thermostats, big switch plates—they're household necessities, but they're also eyesores that can thwart your decorating efforts. Using sliding display panels will keep them accessible but under wraps so guests won't have to see them. Make these panels with two-track hardware and wheels (available at Stanley Hardware), as shown, or use a sliding-door kit instead.

The How-to:

1. Pick up a kit with bypass tracks that are wall-mountable (also called "face-fixed"). Install the tracks above and below the area you wish to cover.

2. Cut two equal pieces of panel board to size. Coat one with chalkboard paint; cover the other with self-stick corkboard.

3. Use the door hardware to affix one panel to each track so that they can slide behind each other.

Reminder: Before you start, be sure you have enough space to slide the panels out of the way to access what's behind them.
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