Flaunt your cables and make your wires into a work of art
TAKE a look underneath a desk in most offices and. apart from a pair of legs, you’ll find a pile of spaghetti. Not the Italian pasta but a tangled mess of cables and wires, often covered in thick dust, that are necessary for the paraphernalia of a modern commercial environment.
In the home, under a computer or behind a television, the picture’s much the same. Aerial leads and DVD cables twist together with speaker wires, telephone flexes and all the “spaghetti” needed to power up a normal living room.
Even those of us with “WiFi” wireless set-ups, still need power cables as well as chargers for mobile phones, cameras, iPods, iPads and the like. With all the added gadgetry of satellite and cable boxes, computer games stations and music systems, let alone a simple table lamp to help you see what you’re doing, the “spaghetti” sometimes seems to be taking over the home.
The trouble is that we want everything to look neat and orderly with concealed wiring yet easy access if any change is required. There are a host of gizmos that will help our cable management ranging from discreet holes or flaps in the back of cabinets to all manner of hooks, clips and tubes that look like the vertebrae of snakes,
Many of them are about as effective as a bulldog clip or an old fashioned clothes peg but while they tidy up the “spaghetti” none get rid of the problem – all those wires.
One of the problems is that rooms often don’t have enough plug sockets. Even when there are enough, they’re invariably in the wrong place. You then need an extension cable with a fourway adaptor and that means yet another cable and you run the risk of tripping over the wires as well.
Homes have far more appliances than ever before and the way we use rooms has also changed. Multi-functional space, especially in quite small homes, often replaces more prescriptive room definitions (dining, sitting, study etc.). Fitting extra plug sockets is a veritable nightmare. First of all there’s the disruption and mess caused by breaking into and then chasing out walls. Then the new wiring needs to be connected into the circuits, which may require alterations to the main fuse board.
Then comes replastering and redecorating and a wall can end up looking so war-torn that the whole room requires a matching face-lift.
There are, however, alternatives. In 1955, Le Corbusier showed that exposing wiring (and pipes for that matter) in the Heidi Weber Pavillion could be used as a decorative feature, especially when they were highlighted in contrasting colours. Instead of trying to hide your wires, embrace them, draw inspiration from them and draw attention to them. In this picture, the orange cables stand out against a grey wall and complement the exposed brickwork with an engaging curly pattern.
It’s also a lot easier to redeploy if you ever need to change the room layout. So, don’t be a spaghetti maker, go out and flaunt your wires.
CONNECTION: Put wires to work.