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Topic: fake window? Or other ideas for brick wall  (Read 3122 times)
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« on: December 12, 2005 12:17:07 AM »

Hi, I live in an apartment that has one brick wall. It's the kind of wall that you see in the older schools, really big concrete brick! I'm not allowed to paint it, but I am sick of looking at it. I was thinking of maybe putting a fake window on the wall, but I'm not sure how I would do it, any ideas? Or does anyone have any other ideas for what I could do to that wall. This wall is in my bathroom and my kitchen, btw. Tape won't stick to the bathroom wall because it gets way too steamy and since it's brick it's not like I can nail or pin things into it! If I come up with the right idea, I can pin or nail something from the ceiling that can hang in front of  the wall.
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2005 06:46:33 AM »

Hi there... okay, first of all 'brick' and 'concrete block' are two different things -- so I'm assuming you do mean concrete block?

First, I'd suggest you go to a large hardware store, &-or a DIY home improvement store (Home Depot, Lowe's, etc); look around for -- or if necessary ask about -- what could be used to put up or hang up things on concrete block. One way might involve some sort of drilling & specialty items -- but it's possible that there's also some sort of newer stick-on (but hopefully also removable) things from which you could hang somethng on the wall if desired.

Second ... maybe think about a few different ways you could make a hanging, *changeable-view* faux window .. ??

For example:
Once years ago, hub was idly glancing around an outdoor lumberyard sale & came across a window"like" something...
Just a fairly-lightweight rectangular wood frame made of what looked like wood molding. The whole thing was about 30" long by about 12" wide; the outer frame was about 2" wide all the way around .
The back of this thing was flat, & on the front there was one long narrow wood molding-like strip set vertically,two shorter ones spaced across that horizontally.

Much too lightweight to use for any window (we never did figure out exactly what it was really for) -- but in perfect condition, very nice finished wood, & priced at a dollar-fifty ... so hub bought it juuust in case he might need the wood for some future project [think 'morrre powerrrr' .. old tv comedy Home Improvement .. etc .. yep my hub & Tim are apparently twins separated at birth.. lolol].

But, in a couple of days he decided to make a wall-hung, changeable-view, faux window ...

Instead of glass, he used Plexiglass or clear acrylic (I'm not sure if those are same or which is lighter weight or what, but the idea was to have something lighter & less breakable than glass).
On the reverse he added a light easily-removable thin wood slide-able backing. More or less same as an ordinary photo frame, except a little stiffer & also with a little more space than that left between the plexiglass & the backing.

Then he picked out several European travel posters we'd had for ages. He chose those with realistic shots, of course, and only those with the right sort of 'perspective' to closely approximate a hotel window or apartment window view -- such as, looking across & far outward, or outward & downward, etc. 
Then he cut/trimmed the posters so that the 'views' filled the entire wooden frame, & he slid all 3 into the back.  Whenever we want a 'change of scenery' we just slip out whatever's showing & slide it behind the others.

[[[ >> Edited : forgot that he also lightly glue-tacked the scenes onto cardboard so there'd be no slipping or wrinkling or anything to spoil the sense of a 'real view'l -- which is also why he left a little more space bewteen the backing & the plexiglass than might otherwise be needed ... (think 'Virgo' there, lol ... sensible, organized, detail-oriented, allllways thinks of evvvverything!) ]]].

I'm sure you can think of several ways to create something similar ...
For example, for the 'window frame' -- plus the crossbars, if you want those -- you could try anything from  heavy cardboard/posterboard ... to the very-readily available,fairly cheap, also paintable plastic-like moldings ... to real wood molding (new, or salvaged, or whatever).

Or you could experiment with modifying some simple old wood frames you might already have around, or look for some at yard sales & flea markets & such.

You miiiight possibly even be able to use a real window [without the sliding-frame or other unnecessary 'working' parts] -- *IF* your ceiling joists/hooks/hanging material or whatever you hang it with would support that kind of weight. 
If not positive about that, you might want to consider removing any real glass first & replacing with clear acrylic/Plexi.  Or maybe spray your 'scenes' with glossy clear Krylon for a through-the- window-glass look.

Good luck -- let us know what you decide!

« Last Edit: December 12, 2005 07:00:24 AM by Ayn » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2005 06:43:17 PM »

You're right, it is concrete blocks. I saw in the finished projects that someone made a jewel case wall seperater so I might try to do one of those and just hang itat the very edge of the wall, instead of in the middle of a room. The other walls in the bathroom are covered in a hideous wall paper (it looks like the billiton boards in schools, our place actually quite resembles the inside of a school) so I'm going to make 2 of them into ribbon walls with under the sea pictures. This is my plan, we'll see if it works out. I doubt I have time, but I'd like to do secreertely and have it ready for the kids on christmas morning.
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2005 02:56:02 AM »

Sounds great -- maybe you can post some pix whenever you get it finished! 

Btw... for covering up ugly nasty wallpaper without necessarily having to take it down, you might be able to use paintable wallpaper.
Easy to handle (not thin/floppy like many regular wallpapers) & comes in all sorts of nice textures,simple or fancy.  Also great for covering up rough, damaged, or badly finished wallboard.

And about that concrete block -- I'm not sure if paintable wallpaper could be used on that or not (if, say, you need to change the walls themselves) -- but it might depend on what sort of wallpaper paste one uses. I believe most paintable wallpaper comes 'pre-pasted' but of course one can also use paste even with that, if necessary or desired.
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2005 12:04:03 PM »

Another thing to consider is rods hanging from the ceiling or suspension wire that you can get from Ikea and placing a long curtain or strips of cheese cloth over it to soften the look a little. Or the rods could be used to hang pictures or old window frames off of with wire.

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« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2005 01:19:07 AM »

My idea is exactly the same as Tomico's. Here is a diagram that I was fiddling with (I am making a similar thing for the long wall of my new craft room).

There are litterally endless possibilities Cheesy

That came out awefully small, it has wording on it, http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d31/taradk/example.jpg

Never mind, stupid photobucket Angry
« Last Edit: December 19, 2005 01:21:52 AM by Tara1979 » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2005 12:08:21 PM »

Something else that sprung to mind would be to take a winow or similar window frame type structure and make it a light feature.  Put in frosted plexiglass or even pretty handmade rice paper.  Suspend it from the ceiling and you could even use simple christmas lights behind it or a fluorescent bar back there, depending on the look you want. 

When you are done with your project, whatever it ends up being, post a picture! I'm excited to see how it turns out )

Curbside Bandit
« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2005 07:55:13 PM »

Why not hang a large mirror from the ceiling? Mirrors really do add light like a window. I love the way large paintings look against brick/concrete too.
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