Decorative Frame Hides Light-Switch Gap

The new switchplate wasn’t big enough to cover the entire opening.

See the gap at the top? The new switchplate wasn’t big enough to cover the entire opening.

When I moved three years ago, the bedroom I planned to use as an office featured a nautical-themed switchplate cover. The long, tall lighthouse was cute, but unfortunately, my office décor was Jungle Cat Gold, not Seashore Blue. So I whipped out a screwdriver, took down the lighthouse, and popped on a brass switchplate more in keeping with my decorating theme.

I wrapped decorative paper around to the back of the frame, glued it in place, and trimmed the edges so they’d lie flat.

I wrapped decorative paper around to the back of the frame, glued it in place, and trimmed the edges so they’d lie flat.

It didn’t fit.

Due to some contractor’s error, the hole was too large for a regular switchplate. Since oversized covers are two to three times the price of regular ones, and I am a Fiercely Frugal Savage Sister, I looked for an inexpensive solution.

Using a piece of thin but sturdy cardboard, I cut a frame to fit around the hole in the wall. I made the frame’s opening as large as possible while making sure the hole would be entirely covered by the switchplate in front of the frame.  Then I covered the frame with leopard-print craft paper I’d been saving for some worthy project. I glued the edges to the back of the cardboard and smoothed clear plastic contact paper over every inch of exposed paper.

Once the screws are tightened, the switchplate securely holds the frame to the wall.

Once the screws are tightened, the switchplate securely holds the frame in place.

The result blends well with the other savage-style accents and jungle-cat pictures in my office. In fact, it makes me smile every time I flip the light on or off.

I guess I should be grateful to that clumsy contractor.

SAFETY ALERT!

Our legal department wants us to remind you that any time you’re working around electricity, it’s a good idea to first turn off the circuit breaker providing power to that area. We don’t want you to be electrified by anything other than our Fiercely Frugal ideas.

Written by Fiercely Frugal Savage Sister Diana

© 2009, The Savage Sisters

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