8 Clever Ways to Conceal an Unsightly Wireless Router

Without compromising on signal strength.

March  7, 2022
Photo by Rocky Luten

Technology, for better or for worse, has become an integral part of every home. TVs, smart hubs, printers, charging cords—it’s everywhere, all the time, and it’s not always pretty. Personally, I prefer to camouflage as much tech as possible. For example, I made a decorative frame for my TV and have it programmed to display landscape art when not in use. The wireless router is no different—I want it hidden. As of now it’s inside a basket that’s also filled with dog toys, which is not ideal. So, I started doing some research about how to better hide it, and thought: why not share my findings?

Of course, there are some things to consider when hiding a router. The manufacturer (and any tech dad, like my own) would tell you that hiding it is a bad idea. If you look at the router you’ll see that there are likely vents on multiple sides, which allow air to pass through and keep the machine cool. Obstructing the vents can cause the router to overheat, which can either a. damage what’s around it or b. damage the router itself. The other main issue with hiding a router is that blocking it with anything can dampen the signal strength, so you’ll want to choose something that allows air and a Wi-Fi signal to pass through.

All that said, Wi-Fi routers and modems are often unattractive, and who wants that staring them in the face? Not me! Not you! So take these suggestions with a grain of salt, do your own testing with signal and air circulation, and let us know how it goes.

1. Put it in a Lidded Basket

The most straightforward of all the router-hiding methods: put it in a basket. Baskets are basically the ultimate clutter-hiding receptacles for dog toys, children’s toys, mail, winter clothes, shoes—you name it, and wireless routers are no exception.

2. Make a Metal Box for It

Similar to a radiator cover, making a box for a router out of perforated metal lets air pass through to keep the machine cool, but also adds a decorative touch where one would otherwise not be. Read: It would otherwise be an ugly, black box.

3. Turn it Into a Side Table

If your cable connection is in an especially awkward spot, it might behoove you to make a table like this one to cover a router that’s sort of…floating on the wall. We can’t choose how poorly things are installed in homes before we get to them (especially rentals) but we can work around it.

4. Stash it in a Countertop Basket

This is a great option if you’ve found that your signal is significantly reduced by hiding the router in a lidded basket—just go for a regular lidless basket. This one is conveniently located on the kitchen counter, which also makes it easy to style with a few other items—you know, to distract from the black box of it all.

5. Hide it Behind a Frame

If you route the cable wire up onto a shelf or side table, you can easily cover up the router with a picture frame or piece of art that’s relatively the same size. You can take it one step further by attaching a box to the back of the frame

6. Create Faux Stack of Books

This one will take a little more craftiness, but how smart is this idea to hide the router among a bookshelf by hiding it with faux book spines?

7. Mount it Up High

When all else fails, get it up and out of the way. Creating a custom box to mount the router up high gets it out of sight and out of mind, which is exactly where we want it to stay.

8. Store it in a cane cabinet

If you're in the market for a new media console and want to squirrel away every last cord, a caned media console or cabinet might be the best way to go. Since cane is a woven material with small holes throughout, it will allow air to pass through as well as the WiFi signal. You can also drill a hole in the back of the unit to snake cords through to an outlet behind it.

Have you thought of a clever way to hide your unsightly tech? Tell us your ideas below!

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Anne Jarman
    Anne Jarman
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    Liz Summers
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When I'm not writing & editing for Home52, I'm likely to be found DIY-ing a new piece of furniture (or restoring an old one), hanging things on the wall in my apartment, or watching hours of vintage RHONY.


Anne J. March 11, 2022
It’s a router, we all have them. Why feel the need to hide them? Tidy up the wires and just deal with it, there are too many problems created with concealing them, fire related to heat issues being the most serious.
youngEsmerelda22 March 10, 2022
Oh! I see some unhappy comments, here. I want to thank you for your genius idea of hiding that hideous stuff in a DIY MCM table. Our home is MCM inside and out... I haven't been able to find or make a space in our den to hide the modem away. Thanks much!
emily March 9, 2022
I have a bone to pick with whoever decided the best place for the coax connection was in the HALLWAY of my apartment. It could have been wired and fed the other way through the exact same wall to end up at the kitchen counter where I could at least set it up there. I've found that the best option for me is to just buy the best looking router possible (some of them are seriously ugly) and mount a tiny wall shelf to hold it.
Liz S. March 8, 2022
The article mentions heat and a router needing air flow, but then shows basket and cloth like enclosures.

They run hot, in my experience. In my location, I use mobile hotspots ... not my phone... specific data devices for internet access via cell service (Jetpack). I have 3 to accommodate the data that my work requires. They all run hot at times, primarily when pushing or pulling a lot of data: Zoom meetings with screen/video sharing, streaming, up/downloading large amounts of data. They are small and live on my desk in my home office so no need to enclose or cover.

Bottomline, though, beware of heat issues! This likely goes for all electronic devices ... those little circuits run hot doing all that they do.
Ororaf March 8, 2022
Metal is bad. You are making a partial faraday cage. Book idea is great.
bluegoose53 March 7, 2022
Wire or metal cages around a router do not help the signal. Maybe prettier, but at a sacrifice. Probably the best idea is number 7.