Making My 70’s Intercom Pretty

If you live in a mid-century apartment like me, you’re probably overrun with tacky little things like this baby:

I’m guessing it was added in the 70’s based on the beautiful faux wood and all the other delightful details.

(Hint: If it’s in italics, it’s sarcasm.)

Yeah, it’s fugly.  Not even misused phrases like “vintage charm” can help this sucker out.

(Amazingly it still works, so that’s nothing short of miraculous.)

In my slow-going but determined attempt to makeover the foyer….

… I decided this intercom cover was something worth tackling as well.

Of course, my enthusiasm got the better of me when I tried to remove the cover and realized it was all one piece, and hard wired to the electrical supply in the wall.  Eek!  I’m sure I could have eventually figured out how to disconnect it, but that’s not something I was terribly interested in (playing with electricity and messing with things that still work after 40+ years, that is).

Time to move on to my not-yet-determined Plan B.  (Whatever that was.)

I pondered various ideas, including hot gluing a piece of paper or fabric to the cover and cutting holes for the speaker.  Even though we don’t own the apartment, I was pretty sure that I could return the cover to its 1970’s glory if necessary.

Then I remembered a silver frame that I had gotten from Dollar Tree which happened to perfectly fit the box cover.  Hooray!  Plan B!

I took some scrapbook paper left over from my cut-out planner and taped it to the inside of the frame.  I cut out the holes for the buttons using an X-acto Knife, but not before vigorously cleaning the buttons (all this time I had thought the buttons were yellow/brown, but under all the grime, they actually proved to be white!).

I attached the frame to the box (and the adjacent wall) using 3M Velcro mounting strips  (which are one of my favorite things EVER).

Here’s the finished product:

See the slits cut for the speaker?

(Forgive the less than beautiful lighting in the foyer.)

I used the X-acto knife for those as well.

And just because we all like a good side-by-side before-and-after comparison, here you go:

I would call that a major improvement.  And even though it’s bedecked in flowers and is undeniably girly, Josh gave it the OK (I actually got a high five because of my handiwork).

Now trying to persuade the pizza man to walk up four flights of stairs will be more enjoyable… at least for me.



More Before-and-Afters…


Embellishing My $0.99 Planner

The Odyssey of the Curtain Rod Bookshelf Thing

Painted Wooden Spoons


5 thoughts on “Making My 70’s Intercom Pretty

  1. That’s great! You and Josh didn’t have the… er, pleasure of experiencing the seventies. Since I did, I can only hope all pictures of me in high school wearing a leisure suit have burned to a crisp.

  2. Pingback: The Foyer Makeover (A Good Ol’ Before and After) | The Ginger Penny Pincher

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