DIY Decorative Vent Cover | How To

Thinking about doing a DIY decorative vent cover? Check out this DIY project where I made a decorative vent cover!
One of the remaining eye sores in my laundry room is the air vent.

Photo of the offending air vent     >: /

The inspiration             : D
Seeing the price of said inspiration      : O

Then I saw these and my wheels started turning. What if I made a toilet paper art…thing and make it into a decorative vent cover? hmmmm, it just might work….


To the shop!

1) First I took dimensions of the existing vent cover in the laundry room then made an easy frame out of scrap wood I had laying about. Then gave it a quick coat of primer so I wouldn’t have to mess with it after filling in the center with cardboard. (I like saying cardboard better than toilet paper rolls)


2) I collected the ‘cardboard’ and stuck one end in to get a depth and marked it with a pencil.


3) I just started cutting strips until I ran out of cardboard, and then started filling in the frame until I liked the design I created. This process took close to an hour because I was rather picky.

4) Once I was satisfied with the design, I grabbed my amazing $2.50 hot glue gun (which could probably save the world too) and started putting the pieces together permanently.


At this point in the process, my husband walks in and asks about what I’m doing. I explained and told him the next step is to spray paint it. If you can believe it, the man actually tells me “ok, well don’t spray paint it in the house. Take it out to the shop.” ……………   Yeeeep, that happen. I was tempted to spray paint the outline on his pillow just to be funny, buuut it’s all projects and no fun with me. (or I didn’t want him to change his mind about cooking dinner)….; ) either way. I spray painted it outside.

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Since the cover is just wood and cardboard, I bought some cheap $5 brown satin spray paint
5) Now that I finished the cover portion, I moved over to the vent itself and removed it from the wall. Since this is the air intake for the A/C, it had dust and dog hair caught up in between the slats. So I took it out to the shop and gave it a good cleaning, dried it real good, then took my Rustoleum Oil Rub spray paint and spray painted the portion that would be seen. If you try and use regular spray paint on this, it will not stick. However this Rustoleum Oil Rub will.
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Here is a Wilker Don’t for you….I figured I only needed to spray paint the slats since everything else would be covered. WRONG. The top, not the face, but the top and the right side of the vent are also visible when you put the vent back on the wall. So be sure while you are spray painting, to get any of the sides that will show.
6) Let it dry completely  then take it back inside and put it back onto the wall. Now you can take your pretty cover and screw it directly on top! I drilled pilot holes first, then put in 1 5/8 sheetrock screws. Worked like a champ!
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However….you can see that darn white top. Since we are already aware there is no spray painting allowed in the house (: ) hehehehe)….I got a cheap foam brush (that I typically use for staining) and sprayed a little spray paint on it, then brought it inside and just went over the top with it until the white was covered.
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Now. I might be biases…but I say that works. !!! It looks a little dark in the photo, but in person the details really stand out nicely. All in all, the most expensive part of this project was the brown spray paint, which was around $5.

Total Time: 2 hours
Total Cost: $5.00

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5 Responses

  1. I like you blog. So far I made the laundry basket holder. My wife loved it so much that i made two of them. Great step by step intructions. I will keep my eye on more Wilker do’s

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