Fireplace Re-do

When we moved in last October, our fireplace mantle was orange and laquery. (And, yes, “lacquery” is now officially a word in my vocabulary) Not to mention, waaaay to puny. Take a look:

So I went out and bought a 1×8 pine board and stained it my favorite color- Walnut!

(Insert the sound of screeching brakes here) Wait. Back up. FIRST, before I stained it, I hit it with a chain and a hammer. Scratched it up with a utility knife and a screwdriver, and poked some holes in it with a nail. THEN I stained it.

So in the end, it turned out like this:

Then we attached it to the existing mantle, and voila!

As for the brick, I’m thinking of covering it with 2×2″ tumbled travertine tiles. Like the ones on the left, OBVIOUSLY!

I am going to remove the firebox insert thingy, and tile the inside, outside and even the hearth. There a gas line hook up in there, so we’ll have that hooked up one day. Hopefully before gas reaches $7.00 a gallon.

Now, here’s where ya’ll come in. I’d LOVE to hear your ideas on what I should put on my mantle. It’s so LOOOONG! I’ve just got that picture propped up there now because I haven’t painted our Master Bedroom yet, and I think it’s going to go in there. Don’t quote me on that though. :-)

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Comments

  1. Diane@A Picture is Worth.... says

    Layla,
    The mantle looks great. And I love how you painted the wall too.

    I think it will look great with the tile.

    We have gas logs, and love them!
    Diane

  2. Life with Mimi & Bunny says

    Absolutely LOVE what you did with that mantle. It looks wonderful. It looks like a different fireplace. I am going to print it for my idea file just in case our next home has a puny mantle!

  3. Linda at Lime in the Coconut! says

    Just LOVE your re-do’s…That ole’ piece of 1×8 pine looks so old and chunky! beautiful. Like the idea of the travertine, too. How do you envision finishing it off??
    Great stuff, Layla..as always!

  4. Melissa @ The Inspired Room says

    Great job with the fireplace re-do! So much better!

    Happy remodeling,
    Melissa

  5. Dianne says

    Love your blog. So happy you have started your own business. You did a great job on the mantle. As for what to do over it…I am seeing a vintage sign that is very long and very cool in color and letters. It’s out there, keep looking!

  6. Chris says

    Just gorgeous. Is the stain actually called “walnut”? I like it. As for the mantle, I just posted pics of mine–which obviously I like. I’m a fan of the layered frames. That way, you can put any kinds of pictures or letters in there and change them out as needed. You could also do a large mirror. My big piece of advice is not to go too small. It’s a large mantle, and a lot of people put little things up there. It just ends up making it look busy, but not an impact. I’m not exactly sure what direction you’re taking the room, or I could suggest some more specifics. I’m madly in love witht that tile, though. Whatever you pick will be spectacular.

  7. paperjunk-lc says

    Sometimes when it comes to mantles you need to just play with it. An inspiration will come to you.
    I love the walnut color too. I love the fact that you’re making this older in need of an update home look completely fabulous with ingenious creative ideas like a simple piece of distress pine and some paint.

  8. Linda at Lime in the Coconut! says

    Oh…forgot to mention what would look fun on the mantle. I just won an old metal vintage gas station number sign. It has 10 on one side and 13 on the other. just black and white…but would be a cute nod to your *gas* fireplace…could lean a couple of great B@W around and on it. I need to find a place for it, haven’t recieved it yet.

  9. Teacats says

    Excellent job on red-oing the wall and fireplace — the mantel looks amazing! How about a large round dark wood-framed mirror? With a couple of white ceramic candlesticks on the right — and a single white vase on the left? Or — a row of simple clear votives with white candles — pretty when lit for a house party! Or how about a row of vintage silver baby cups?

    Just some thoughts!

    Jan at Rosemary Cottage

  10. Spymommy says

    Love the mantle! You have a knack for taking the dreary, seeing the potential and making it FABULOUS!

    I would definitely find a great piece of lettering (be it a sign, or a single large initial from your last name) and work it into the mantle with some b/w photography or great litho prints – maybe some architechtural prints or natural prints to compliment the shells you have around the corner. It would also be fun to add a punch of color up there since it seems a bit monochromatic right now. I know you’ll make it amazing.

    BTW, I have total mantle ADHD and mine changes all the time. :)

  11. Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality says

    Girl, you are good! I love what you did with that pine board, looks perfect now. And those tumbled tiles will look wonderful too, I love that look.

    OK, for the mantel….is there something there to reflect if you put a long mirror up there? I love that look.

    Rhoda

  12. Teacats says

    Me again! My Dh really loves your kitchen — and sends along his “Well done” to you and your DH for the excellent job adding mouldings to the top of the cabinet. He is asking about your flooring — what kind of flooring?

    Jan at Rosemary Cottage

  13. SarahWhite says

    Wow…that looks great! I would have never thought to do something like that. Lately, I’m loving the mantle displays that are unexpected…tiny little pics, things off center…not the same ole, same ole. Loooooooove Linda’s idea…but I love anything she does. You should really see her house…A.M.A.Z.I.N.G…and so is she. She is an incredibly talented “homer” (my new word)and leads an amazing cool life. Really…she’s a cool chick with tons of fresh inspiration. Can you tell I adore her? Really and truly…I want to be her when I grow up! :)

    Sorry…got off track there for a moment. Heeee. Was wondering what you are going to do with the “insert”. My parents have one of those and while initially I thought it was pretty un-attractive (i’m such a real fire kind of girl) the thing puts out amazing heat and that’s what they use all winter. My dad has one lined up for us and I think we are going to use it this winter. I was just going to mention, with the cost of things lately…might be a good thing to hang on to. I’d much rather fund my decorating hobbies than the gas/power bill.

    Congrats on the first day of your new career. I remember the day I quit my job almost 10 years ago…one of the best days of my life. Such freedom…in a new way! Jump on it you ROCK-STAR girl! :)

  14. SarahWhite says

    Me again. Just saying hello to Rhoda and Jan (Teacats). Rhoda…waiting on that newspaper article! Jan…where have you been…I’m dying for some house updates. Come out and play!

    Thanks Layla…for letting me use your space to chat today. ;}

  15. Deb says

    Love the new transformation, and once you put that tile in it is going to look amazing. So for the top of the mantle, maybe one of those large cool clocks that is basically only made of metal. The don't have a backing or anything. Very Pottery Barnish. I have seen them at Target also. Kind of like this…http://www.target.com/Oversized-See-Through-Wall-Clock/dp/B001205110/sr=1-2/qid=1217100885/ref=sr_1_2/601-6457876-4328149?ie=UTF8&index=target&rh=k%3Aclock&page=1

    Just a thought. Oh and congrats on the new venture. You'll do great I'm sure.

  16. Kristi says

    I’m not great at this, but what about an old sled, you know those radio flyer sleds above the mantle. Or would a sled be weird in Alabame? I guess I’m thinking something large and unexpected.

    I used to collect those sleds all the time for my friend’s mother-in-law who did amazing painting on them. So I know they are easy to find here, and cheap. Perhaps not the case in your part of the country?

    Well just an idea to add to your thoughts.

  17. Kat says

    Layla,
    Another great project! Youve definitely improved your fireplace. Love the new mantle. No advice from me as mantle decorating brings on a case of hives. Ive been known to spend hours trying to get mine right.

  18. Kat says

    Layla,
    Your mantle looks fantastic. Love what you did with that pine board. No help from me on accessorizing. Mantle decor makes me break out in hives. Ive been know to spend hours working on mine. Im sure youll do better without my input.

  19. Kat says

    well Im sorry….please feel free to delete my many comments. LOL! You can tell Im new at this posting thing.

  20. Bella says

    I love it!

    You will love having a gas fireplace, it is so convenient. We have a wood burning one and yes, it's nice, but alot of WORK, too.

    The length of my mantle kicks your mantle's butt though, lol ;) I will have to post my fireplace on my blog someday. The brick surround, hearth and mantle go the entire wall, it's massive. We do love it though…but it is a challenge to decorate. I just decorate right above the fireplace though, otherwishe it would look like a garage sale table I think ;)

    I like topiaries on mantles, not that I have any, but I will someday. Wreaths look nice over them, too, I do have one of those…it is a simple one, from Target's Smith & Hawkens line. Just have fun with it, I am sure you will come up with something fun!

    Bella

  21. Bella says

    Hi Layla,

    I posted my fireplace on my blog, come take a peek. Please ignore the curtain rod that is too long and the green chair that is too big…lol…hubby has to saw off the excess curtain rod, all in good time, right? And the chair, well, that is what I get for fallin in love with Steve’s Thinking Chair on Blue’s Clues! lol ;)

  22. Kris says

    Love the mantle – it turned out fantastic! So hard to decorate them sometimes though. Nothing ever stays on mine for too long!

  23. Mrs. Trixi says

    I love what you are doing with your fireplace. I have similar issues with mine except the brick goes to the ceiling. Yours gives me inspiration.
    Blessings~~

  24. sandra/tx says

    I love your blog. What a great job you did on the “new” mantle! Great style. I’m looking forward to following your adventures into your new career. Best wishes.

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