Are you living with a fireplace that doesn’t fit your personal style? You will be amazed at how a few simple changes can take your fireplace from an eyesore to a beautiful focal point in the room.
This spring, I worked with a young couple in Pocatello to turn their outdated fireplace into one that fit the couple’s more rustic modern aesthetic. While the fireplace looked okay with the original wallpaper, as soon as it was removed and the wall repainted, it just didn’t fit with the colors and mood of the living room.
The first thing we did was to find images of fireplaces that we liked, and then we worked on budget-friendly methods to get their fireplace headed in that direction.
Many people don’t realize that decorative moulding and filigrees are usually just glued or tacked on to the exterior. Unless you live in an historical home, a lot of the frilly fretwork just makes for more difficult dusting, especially if it doesn’t tie in architecturally with the rest of the home. We removed the extra detailing from my client’s fireplace to give it a more clean and modern look. Be aware that the outlines will probably show, so you will need to fill a few small holes and sand it down for re-staining or painting.
We chose to paint the wood parts of the fireplace in this home. The base-moulding and window benches on both sides of the room are all painted white, so the honey colored wood really didn’t fit in with the rest of the room. Another option we discussed was to stain or paint the fireplace a darker color. I photoshoped an image of the fireplace to give the couple an idea of what it would look like with several options, and we all agreed on a soft white. My clients used heat-safe appliance spray paint to turn the gold vents on the fireplace black.
To add a bit of rustic charm to the fireplace, I designed a custom mantle cover using reclaimed barnwood. We had the very talented Joe Borgeman, owner of Fall River Cabinets in Ashton, build the mantle according to our specifications, and then we just slid it over the top of the existing mantle and secured it. The weathered gray of the barnwood complemented the existing gray-flecked tile and tied together the other elements in the room. The added height and thickness of the mantle also gave more prominence to the fireplace and enhanced its place as the natural focal point of the room.
I styled the mantle for summer with some cool, beachy blues that really compliment the gray-green walls. The painting, picture frames, blue bowl, basket and blanket were all purchased at TJ Maxx.
To make it more kid-friendly, I would remove the tall vase and flowers. Here are a few more detail shots and some different angles.
If you are thinking about updating your own fireplace, consider staining it a different color, painting it, building a facade, adding tile or replacing tile. To start your very own fireplace transformation, find some images of fireplaces or mantles you like. With a little elbow grease you will soon have one that is more current and applicable to your personal style. If you would like some help with your fireplace makeover or styling your mantle, fill out the Contact page we will schedule a time!