In Progress: Fireplace Re-Design

The minute I moved into this house, I wanted to redo the fireplace. It took me the last 18 months to work up the nerve to start such an intensive redo on my own. However, last month I started chipping away at the tile.

Fireplace Demolition

The first 3 tiles came down easily and gave me an idea of what I was dealing with. Apparently I was dealing with a heavy dose of grout and A LOT of construction adhesive.

Fireplace Demolition

Within about 20 minutes I had the top row down completely.

Fireplace Demolition

Over the next few weeks I slowly chipped away at the tile. I was only able to work on it after work and had to be done before 8pm in order to be considerate to my neighbors. The fireplace is on a shared wall in the condo and the tile removal was loud at times.

A majority of the tiles came down easily, but there were some that just wouldn’t budge. Once I finally pried them loose, they tore off chunks of drywall.

Fireplace Remodel - X

The worst damage was on the bottom, and I cause quite a bit of this since I had trouble getting any kind of leverage on the tiles.

Fireplace Remodel - X

This was my first venture into drywall repair so I called on my dad to come over and help. A few weeks back we spent 8 full hours repairing drywall and installing the mantle.

I was amazing at how easy it was to patch the sections of drywall. I had been concerned that I would have to rip out and replace large sections of wall. Instead we were able to use some joint compound to fill the sections and after allowing it time to dry, we had a great surface to move forward with the installation.

Fireplace Remodel - X

At Lowe’s I picked up a premade Mantle (on sale) and a premade Pilaster kit. Typically you would also install a surround behind the Pilaster kit, but I needed the lowest profile possible and the surround just didn’t work for me.

Fireplace Remodel - X

Both the mantle and pilaster kit were easy to install. The hardest part was keeping everything level. This house is…well…a little off balance, and keeping things level can be a challenge. However, we were able to get everything up after few hours work.

In addition to the mantle and pilaster kits, I picked up two pieces of white primed boards to fill the space above the pilasters and below the mantle. Since taking this picture a piece of moulding has been added on top of these simple white boards and it was the perfect addition.

Fireplace Remodel

So here’s where we finished after the one day of work. We got much further than I ever expected and I’m thrilled with the progress. I’ve also continued with the progress and will share more in another post. However, since these pictures were taken we’ve done another coat of compound, I’ve filled all holes, sanded and primed the entire piece.

Fireplace Remodel

Next Steps:

  • Paint with White Semi Gloss (2+ Coats)
  • Install Tiles, Grout, etc

A quick look back…


I can see the end in sight, and even though it’s not done, I can still hang my Christmas stockings this year which makes me the happiest person around.


One response

  1. Pingback: 2011 Recap | Changing My Destiny

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