Need help with fireplace
rinam77
March 21, 2013 in Design Dilemma
We have a brick fireplace in the family room that I love. In order to have more space we removed the bottom stone platform that originally came with the fire place. We added baseboards and crown moulding on top and now I'm not really sure about the look. What could we do to make it blend more in the room? I thought of maybe distressing it and making it look as if its been there for 100 years (I love that old look with brick) or just paint it white? Help! :)
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rinam77
Also, what should we do in the bottom? marble, wood? Thanks, Rina
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:08AM
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PRO
Dytecture
Consider painting the bricks white.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:20AM
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Beth M
I would do the bottom in the same stone as the mantel. Wood would be a fire hazard if it's functional... It's a huge fireplace, I'm not sure that it will ever "blend into" the room. Try hanging a large vintage painting on it that picks up some of the colors of the rest of the room.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:39AM
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rinam77
What about a tv ? Would that work?
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:45AM
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Kate Zak
I have a personal pet peeve regarding tv screens above fireplaces: 1) it will be too high to view comfortably and 2) two competing focal points in one area is always awkward. Do mind the safety aspects above all aesthetic decisions. Looks like you have an accent light source just above, so the idea of a subtle painting above mantel or a few strong decorative accessories on mantel could work. I might suggest above the mantel brick is painted a color in harmony to wall color, mantel is painted very dark, chocolate or ebony and a very beautiful dark firescreen in front.
4 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:55AM
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PRO
TVCoverUps
I think a TV would be a great idea. If you want to add to the room's decor as well as having the TV over the fireplace, then I would recommend using TVCoverUps. Framed artwork or panel accents the space, until it swings upward to reveal the hidden TV. It comes in automatic and manual units and allows for TV tilting hardware. It can also be built to accommodate AV equipment, speakers, Blu-Ray, wires and other consoles. Each unit is custom built to the viewer and space, so it is always best to give us a call.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 9:57AM
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PRO
Brown Bros. Masonry
I feel it's still missing the hearth. Do you plan on using fireplace? always sparks, embers...etc. Hate for them to mess up hardwoods/fire hazard. The hearth does not have to be raised (especially if you're tight on space) it can be floor level. Many choices of different masonry material, stone, tile, slate.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:01AM
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PRO
TVCoverUps
99% of our product goes over the fireplaces. If there were any problems with placing televisions over the mantel, wouldn't there be studies and product warnings on televisions concerning this? The exhaust of the fires goes out behind the mantel up the chimney, which is why the room does not fill with smoke also. Natural seating is over the fireplace in most living room/media rooms and 90% of retrofits including placement of the TV over the fireplace. If you have come across any studies to the contrary of this, please forward it to me.

Also, for issues of the TV placement being too high- you can get the "down and out" mount hardware, which works with our product. By using the "down and out" mount the TV can be lower to any height desired.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:10AM
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Kate Zak
TVCoverups: This is a very ingenious solution! While it is never MY "personal aesthetic preference" to mount tv over fireplace, I recognize there may be situations in which that is the only solution- a great fit for your product. My comment regarding safety was directed to the floor area below as echoed by Brown Bros. Masonry - sorry for any confusion!
1 Like   March 21, 2013 at 10:18AM
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Arlen Dau
I think your hearth and mantel should be the same material. A dark material, like black soap stone would add character. Then install the black fireplace screen/door. The brick work is nice and covering it is the last thing I would do. When the hearth, mantel and screen are black, they play the role of accent and the brick is the focus. That all said, a painting above the mantel would be nice too.
1 Like   March 21, 2013 at 10:27AM
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handymam
I agree that it looks like it is missing something when you look at the base of the fireplace. The continuation of the white molding is just drawing attention to it.

I think the brick on your fireplace is nice. Some people will say to paint it. I would try a compromise and suggest highlighting in buff and chalky white random bricks. You have to have a light hand and watered down paint to achieve it, but it could liven up the brick without completely painting over it. If you don't want to commit to it, try using colored chalks you can wash off if you don't like that look.
2 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:28AM
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rinam77
Love the ideas thank u all!
1 Like   March 21, 2013 at 10:33AM
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onthefence
handymam, what GREAT suggestions!

I want to do something to our brick FP as well. I've toyed with the idea of painting but just don't feel it's the ultimate right decision. And once it's painted, that's it. I think there are a lot of things that can be done to your FP rinam before you resort to paint.

I saw a post the other day that mentioned using concrete stain as well. I really like what handymam says about livening up the brick without completely painting it.

The colored chalks idea is simply brilliant.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:38AM
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handymam
I was wondering about the stains myself to change exterior brick. I suppose you could buy some similar bricks at the brickyard to fool around with.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:41AM
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onthefence
Yep - buying bricks to use as testers has crossed my mind as well. Ours are a very mid 50s style - very uniform in style and a reddish color. Like the original poster, I'd love to have something that looks a bit more industrial/old.

I don't really mind the look of painted brick - but I think I'd tire of it after a while and then I'd be stuck.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:49AM
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PRO
Peter Schlubach Custom Builders Inc.
I would in case the whole fireplace in wood with a recess for a tv above. Re install a new hearth. This is what I did to my similar fireplace, except I didn't have windows flanking the fireplace which allowed me to do built ins.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 10:52AM
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PRO
White Crane Construction
Have you considered using a beautiful tile to update this fireplace, and tie it in with the rest of the room? Below is a before and after of a brick fireplace that we updated with a ceramic plank tile. This project was a whole house renovation of a 50s rambler. The fireplace brick was stained and dated looking. Tile might cost slightly more than paint, but the finished product will be gorgeous, updated, easy to clean, and long lasting.
1 Like   March 21, 2013 at 11:12AM
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handymam
White Crane, what a beautiful job! I would do that if my brick were really hideous. What kind of tile is that?
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 1:04PM
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White Crane Construction
Thanks handymam, glad you like the tile! It is a 12" x 24" porcelain ceramic tile by American Florim Stratos. Item # 12245163.
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 1:15PM
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handymam
Thanks for the info, White Crane!
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 5:02PM
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handymam
Hey, everyone that dislikes painted fireplaces, go over to the current "Painted fireplace" post and look for the post with the link to a Lowes painted fireplace project. It is an amazing paint job!!
0 Likes   March 21, 2013 at 5:52PM
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