rosalind_therrien

Stacked Stone Fireplace to ceiling or not for Great Room

Rosalind Therrien
November 6, 2017

We are building new construction in a residential area of the NC mountains, country setting,

Blue Ridge Mountain views. I have a 15 ft to peak cathedral vaulted Great Room 21 ft wide with large windows facing the view and a 14' fireplace wall to the left of these large windows.


I would appreciate advice on the design of the fireplace wall and colors for the stacked stone. The FP section with ventless gas FP is 65 inches wide and flanked by 2 -50" spaces for built-in white painted bookcases with an arch at the top. I originally had planned on a stacked stone to the ceiling with a shelf mantle. There was a plan for a raised hearth also. My spouse is the builder, so we can do most any design that is best.


Style: Floor is dark bamboo. Kitchen has flat panel white painted cabinets, some with glass front doors. I selected Stellar Night quartz counter tops. I do not want too rustic or too formal. I'd like a classic design that does not go out of style. Black/Dark metal ceiling fixtures and door handles. White painted trim. SW Inviting Ivory walls. I like red accents. I am more traditional in my style. The furniture you see in the photo is what I have, but does not have to stay. I do have an ivory oriental rug in mind to replace the current dark one.





Looking at the space now I am not confident in the fireplace portion of the wall.


Questions:

1) Do I stone all the way to the ceiling? I am concerned it may overpower the space and detract from the windows and the view? I am thinking Airstone veneer stone - either Spring Creek ( grays) or Birch ( white and lighter grays) . I thought may be the lighter color had nice contrast to the floor plus visually less overbearing. You can see it is built out in preparation for this design.


Alternatively, I am thinking a white painted surround with the stacked stone around the FP and wallboard to the ceiling between the fireplace. This would be less expensive, too.


I do want a "fitting" design for the house and area.


2) How high should the raised hearth be, if there should be a raised hearth?

3) How high should the mantle be - either as a shelf mantle on stone OR as a wood fireplace surround.

4) Do you have other advice for the stone for this FP? we prefer not masonry work as this is not an expertise that my spouse has. He has done a lot of tiling and the faux stone appears to be similar to that.


Please ignore the mess, we are under construction :-) Please see attached photos and links to the stone. If you have other advice on the stone please tell me.

https://www.lowes.com/pd/AirStone-Birch-Bluff-8-sq-ft-Primary-Wall-Faux-Stone-Veneer/1000202103

https://www.lowes.com/pd/AirStone-8-sq-ft-Spring-Creek-Primary-Wall-Faux-Stone-Veneer/50247197


Thank you so much, in advance, for your help. Its soo hard to do this all by yourself :-)

Roz


Comments (60)

  • jbtanyderi
    The mass, even without stone, is too big for the room: it will overwhelm everything. Consider something less deep, and not up to the ceiling.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked jbtanyderi
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    Here is inspiration photo for you.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
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  • Rosalind Therrien

    Thank you, Flo. I see the builtins here are dark grey blending with the stone. If I have white kitchen cabinets with black granite countertops in the same room. What color stone and bookcases should I go with? Is the dark grey like this photo too dark? ( I have dark brown floors, too) Thank you so much for the advice. Also, would you suggest not going to the ceiling as jbtanderi suggests?


  • heatherd102399

    Rosalind, my suggestion would be to minimize the contrast of the fireplace with the rest of the room, since it is a substantial element. I'd go with a white/light neutral. I have seen some very nice tiles that have the proportions of stacked stone without actually being stone or faux stone. Both of these are from Daltile.



    Rosalind Therrien thanked heatherd102399
  • Rosalind Therrien


    I was thinking of something more traditional like this OR ...

  • Rosalind Therrien

    LIke this..

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    If you want timeless, that look is passe so I wouldn't go that traditional in a mountain home. I would do the stone up the entire wall, the window will balance the size of that and in fact, I've done the stone (doing one now) and the ceiling is 22' high, so this is common. However, use the thin stone and make sure to get the premade "corners" so you don't have raw edges. That has to be ordered with the stone itself if using the fabricated products. Just because the kitchen is white, even in open settings, doesn't mean you have to do white everywhere. In fact, several large homes I have done have white kitchens with stacked stone in darker colors, but they used in one case a weathered wood look on their mantel and side cabinets and shelving (Knotty Alder with weathered wood in gray/brown tones) and looks beautiful. The other one I'm doing is white kitchen with gray stone up 22' and white kitchen. We are tying the look together with dark flooring and furniture and lighting. So, it can be done.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • Rosalind Therrien

    Heatherd102399, Thank you for your suggestions and the new idea. I did have stone stuck in my head. This is an interesting alternative. I will think about it and do some more research . I do like the texture of the stone.

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    I also like to tie in the outdoors and so, having some wood tones beside the stone in a natural look would bring the outdoors inside as well. A very pleasing look.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan


    this is a medium colored stone with the white walls and trim. Feels cold to me though. Even with warm furnishings.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • Rosalind Therrien

    Thank you, Flo. That is what I was wondering. The windows are so large that maybe you need the stone to the ceiling. So I don't have to go with white! I do have grey slate entry and could go with more grey/brown tones for the stone and bookcases. Do you have a recommendation for a thin stone to use? What have you had good experience with? This has helped me soo much. Thank you!

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    Sure, happy to help. I have to go to my files and see if I can pull up the products we have used several times with very good success. bbl

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • Rosalind Therrien

    Thank you, FLo. I think a grey mix - light and medium- color may be a warmer. I do have dark floors and dark furniture. The windows bring in a lot of light. So I don't think it will be to dark in the room. I was just concerned with the 'weight' of the darker colors on the FP wall.

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    We used MSInternational and they have a website you can start to look at to see the various products and colors, etc. Your best bet is to go to a stone yard in your area, so you don't have big shipping charges, and see what they have. You MUST get "current" samples however, because this stone changes and is quite variable, so always make sure you know what is currently coming in versus what is on sample boards, etc.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    With your high ceilings, you will make the eye go up which is always a good thing and then hopefully you will have a nice chandelier as well as other ambient lighting in the bookcases? Lighting is important in any setting. It is the total combination of elements that make a space fabulous. Yours can and will be!! I'll post their MSI website info shortly.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    Here is one website.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    One more tip: (hope I don't overwhelm you!) The space on either side of your fireplace is quite deep, so, you might want to get some cool ideas for designing those spaces. For example, on the right side where you plan the TV, build a dummy back so it isn't soo deep and the TV has to be on either a slide out shelf that turns or on a bracket that is a pull out and angle one. Get lighting on top if you can with nice wood shelving. I would definitely look into knotty alder. It is really beautiful and has interesting knots and little gaps, etc. that make it a great wood for a built in around a fireplace. I think I have a photo of the one I did for a client. I will look for it and post it if I can find it. Have soooo many photos!

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    I haven't found the one I'm looking for, but here is a picture of the knotty alder we also put in the master bathroom. This is best shot I have that gives you good idea of the look. Of course, you can stain it any shade you wish, but I really liked this and if I recall it was a walnut stain. Has gray undertones.

    This is a tower on a marble vanity top with a hydraulic lift so the cabinet doesn't rub on the top of the marble. Of course, power plug inside for those pesky flat irons and other electrical devices we want stowed out of sight! Hope this helps.

  • Rosalind Therrien

    Oh Flo, thank you so much for all the advice and tips. I am not overwhelmed. You are getting the creative juices flowing in me. Lighting considerations, TV special pull out, picking the stone from the yard.nI like the Alder wood and will look for it. I will look up MSI. I think Lowes has some samples. If you can find some more pictures that are good for me to inspire color, design for the bookshelves with FP, that would be great!

    Since I am not going with a TV up high on the stone. I was thinking of a mantle. DO you have some ideas or photos of the size and shape of the mantle that would be appropriate for this room and size of FP? Thank you so much!


  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    Sure, but you need to select the stone first, then mantel. My vision is for a beefy kind of distressed wood possibly a recycled post from a old barn, something like that if you do a stacked stone approach. I will see if I can get a photo for you.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    I have a message to my client and she is out of town. But when she gets back she will send me a photo and I will post it for you.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    Here is photo from my client’s fam rm with stacked stone fireplace and knotty alder base cabinets and wood shelfs. Just to help you visualize. Of course, there are differences from your room with TV but just to show you real life example.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • Rosalind Therrien

    Oh, Flo, that is beautiful! The alcoves/bookcases are drywalled with an arch and not wood, Iike that too! More to think about. I am have been looking at stones online and will travel to the local stone places to see what they have to offer. So, this is a process of discovery. I really appreciate your help and ideas.

  • Rosalind Therrien

    Flo, ( separate topic - lighting) -you mentioned chandelier(s) for that 21 x 15 vaulted room. I did put 2 fans in and do not like them at all, so I planned to repurpose those in the bedrooms in the basement. The great room does need a fan to circulate the air and FP heat. I was thinking of placing a white fan in the center peak just for circulation, but still need light.( Should it be white? to blend into the ceiling?) I could add recessed cans - 3 each side - OR- put hanging lights - 1 on each slant. What are your thoughts on lighting for that room? I have black iron, oiled-rubbed bronze colored light fixtures in the DR and Kitchen, with white bell shaped ridged globes.

    Thank you!

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    I believe if you put arched top areas on the built-ins either side of your fireplace with the same relative soft curve of your window, this would repeat that curve and look really lovely. As to lighting, ideally, I would have a chandelier centered in front of the window (I just can't tell exactly where things are from the photos) and centered to the fireplace. Then you could put two small fans either side and make them the same or close to same color of ceiling. They should visually disappear leaving just the chandelier the star.

    Something like this depending on what your furnishings will be like. This has traditional candle lights but a slightly more updated look.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • Emily Jowers

    You could do stacked stone to the mantle, wrap the mantle all the way around and then plaster above it. Aesthetically, I think you could do whatever you wanted on the fireplace, but it would be cheaper to use less stone.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Emily Jowers
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    The whole purpose of doing a tall wall for a fireplace is to create a eye raising focal point. If you cut the stone off at the mantel it will destroy the whole point of the tall wall. Kind of like a short person (I am one!) wearing a black skirt and white blouse with a belt! Cuts you in half. Solid stone wall with mantel of your choice is best bet for your room. No mantel would be even better but with your location a mantel is probably expected. It will be very beautiful. I would do darker stone with lighter walls. Darker wood but not expresso dark. More warm wood look like walnut or knotty elder.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked Flo Mangan
  • PRO
    Flo Mangan
    Emily, I don’t mean to discount your input, which is valid, I just felt I needed to discuss the value of soaring stone wall. It will add some expense, but hopefully that was factored into project at the start. If real stone was in the budget, veneer stone will weigh less and cost less. Hope you understand. Thanks.
  • Emily Jowers

    Oh no. I agree that the wall would look best stoned all the way up. It just sounded like she was asking for other options, so I thought I'd provide one. I actually like the flat stone you showed further up better than the stacked stone. Not quite as heavy looking.

  • flyr4fun

    Lowes & HD are good for a lot of things, but not stone products. They can special order a few items but it's limited and you'll pay big bucks for freight. The stone yard I went to had many other choices of real stone veneer products and their price was half of what Lowes quoted. Plus you can see a whole crate of the product and not just a little sample. Look for stone yards or building material suppliers in your area. If your hubbie can tile, he can do veneer stone no problem. I vote for "go big, or don't bother". Stone all the way up!

  • Frederic
    So our old fireplace went to the mantel and we had the tv above it, I never liked the tv above sos when we redid the fireplace, we got rid of the bar to left of the fireplace and did a built in entertainment center, still working the trim and doors on it. We also went with a walnut mantle since our kitchen has some walnut in it to tie everything together. I am in NC and go this stone from our local yard, it’s Coronado stone and they make a great product.
    Rosalind Therrien thanked Frederic
  • Emily Jowers

    I love that stone Frederic!

  • PRO
    Flo Mangan

    Wow! Frederic what a great transformation! Nice job.

  • Frederic

    @Rosalind, just an FYI our room dimensions are pretty similar, room is 22 ft wide from center to windows, the tall side of the fireplace is 21ft high and the low side is 18ft high. Not sure where in NC you are but we sourced the stone from a local yard in Greensboro, NC but I would imagine there are lots of good yards in the mountains. One thing post completion, I wish I had went a shade or two darker on the stone, with our light walls and natural oak floors, the stone is a tiny bit washed out, however the Mantel is walnut that just uses tongue oil and the hearth place is a dark grey stone so that helps. The fire place also has ducting/fans outside of the box (These were original when the house was built) so the fans are the two boxes at the top, they pull warm in, push it through behind the firebox, radiant heats that air and blows out the bottom. When we have a fire, we get free hot air when the fire is on. Those vent covers also help add a bit extra color to break up the light stone.

  • Rosalind Therrien

    @Frederic, That is a fantastic transformation! You did a great job in the design and the installation. Thank you so much for your post comments details and the pictures. The Coronado stone you used looks great. I like the size and texture. It's hard to tell actual stone color online. It seems beige/ivory?

    With all the comments, I've concluded I do need to go to the stone yard and see what they offer and I plan to stone all the way up!

    Did the stone yard also have the hearth stone? Did they cut to size? I have very dark floors ( bamboo hazelnut color) so I am now leaning toward a mid-darker grey, per Flo's advice, with the current ivory wall color.

  • Rosalind Therrien

    @Flyer4fun, I am convinced now. I bought a box of airstone home to see what it looked like. It does look quite faux. I saw Mstone that was veneer, screw up kind, that has dimension, texture, and more real looking that I like better. I just have not found a color that I like. I am still looking for stone ( prefer the veneer so spouse can do the work), that looks or is real.. I am looking at stone yards this weekend to see what they have to offer.

  • Frederic
    @Rosalind, The stoneyard cut the hearth as well. I looked at the veneer stones but the price difference is negligible. It was only about two dollars more per square foot to get the Coronado stone which is much more beefier and bulky. I did have to do a fair amount of sanding on the Coronado with a stone file to get everything flat but that saved a great deal of time and effort and not having to grout the fireplace. Coronado has five or six different product lines with each line in about a dozen colors and shades variations so I am sure you can find one that you would like. These are the flagstone line. Cutting the hearth was very straightforward I just gave the yard a drawing. The one thing I found was that I was limited to a 6 foot single slab for the hearth. This wasn’t a problem but could be depending on the width of your fireplace. There are some good pictures on who’s where multiple Flat stones were used to form a horse wider than 6 feet.
  • Rosalind Therrien
    @Frederic, What color did you select from Coronado Flagstone product line ? I really like it. Thank you!
  • PRO
    Geraghty and Associates

    Hi Rosalind, I just saw your previous questions... so just for your records - The 3D marble wall is a 'Blue Savoie' - I will attach a similar product web reference. It was lightweight and relatively easy to install...

    The sliding mechanism is a custom counterweight slide and pulley apparatus that I designed and built with my cabinet maker (my engineering training came in handy), so unfortunately there is not one readily available on the market that I know of...

  • Frederic
    @rosland, it’s the pro-ledge In oak-brook, we debated between and their honey ledge, I would probably select their honey ledge if doing the job again, these pieces are bit beefier and probably better for such a tall space
  • Rosalind Therrien
    @Geraghty, Thank you for the inspirational photos and details on the stone and mechanism. My husband is pretty handy and may be able to make one.
  • Rosalind Therrien
    We went to a local Coronado Stone distributor and sales office today. I willing post the samples we brought home separately. It was well worth the trip- great big displays, easy to compare color and styles. Got it narrowed down to 4 colors and going to seem how it looks in the room over a few days.

    @Frederik, The Oakbrook is beautiful and one of our choices.
  • Rosalind Therrien

    These are the choices we brought home from Coronado Office. 4 choices. Huron is varied grey tones. Antique Cream is light ivory and cream various. Antique Buff is fairly uniform color in a deeper ivory. Oakbrook is varied beige, tan with some hint of greys. We also painted the wall grey to see the effects of so much darkness and grey in the room.


    This is Huron. The grey tile is from the entryway.

    and in the showroom

    This is Antique cream


    This below is Antique buff. No sample in showroom. I think it's too orangey,

    This is Oakbrook , to the right.

    Now all beside each other , with carpet and walls, Huron, cream, buff, Oakbrook, left to right.

    My husband does not like the stained cabinet idea besides the fireplace, and wants to stick with the white cabinets and bookshelves with arch at the top.

    I do have grey slate tiLe in the entryway visible to the LR and FP. I also have ivory, umber, red furniture. The countertops will be black (ordered) with white subway tile backsplash ( current plan ).

    You can see the FP from the outside through the windows from front and side yard. The house color is slate blue with white trim.

    Questions:

    1. Is the grey too dark?

    2. While the grey color goes with kitchen black and white and entry, and outside house color, it's not a color in my rug or furniture.Is grey neutral enough to look good with these furnishings and rug?

    3. I was sold on Oakbrook in the showroom, but in the house it's quite beige and tan, maybe not the best with white and black and dark brown floors ?

    4. I like the contrast of grey with white cabinets. The white with the creams, I am not sure of . I do like the lightness of color and more blended into the room. The grey makes the FP the focal point of the room with the dark color. Is that going to compete with the large picture windows as the focal point?

    This is a tough decision. I feel paralyzed going back and forth with design choices .

    Thank you for your interest and help!

  • Rosalind Therrien
    To get a better visual, I did some photoshop on a photo of my room with the different stones . I will try to post them.
  • Emily Jowers

    I like the Huron. I would probably repaint the walls if you use it though. Not a fan of the yellow with it. I also like the antique cream. They have completely different feels, one being dark and the other light. If you are concerned about it overpowering the space (as you mentioned in the description), I would use the lighter colors like the antique cream.

    Your fireplace in it's current state reminds me of a picture I saw recently of a fireplace covered in American Clay.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Emily Jowers
  • Rach Bailey

    @Frederic, I know this thread is a few months old now, but hopefully you'll see this! Nice work on your redone fp. How high is the bottom of your mantel from the floor?

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Rach Bailey
  • Rach Bailey

    @Rosalind, what did you end up going with? What is the width of your finished fireplace? I'm doing a new build with a similar layout for our fireplace and am debating whether the fireplaces with the stone should be 6 or 7 feet wide.

    Rosalind Therrien thanked Rach Bailey
  • Frederic
    @rach, the mantle height didn’t change, it’s the same as the original at 50 inches.
  • Rosalind Therrien

    @Rach - The fireplace is 6 feet wide with 4 foot bookcases built in on each side of the fireplace. I could not find a stone that I liked. So we decided to go with drywall above with traditional white painted wood mantle and surround and fireplace hearth that matched our kitchen counter. When it is done I will post.

    This was a much less expensive option for us and my husband can build the fine cabinetry and mantle.

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