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fireplace design with palladian windows and high ceilings

Karen Web
January 16, 2018

We are trying to update the fireplace to sell the house. A designer is suggesting a mantle-less tile design, with the tile going up to the top of the palladian windows (and getting rid of the brass fireplace framing). This is a huge great room, and the first thing you see when you enter the house, so she says it needs to be dramatic.

I am having trouble picturing her idea, as there is still another 6 feet of wall before the ceiling- I think it will look like they forgot to tile the rest. Here is what it looks like right now.- video is walking into the great room from the front door.

Thoughts? thanks!

Comments (21)
  • Godswood

    I cannot comment on tiling the FP because it is to difficult to picture without the tile. Do you have one picked out if you go this route? I'd likely go to the ceiling with a FP facade.


    Your chandelier is too small and super ornate for the setting.

    What are the gold circles above the windows for? Loose them.

    Your coffee table is not large enough and it's floating out in middle too far from each sofa. Pick a sofa to anchor it to or buy one that fits your decor style. (I'd pick the latter)

    Karen Web thanked Godswood
  • decoenthusiaste

    Are you staging or will it show empty? That's a pricey project that won't add much value. Most tweaks like that will be re-done by the new owners. I think you should refer that designer to them if they want to change the FP. It is a classic style and just needs a mirror and a lower, knock out chandelier to reflect in the mirror. New owners can decide that. Proportion and balance will sell more than a remodel here. Remove the distracting little do-dads above the windows and pull the sofas to within 18" of the coffee table. If that makes the position of the rug under the sofas awkward, I would use a smaller rug. They should sit entirely on it or have it under the front 1/3 as they do now. A smaller coffee table might be the answer to that balance issue.

  • hatetoshop

    I would only paint out the brass trim on the fireplace (use a black high heat spray). Other than that, I wouldn't do a thing to it, but it would be best to check with your real estate agent. Agree, changing the chandelier would be a far better investment. As would simple panels on the windows. And just move the sofas closer to the coffee table. And last, remove the fireplace toolset (looks like it's a gas fireplace).

  • PRO
    Patricia Colwell Consulting

    I agree not worth doing and the chandeleir change if you want to go ahead but the only thing I would do is get rid of the shell things above the windows.

  • Diane R
    You have gotten great advice here the fireplace looks like it fits the home. We have bought nine homes and sold eight in the last 20 plus years and looked at thousands. Things we look for location, that it is priced right, and that any updates were fitting and to our taste. Imo altering this classic fireplace with tile could be problematic if you choose a pattern or color that buyers do not like.

    My husband holds the position to never let someone else spend your money for you. The designer has a interest here that might conflict with what is best for you.
  • PRO
    SJS Interiors
    You are going to sell and I don't think you need to invest in the fireplace. The first thing I noticed were the beautiful windows. I don't think the fireplace would be a deal breaker! Maybe putting something else over the mantle that is not squared at the top.
  • motupeg
    It seems like fireplace fits with the windows. I think making the fireplace "more modern" would mix styles. I like what the professionals are suggesting.
  • Melissa Gallagher
    Don’t do it; waste of money. Do what others said. Remove shells, paint brass. I would definitely not tile it....bad advice. I wouldn’t even change the lighting, the new owners will have their own taste.
  • Karen Web

    Thanks all! We are going to have the furniture staged (designer told us same thing re:furniture fitting the room) and the chandeliers replaced (also designer suggestion), and removing the brass on the fireplace as well. Our agent also thinks we need to update the fireplace...

  • hatetoshop

    I'll bet no potential buyers will comment on the fireplace -- a non-issue. Save your money. Good luck!

  • rooskie_d

    We bought this house even though I really, really hated the fireplace. It is two stories high, and some of the ugliest brick I have ever seen. We've now been here almost a year, and we still haven't done anything to it, and now I'm learning to live with it. In fact, there are several things I didn't like about this house, yet here we are! I guess there were enough things we liked about it that we bought it. A fireplace is probably not a deal breaker. And there are no guarantees that an updated fireplace would appeal more to a buyer. I like yours a thousand times more than I like mine.

    Other than painting the brass black and having the house staged, I don't think you'd get your money back out of the investment. For some reason, polished brass seems to be the kiss of death to some people. But that's an easy fix with a can of spray paint.

    Make the realtor do a little work to sell it. That's their job, after all. That's why they get paid the big bucks!

    Karen Web thanked rooskie_d
  • shirlpp

    Is that green marble on the fireplace and hearth? If so, maybe this is why they are saying to change it. I would not spend the money on going to the height of the palladium windows, but would change the green marble(if any).

    Karen Web thanked shirlpp
  • PRO
    Vancouver Gas Fireplaces

    That fireplace does look like it needs an update, but it's probably better to let the new owners decide if they want to tackle that project.

    If you were to decide on an update, get an insert with traditional logs and brick liner (we recommend Valor Fireplaces) and add a double mantel up to the ceiling of your fireplace instead of ripping up the mantel and adding tile. It will make it look a bit more grand.

    Attaching a pic of a double mantel.

    Karen Web thanked Vancouver Gas Fireplaces
  • PRO
    J Design Group - Interior Designers Miami - Modern

    I think All looks appropriate taking into consideration that this is for sale. The only suggestion would be to remove the shell motif that is on the wall. Good luck

    J Design Group
    225 Malaga Ave
    Coral Gables, FL 33134
    Ph: 305-444-4611

  • PRO
    Diana Bier Interiors, LLC

    I agree that renovating the fireplace is a total waste of money, and no one can say whether you will add to the selling price of the house. I'd install some ready-made long curtain panels on the windows to soften that wall. Place the hardware way up above the top of the arched windows and remove the shell decorations.

  • jbtanyderi
    It sounds as though you’re willing to spend a fair bit to second-guess someone else’s taste. Leave changes to the new owner.
  • Karen Web

    Thanks to all those who responded! I thought you might want to see where we ended up. We decided to do a smaller project to update the green-veined marble and brass framing, and we also took advice from several people (including the stager who recommended the big fireplace) to change out the lights. We also rented furniture from a staging company. I almost don't recognize my own home!! We went on the market yesterday, and our agent is expecting a quick sale (and thinks there will be bids over asking)- hope she is right. I will update when we sell.

  • Godswood

    Karen, looks great! I wish you the best!

  • Melissa Gallagher
    Wow! Stunning! I think you made the right choice....

    May I ask what tile you used? Is it stone? I’m in a similar situation right now....thx!
  • Linda
    I would not spend money on the fireplace to sell as it wont b a deal maker or breaker. You will be wasting your money. Have a R/E agent look at your home if you are unsure but you won't recoup your $$$.

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