Chimney that we can't use

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What can I do with this chimney right in my living room that we can't even use? Should I expose the brick? Any decor suggestions? It's just so blah and awkward. There is no way to tear it out.
q chimney that we can t use, home decor, home decor dilemma, Awkward chimney
Awkward chimney
  17 answers
  • MN Mom MN Mom on Jan 26, 2016
    Cyndee is this covering interior duct work? If indeed has brick under the existing Sheetrock it would be neat accent but it could also bring more attention to the awkwardness. It might be fun to add wood trim the height and depth if the part that juts out, add shelves and create a faux bookshelf for displaying items. It would look like a custom built in
    • Cyndee Cyndee on Jan 26, 2016
      @MN Mom Thanks for the idea! Never would have thought of the faux bookshelf.
  • Debi53 Debi53 on Jan 27, 2016
    I agree with Barbara about the bookcase. I will add to her great idea if you want to do something more custom, if you have the budget, and if your room setup will allow for my idea.. Have a matching bumpout cabinet built at the other end of this wall with doors on it and shelves installed between the two bumpouts. Or you could put a chest, sofa or other piece of furniture between the bumpouts. Have trim and knobs/handles installed on the chimney to match the cabinet you build. Paint it all the same. Then it will look like you have matching built-in cabinets. Only you will know that one actually opens for storage and the other is "faux."
    • See 3 previous
    • Cyndee Cyndee on Jan 28, 2016
      Will do.
  • Lyn1476416 Lyn1476416 on Jan 27, 2016
    Put electric fireplace in it. Problem solved!
    • Cyndee Cyndee on Jan 27, 2016
      @Lynnb7764 I would love to have a fireplace! Need pictures for ideas.
  • Wanda.ll Wanda.ll on Jan 27, 2016
    By what I can see. I would make a photo gallery out of it. Top to bottom. Now if it is the wall with the bird on it?Would like you to step back and take a few more photos to see the rest of room and how it looks in room .Then more ideas maybe will come your way.
  • MN Mom MN Mom on Jan 27, 2016
    Here's my faux cabinet/ bookcase
  • LD LD on Jan 27, 2016
    The first thing is to find out what this the purpose of this chimney, sometimes they are used for the venting of gas furnaces and hit water heaters, and therefore it may only be cinder block or just metal duct work, plus also check to see if the ceiling beam is structural or decorative. If there is brick underneath the drywall, then I would say highlight the bricks and build a bookcase next to it out of Reclaim wood.
    • Cyndee Cyndee on Jan 27, 2016
      @LD as far as I know, there were ducts in our house. We were so upset that they covered them up, because we could have put central air in had they not covered up the ducts. I'm sure there is brick underneath the drywall, we can see the rest of the chimney in our attic. Really wish we could use it as a fireplace. It is still an awkward spot for a fireplace though. Sigh.
  • Sandra Hellewell Sandra Hellewell on Jan 27, 2016
    Cyndee if you really want the brick, you could cover that chimney with brick veneer which gives you the look of brick but not so costly. It would add texture and interest to an area that is obviously bothering you!
  • Tamara Wilkerson Tamara Wilkerson on Jan 27, 2016
    I would expose the brick and leave an area to frame out a message board using chalkboard paint!
  • Dave Bain Dave Bain on Jan 27, 2016
    Why can't the chimney be removed ? Is it being used as support for ceiling or floor?
  • Lyn1476416 Lyn1476416 on Jan 27, 2016
    Have not install electric fireplace yet as we are still playing with it. Use one with a remote
  • LD LD on Jan 27, 2016
    What type of heating system do you have? Since cold air falls, if your home is all one floor, you could install central a.c. via the ceiling. The question would be, if this chimney is built for a fireplace vs a chimney for your heating system. If your desire is to have a fireplace, you can install a freestanding fireplace, which is vented through the wall and then the chimney runs on the outside of the home via a metal chimney. Here's a link for you. http://homeguides.sfgate.com/can-install-wood-burning-stove-dont-chimney-62724.html
    • See 1 previous
    • LD LD on Jan 28, 2016
      Although electric heat is more costly than gas hear, there is a good side to it, you have constant heat to the room vs an air force heating system which cycles on and off, and when it first cycles on you have cool/cold air coming out. If you get yourself a good humidifier for your home, you will find that it is warmer feeling and your body and home will feel better, just make sure that you set the humidity setting to 40%, which is what is recommended.
  • Teresa Teresa on Jan 27, 2016
    If you are looking for interest in the brick will add interest if you want rustic go with adding a fire place there are so many options. I like modern and would add shelf's next to the brick made up of pipes and old wood bolted to the wall to use the pocket that the brick make and you can fill it with anything. Hope that helps!
  • Capernius Capernius on Jan 27, 2016
    When I am faced with this type of dilemma, the first thing I ask myself is, "what kind of look do I want in this place/spot?" Regardless of how feasible it is or is not, that is the first thing you need to decide. Next Question you have to get an answer for is, "is this providing support for the ceiling, roof or floor(s)?" the best way to get an answer to that is via contractor or the house Blueprints. Until these Questions are answered, there is very little you can do about this chimney This is prolly not the answer you wanted to hear, but it is the answer I think you NEED to hear.
  • Barbara Barbara on Jan 27, 2016
    U agree with Capernius, what look do you want to achieve. I personally love the look of exposed brick. Brick can be contemporary, but it most resembles a more traditional flavor of decor. Depending on accessories, it can also be country or farmhouse rustic. That us the first question, what style, genre are you looking for. Personally, I'd expose the brick - check for stability and go from there.
  • Shirleypoppy Shirleypoppy on Jan 28, 2016
    Hi, I have or had exactly the same width of chimney breast in my living room. It just looked strange so, I had made a a normal sized chimney breast out of ply wood to place over it, Laura Ashley wallpaper and now it just looks like a normal room with a cosy old cast iron fire place. Hope this gives you yet another option.
  • Capernius Capernius on Jan 28, 2016
    Please understand that I am not telling you what to do/not do, nor am I being a smart alec of any kind, but "I think" is usually not good enough. IF, if you wish to remove even a part of this chimney to flatten out the wall, you need to be 100 % POSITIVE one way or the other, otherwise you could weaken the support structure which COULD, not saying it will, but could, cause a floor, ceiling, roof, or even the entitre house to cave in. HOWEVER, if you do not have any plans on removing it, then you may wish to speak with an interior designer, and/or someone you trust that has a knack for interior design. In an old farm house I used to own, I had 2 of these; 1 in the kitchen & one in the upstairs bedroom. I installed a wood burner in both places & used the chimneys to my advantage...however, I did have them professionally cleaned & checked for structural integrity first though. There are many things that can be done with this wall.... it just depends on what your budget is & how much money you are willing to spend. But PLEASE, please find out first if it supports anything. Be 100% positive.
  • CK CK on Jan 29, 2016
    The question I'd ask a client if he/she had this issue is "Do you want to enhance it or try to disguise it and make it less obvious?" Exposing the brick will enhance it. Painting it the same color as the walls will help it blend in. You can always play it up a little then too by putting some gorgeous artwork on it. Get a long, narrow frame to fit nicely on it. As for the artwork, use what you love....maybe even a mirror would work. I'd have more suggestions if I saw the room in person :)
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