Our DIY Faux Brick Fireplace

2 Materials
$500
3 Days
Medium

When we first moved into our builder-grade home, I remember being so excited to have a fireplace. Every year around Christmas I would think to myself “Ugh, I need a mantel!” Well, other projects always seemed to take priority, and here we are 14 years later – still no mantle and some ugly outdated tiles to go along with it. Well, this is the year – my DIY Fireplace makeover is finally happening!

I landed on a farmhouse style fireplace. We had recently added a shiplap wall so I knew I wanted to go with a dark wood mantel that was much wider than the fireplace itself and obviously that tile needed to go! I have been really into the white brick look, so I opted for a “faux brick fireplace” using tile and wide white trim.

Like I said, my design was based on a white brick look so I researched options for the fireplace. When we finished our basement, I was able to create a fake brick wall using wall panels, but that wasn’t going to work here. So after searching high and low I was able to find a “faux” brick fireplace tile at Home Depot online. It’s called Capella White Brick tiles that were 2 ⅓ x 10 inches.

Capella White Brick Tile – Home Depot

Before Starting

The first thing we did was paint the inside of the fireplace. It was a fairly simple process. We cleaned it out first, then used some cheap paintbrushes to apply the paint. It only took one coat and the difference it made was amazing.

Remove Trim

Once we finished painting the inside, it was time to remove the trim. This was a fairly quick process. I wanted a thicker white trim fireplace surround so this thin piece had to go.

Remove Old Tile

Now that the trim was off, it was time to start removing the old tiles. This process was a bit time-consuming but not too difficult. We started with removing some of the grout. Then we used a chisel and a hammer to loosen and pry off some of the pieces. Of course, we had some more difficult pieces that we had to break up and then remove little by little. Make sure you have a large trash bin close by as you will want to clean up as you go!

Fireplace Floor

In the process of removing the floor tiles, we had to deal with the floor. This was as simple as buying a new cement backer board to put down before we could start putting tile over it.

Fireplace Tile & Grout

Time to start the tiling! We had a little help with this step since I’m not the best at tile work.

We bought a fast setting mortar so we could grout within a few hours, and went with a bright white grout. (Yes it’s an all-white fireplace!)

I played around with how I was going to layout the tiles and decided on a half tile stagger to give it a realistic brick look. The tile started from the bottom and worked its way up. Next came the floor and finally the grout.

Wood Mantel

No fireplace remodel would be complete without a beautiful mantel! We went with a DIY fireplace mantel so I could get the width and depth I wanted. I am so excited by how ours turned out.


The box was built out of 1×6 pine boards. The cuts were made out of 45-degree angles because I wanted to make sure it looked like one solid piece when it was done. The mantel was done a few days prior to the project which gave me time to stain and seal it.

Pre-stain Wood Conditioner

Since I was using pine boards, I made sure to pre-stain condition the wood before staining it. (Pine is cheap but notorious for not staining well!) It took two coats of the pre-conditioner before I was ready to stain.


Stain Mantel

For the wood fireplace mantel, I used a Kona stain (2 coats) with a matte polyurethane coating to top it off.


Install Mantel

Finally, it was time to put up the mantel! In order to secure it to the wall, we had to add a 2×4 first to the wall and then secured the mantle into place with screws and some brad nails. A little wood filler in the holes and it was all done.

Fireplace Surround (Trim)

Our fireplace “surround” was going to consist of trim. I wanted a thicker trim so I went with a 5/4 x 6 x 8’ Select Pine Board. Since I wanted to create the illusion of the fireplace being wider, I made sure to start the trim as close to the edge as possible and go out from there. Before we put it up, I made sure to give it a nice coat of bright white paint.

Caulk

Last but not least, we added a bit of caulk around the edges to give it that finished look.

Now it’s time to start decorating 🙂

Materials




  • High-heat paint for inside of fireplace
  • 3 – 1×6 Pinewood Boards For Mantle
  • 1- 2×4 to mount mantle
  • Pre-condition wood treatment
  • Kona Stain
  • Varathane Matte Polyurethane
  • Tile – Capella White Brick from Home Depot
  • Trim – 5/4 x 6 x 8′ Select Pine Boards
  • White Paint
  • White Caulk


See how we added shiplap to the wall for under $100!

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Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Terry
    Terry
    on Apr 13, 2021

    Do you have a picture of the fireplace before your reno? It would have been nice to see what you started with. Nice job, very simple and classid.

    • Terry
      Terry
      on Apr 13, 2021

      Thanks for the pic! It sort of just disappeared in the large wall. Good job!!

  • Olga dawson
    Olga dawson
    on Apr 13, 2021

    I love what you did. I will save this idea. Is your fireplace functioning or just for looks? If it’ll be used, the white floor will be showing every ash drop. Otherwise, I do love fresh white

    • Brooke Grasley
      Brooke Grasley
      on Apr 13, 2021

      It's functioning, but I will say I haven't used it yet for that very reason! We did seal it so I hope it will clean up nicely.

Join the conversation

4 of 6 comments
  • Divababiexoxo
    Divababiexoxo
    on Apr 15, 2021

    Wow, I was very impressed with how much of a good job you did on this fireplace. The feux brick looks fantastic and looks easy to put in place. I've always loved brick and I really like your white brick. The mantle is absolutely stunning. You did a great job on the whole project. Great directions. It was easy to read. You did a really good job telling us how to do it. My favorite picture was the Christmas stockings hanging on the mantle

  • Mar
    Mar
    on Apr 15, 2021

    Great job! I love that you used a wider and "beefier" beam as the mantle...too many people use thin and narrow lumber for a mantle.

    • Brooke Grasley
      Brooke Grasley
      on Apr 15, 2021

      Thanks! My husband thought I was crazy when I told him the dimensions, I said "trust me...."

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