Anne G
Anne G
  • Hometalker
  • Greencastle, IN
Asked on Sep 7, 2012

What to do with this 1968 era fireplace without tearing out the brick?

ValerieGailReta Minnis
+14

Answered

We've recently torn out the paneling in this family room, replaced it with drywall and a new fireplace insert. Now what do I do? Any ideas how to update it? The mantel fell off when my son took the paneling off, so we need a new one, but what? One side of it is flush with a wall. I'm thinking about either cleaning up the brick and putting on some kind of new mantel or covering the brick with Nantucket Limestone from Heritage Stone. Any ideas? The black squares are old blowers that will either go or be covered over.
PS I do not want to tear brick out! And there are these two awful pockets on the hearth that end up holding a shovel, poker, dirt, etc... still have construction debri in them. What to do with them??? Thanks for any ideas.
what to do with this 1968 era fireplace without tearing out the brick, concrete masonry, fireplaces mantels
what to do with this 1968 era fireplace without tearing out the brick, concrete masonry, fireplaces mantels
17 answers
  • Lori J
    on Sep 7, 2012

    I would pour cement in the recessed areas and resurface the ledges. Paint the brick...but what is really weird is the sticky out part.

  • Anne G
    on Sep 7, 2012

    OH, that weird sticking out part is where the former owners had a free standing wood burning stove. We took it out and put in the woodburning insert. Didn't take it out because it's a nice place to set logs on cold winter nights so we don't have to go outside for firewood. Also, I love getting up in the morning when the fire is going and sitting right out in front of it. Probably does look weird!! What color would you paint the brick???

  • Marg C
    on Sep 7, 2012

    Anne, I like the sounds of using the Nantucket Limestone or any other stone besides brick. If it were me though, I would take out that square platform that's front and center. It would great with the stone and a new mantle.

  • Connie A
    on Sep 7, 2012

    I'd cover the brick in a stone as you said, and put granite tiles to cover the black. Also I'd tear out the shovel, poker, dirt protrusions and make the hearth straight across. Hope this help just a little.

  • Anne G
    on Sep 7, 2012

    I really like the idea of the granite tiles and the stone. You've all offered good ideas. I'm not sure about resurfacing the ledges. I want to do this project myself, but might need someone to do that. Is that an easy job for a do-it-yourselfer?

  • Corine E
    on Sep 7, 2012

    When I saw this, I thought of built in shelves to cover the brick...and build the mantel into it...it could be anything of your own creation at that point...and could stick out as much as you wanted it to.

  • Corine E
    on Sep 7, 2012

    I don't know what to do about that "sticky out thing" though! lol I would probably opt to tear it out so you could do as you wished with the remainder of what was left...a new floor covering or even a "hearth" of sorts if you wanted to make it a different material from the existing...with a "build up" if you will to make it blend more.

  • Anne G
    on Sep 8, 2012

    I've always thought about the idea of building shelves around the fireplace. I think I may just do that but also put stone on the parts that won't show. Thanks so much for the idea and the pictures really help!!!

  • Jeanette S
    on Sep 8, 2012

    I would fill in the holes on each side and definitely take out the front sticky-out-thingy. You can attach think spacers to the brick and then float out the wall with sheetrock. Once the redo was finished. I would then live with it for a while to determine just what I wanted to do as far as putting in bookcases, etc. Stain the concrete topper and put in some comfortable pillows. It is better not to rush in to do too much until you get a better feel of the room. Post photos!

  • Jeanette S
    on Sep 9, 2012

    SheilaG, I agree our verbage drives guys crazy, but they never fail to understand what we are talking about...mine says "we don't dare not understand" HA!

  • Reposhture Studio - Kim
    on Sep 9, 2012

    I would paint the brick a creamy white and add a very rustic thick, wood plank to the top. I would also leave the sticky out thing there and put cushions all over that area to make it a seating area and the arrange some regular seating around it. Kind of like using the sticky out thing like a coffee table. You could also stain the concrete to look like stone instead of cushions and that would tie in the whole rustic wood, painted brick cottage feel. Stack nice wood in the holes or use those holes as planters.

  • Fay Lepore
    on Aug 5, 2014

    I replaced the same old fire place, by refacing it with ceramic Tiles

    , my before, My after I used ceramics glued with no nails right to the brick and added grout I did remove the sill on the bottom I paint the cement sill and the top is done in texture board and painted to match I have final trims to make
  • Deb Titus
    on Aug 5, 2014

    I like the ideas of putting bookcases on either side of the fireplace, but I would keep the two 'pockets' and turn them into planters with plant lights on the undersides of the shelves above them. They would be great to put potted plants in, and would look awesome!

  • Reta Minnis
    on Oct 18, 2014

    I used stone spray paint to paint over a brick wall behind my wood stove. Valspar and Rustoleum both have one. I have used both but it was Rustoleum one the bricks behind the stove. I bought two shades of gray. I painted the whole thing one color first and decided I wanted a little contrast so I took a piece of cardboard and cut out the size of one of the bricks and put a light coat over one brick every so often. I loved it and so did everyone that saw it. There are a few colors of the stone paint to choose from. I like the idea of making planters out of the holes. I would also stain or paint the concrete hearth. The stone spray paint would work but I would be worried about cleaning it. There is a hammered spray paint that I used in my bathroom that I really like. If the platform that sticks out is eating up room you need take it out. If not I like the idea of painting it to match the rest of the hearth and making a removeable cover with OSB (usually cheapest) and use a fairly thick foam and cover it in a fabric of your choice. Then if you choose to remove to use for a different purpose you can do that. Would make a nice place for extra seating when you have guests.

  • Gail
    on Dec 18, 2014

    I don't like the "sticky-out-thingy either. As for the holes at the ends of the hearth they look like they are separate pieces, if they are and it's concrete maybe the top of the sticky-out-thingy could be cut to put in new solid ends. I like the idea of bookcases or shelves to cover the vents too. Good luck.

  • Valerie
    on Feb 24, 2016

    If somebody were able....carefully remove the brick box that sets in front of the hearth. Remove the old vents and Use the bricks to fill in. Then have the cement slab cut to finish off the tops of the gapping holes atop the hearth. A cheap fix.

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