My Husband Made My Dream Fireplace Come True

Greg Paige Roussel
by Greg Paige Roussel
This summer, I planned on repainting the living area of my house, just to lighten and brighten it up a bit. I ended up with a major redesign and it all started with a text to my husband.
This is my dream fireplace. I texted my husband and asked if he would build it for me, if I painted it. (He hates to paint.) He said YES!! He is really sweet.

I love the refined, rustic feel. I am going for a lake-house feel and I think this brings it.
This is what we were working with: it was a rustic, dark, old-world look, but it had some of the same bones as my dream mantle, and the height and ceiling details were similar.

We can do this. Not sure if it shows, but the surround is a gold stone. I painted it grey with chalk paint - they say that works on anything! So far so good. :)
The hardest part was getting the proportion and scale just right. We needed the actual mantel to be thicker and longer so we added a board to the top and made a stair step to get the length we needed. That was cost effective and simple, and I like the interest it adds.

*NOTE: When trying to get scale right take a picture. For some reason looking at the flat pic makes things much clearer. At times, I would put the dream pic side by side with a picture of mine to see what was off.
Once we got it built, it was time for paint. I found a recipe for weather wood on It is a layering dark stain, sanding and DRY brushing. There's a learning curve, as you will see shortly.
I know NOT cute!! I wanted that refined rustic look and there is nothing fine about this. It needed more DRY brushing with the white.
This is much better. It is becoming lake-house chic! :)
This is my "Pinterest" moment. I am NOT a photographer and I do not know how to edit and filter. So, it is what it is.Other than the A/C vent reflection, this pic is my fave!!
This is the finished fireplace. It is just perfect.
I think we might need a nice glass of wine to go with this cheesy pic!!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 11 questions
  • Ann Ann on Dec 05, 2015
    How did you/he make the round corbels under the mantel?

  • Kari Kari on Dec 06, 2015
    I LOVE this! I have a stash of barn board I want to make a faux fireplace with. Did you buy your corbels for under the mantel or did hubby make them? If so from what materials? Thanks!

  • Ann Ann on Dec 07, 2015
    How did you make the round part of the corbels holding up the mantel?

Join the conversation
3 of 101 comments
  • Whi5889890 Whi5889890 on Dec 24, 2017
    Your fireplace looks wonderful!!! Fab team effort!! I really like the fact that your fireplace can be viewed from both sides. What’s the view from the other side? ;)

  • Itsmemic Itsmemic on Jan 19, 2018
    just love this...and the picture of you two is touching :) Cherish these moments.....