Revamp Your Fireplace

by Rachel Laurendeau on October 17, 2012

The fireplace can be the focal point of any room but if your fireplace is less that fabulous, you may not want to focus on it too much. Here are some fireplace makeover ideas to improve your fireplace’s pizazz.

Make the most of natural stone – in some cases, a natural stone fireplace may simply need a pick-me-up. Start by giving the stones and mortar a good cleaning to remove any traces of soot and ash. Add a solid mantelpiece and place a large decorative ornament above. Since stone can look busy, don’t clutter the mantel with lots of tiny knickknacks. By painting the walls in a contrasting color, you will make your rustic stone fireplace pop and get the attention that it deserves.

Period pieces – if you live in an older character home, you may want to try to upgrade your fireplace while staying true to the period and original style of the home. The easiest way to do this is to change the insert, clean the brick surround and give it a fresh coat of paint. The new insert could be a vintage-inspired reproduction or something modern. If you are uncomfortable changing the insert yourself, have an experienced home improvement expert do it for you.

Add a new mantel – you can build your own or buy a pre-made DIY mantel kit and install it over your existing fireplace. Once the new mantel is in, you can leave the existing brick or stone surround or you can reclad it.

Recladding – if you do not like the current materials, you can give your fireplace a completely new look by recladding it with tile, stone or faux stone. This can be done as a do-it yourself project or you can have the tile or stone installed by a pro. (A word about faux stone: while it can be less expensive and easier to install, I would caution against buying it online, sight unseen. Some of the lower quality faux stone looks very fake and you could spend quite a bit on shipping ,should you have to return it.)

Fireplace innovation – don’t have a fireplace or any way to install one? Think again. Ethanol fireplaces are easy to install and can be used anywhere in the home as they don’t need to be vented. Just like conventional fireplaces, they offer heat, the beauty of dancing flames, and some even crackle.

Updating your fireplace can help make it the gem that you have been looking for and can create the perfect ambiance in your living space. Talk to your local home remodeling expert for more information on fireplace upgrades and the best options for your home.

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