Updating a stone fireplace

In fact, my mom had a wonderful painting of the wailing wall in Jerusalem on the wood mantel. Let’s cover up that piece-of-shit (sorry) and take a closer look at this room. This bizarre living room is in the same home as the wonderful kitchen we’ve all been dying over!!! Nancy Keye’s magnificent kitchen, shares air space with a giant turd. Or if you would like to enter the contest, all you need to do is order either the paint color/palette collection or Laurel’s Rolodex.It was truly amazing as the staircase to the second floor wrapped around it. There was something not right with the proportions.I have been doing my best to work with that extra gap by using swags and banners whenever I decorate the fireplace, but it is always A really noticeable large blank open space. The other thing I didn’t like about it was the travertine blends in with the wall and the mantel. I knew that redoing the fireplace with traditional methods was going to be a really expensive, so I”ve been putting it off.This was by far the worst part of the the project: The tile didn’t want to come off the backer board, so I ended up having to remove and replace it.. I received 2 boxes of natural edge stone (meaning the edges were finished to look like cut stone) and 1 box of flat edge (which are used side by side with each other for interiors seams only.) The boxes come sorted into the various colors (I was using the Autumn Mountain collection which is browns and tans) and so I needed to lay out all the stones in advance to get the correct mix of colors and to make sure that all my unfinished edges were made up of the natural edge stones. I used a miter box mostly so I wouldn’t cut into my wood floor.To do this I measured my surround and mapped it out on the floor in painters tape (since I couldn’t lay them out on the wall vertically.)I placed (and adjusted) all the individual stones until I got a look I was happy with: I also was able to cut down the stones to fit the space at this point. You don’t actually have to use one: Remember when cutting, you need to hide the cut edge on an inside seam, you always want the natural finished edge to be exposed.It took a while, but eventually I went around all the edges and got everything dry fitted.Next was the actual installation, and if you can butter toast, you can install this stuff. You just ‘back butter’ the individual tiles and smoosh them (technical term) into place.

It has always confounded me with all of the beautiful choices out there, how some come up with this stuff, but there it is. But then I saw this product at Lowe’s and I had a lightning bolt moment.I could use FAUX stone to get the look of a stone fireplace, but without the expense or headache of installing an actual stone fireplace. All it is, is a guessing game and a stressful one at that! Five seconds after Nancy closed on the house, she had the fireplace painted. The intention was to have that be a temporary fix and then to box it in and just get rid of it. she decided that she liked the look of the painted stone and so do I! Sorry, you know us New Yorkers are constantly ribbing our western neighbors! (Nancy Keyes’ hall and staircase before.) And then filled it with a couple of brown sofas and a big, black, misshapen leather chair; horrible lighting and faux marble-painted the columns. Hopefully, some of you will better understand why it’s impossible to do color consults long distance and based on a description. Let’s say that Nancy had painted her living room the color that the hall used to be.

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