The Fireplace

Time for the fireplace to get remodeled.  With Phase II of the flooring project coming up, we wanted to get the fireplace done so as not to mess  up or scratch the new floors. It was pretty ugly, the contractor had used the same tiles that he used in front of the fireplace as he did on the wall around it.  It has some wood moulding around it, that we had refinished with this spray that looks like granite.  The mantle that Mike made for us used the same finish, so it kinda looked like everything went together.

The first thing to so was rip all that out.

We took out all of the crappy tile, and took down the drywall so that we could replace it with cement board. We’re going with a stacked stone, and we needed a good solid foundation to make sure the tile adhered to the wall.  The tiles were 18×6 inches.

After cleaning everything up, we started putting up the cement board.

We’re going to put a floating mantle up so I had to make preparations for that.  First I cut out some of the studs.  This is a non-load bearing wall so I wasn’t too concerned about messing anything up.

I made a header and put 4 3/4″ bolts through it.  This is what I was going to hang the mantle on.

After that, I put up the rest of the cement board.

Cutting holes in the boards to allow the bolts to poke through.

I nailed up a piece of door molding, making sure it was level, across the top of the fireplace. Of course like everything else in the house the fireplace wasn’t level, it was off about a 1/4″ from left to right.  Because the wall was going to be a focal point, I wanted to make absolutely sure that the tile was level.  I had to put padding on the four bolts, I kept banging my head on ’em.  We laid the tiles out before hand to make sure we got a good mix with the different variations.

As we worked our way up it went fairly quick as the tiles were a good size and covered a lot of area.  I had a cheap tile saw that I used to cut the ends on the left or right sides

At the top, it took a bit more time as we had to cut the last tiles at an odd angle to fit. Cheryl’s cleaning of the bits of thinset that oozed between the joints.

We put down a couple of layers of backer board for the hearth and put up the rest of the tile on either side of the fireplace.

Tile’s all finished and I just slid the mantle on the bolts to see how it’d look.  We’ll glue it in place eventually.