We did the fireplace. By "did" I mean, we took down the old surround and put up a new one. It meant hauling something like a 1000 pounds of rocks up 36 steps to the parking lot where we could load them into the van for haul-away. Then, repeat with bringing new material in, down the 36 steps. My legs are buff. So are my arms from pounding at the wedge to take the old rocks down.
Here's where we started.
|Fireplace before. River rock with timber beam mantle and mismatched hearth.|
We had a helper with the hammer. Make sure you're wearing your "ear mupps" when you work.
We came back without the little helper. This makes noisy, time sensitive jobs like tiling much more manageable. I found out just a couple days before we were going that we were definitely going to put the fireplace surround up. Panic! I hadn't selected a surround! We visited Menard's and Home Depot first, we generally prefer them. Struggle! I could have settled for a few of their options, but nothing was begging for me to put it around my fireplace. The night before we left I was told we were going to buy the tile. Pick it in one shot. Go. We drove all the way to Lowes. all. the. way. Best choice of the week! They had so many good options that I had to make a top 3 choices list and get Brian's input. After mixing and matching hearth and wall possibilities, we settled on... Wait, you'll see it as soon as you scroll down!
We had to replace most of the drywall and prep the floor with cement board. We also had to figure out the "hearth" size and shape - wanted to make sure it was reasonably proportional. We laid the hearth first, so we could land the new rocks right down on top of it. Got that done the night before the big wall job. Didn't take pictures at that point... Here's the first progress picture for the wall.
|Mmm, looking good!|
|Ha ha, it almost makes the orange wood paneling look good!|
Here he is polishing up his shiny granite.
Gotta give that hot before and after one more time...