So glad you decided to join me on this house tour. Just pretend that there are freshly baked cookies accompanied by a pitcher of sweet tea (this is the South you know)…
Time to check out the living room. Or part one of the living room.
- I drew on the wall where I wanted the fireplace to go with a pencil. I taped off what I thought would be the edges so as not to get thinset on the rest of my nice wall.
- Next I put the mirror up. I just used the thinset to put it up. I used that to put the moulding up around it as well and I cut the moulding with a utility knife. Probably not what you are supposed to do but it worked.
- I started tiling from the bottom ( I taped my moulding). I used the trowel to spread the thinset on the wall and then pressed each paver in as I went. I had to hold each paver for a minute or so or it would not slide down the wall. Learned that after I had a paver bang my shin. Once it was set though it was good. I learned this the hard way because I wanted to move one and figured out that once they are attached they will NOT come off. Good to know that I would not wake up to a pile of rubble in my living room. I did not use spacers – I just sort of judged which is why it isn’t exactly perfect. Also, the pavers are very imperfect which makes it difficult if you are looking for straight lines. They vary a little bit in size and depth. A couple were thicker than others so I ended up not using them.
- Every other row that I started tiling needed to start with a half paver so I broke pavers by banging them on my front steps. Of course that didn’t make perfect pieces but once again – adequate for this project. I kind of like the not so perfect aspect.
- Next I did the grout. I’d never done grout before but basically I just spread it all around with the float. Because the tiles are really porous the grout sort of stuck in them and it looked scary. I’ll admit it – I thought I’d messed up a good thing. I did a lot of scrubbing with the float and sponge but the grout never did wipe right off like it does on ceramic tile. However, once I painted the fireplace you couldn’t tell at all. Just make sure your grout is neat between rows. I also did a line of grout around the sides. Maybe it would have wiped off better had I sealed the pavers somehow??
- After I liked the height of my tile I added the mantel. It is really an extra large mantel shelf so I followed the manufacturer’s instructions which were simple.
- I started painting after I had given it a few days to set. I used plain ol’ white paint. I know that it took several coats and a lot of poking the brush into little holes etc. I wish I had a pic of the plain white fireplace but no such luck (Monday morning quarterback here). I really liked the white but it didn’t really blend with my room and sort of stuck out so I decided to glaze it with brown glaze. I painted it on and used a rag to get it in the crevices and then wiped it off. This was my second experience with glaze as I had previously glazed my front door . It is pretty easy – it stays “open” for an hour so you have a lot of time to figure out how heavy you want it to be. I let the glaze dry for several days before I poly’d.
I thought I was done after that but it looked just a tad bit unfinished. I liked it but it wasn’t quite complete. I ended up adding the moulding to the sides when adding wainscot to my living room. I say “I” but I must be honest and admit that I did have a little bit of help with that (hey- I was a newbie, okay?). I’ll talk more about the molding & wainscot in my upcoming living room tour.
This is the final product….for now. I am thinking of adding some beadboard to the top at some point…this fireplace might fall into the “never done” category.