Monday, March 26, 2012

We Didn't Start the Fire-place (Actually, We Finished It!)

We absolutely promise this is our final post about the fireplace wall.  Feel free to check out our other posts in case you missed out on us building the new mantel (part 2), picking out new tile for the hearth or laying the new hearth tile.  It took a little longer than expected but we finally put the finishing touches on our fireplace wall makeover.

After the tile had set for 48 hours, it was time to grout.  Both of us prefer lighter grout lines to dark, so we went with a creamy, white grout that matched both tile colors.  This was our 5th (and hopefully final!) tile project in our house, so we've learned a lot of the do's and don'ts.  Reed is responsible for spreading the messy grout, and I clean it up; which is fitting in our house because he usually makes the messes and I clean them up.

You can see that even after the cleanup, our tiles were still pretty hazy but as we've learned, after a few wipe downs with a clean damp rag, the haze will go away.  If the haze won't come off with water, most tiling stores sell grout/haze removers to help with the stuff that is really stuck on there (if only we had known that when we tiled our bathroom shower!).

Up next on the makeover project was painting the inside of the fireplace.  A few months ago we tried to clean up the brick inside of the fireplace, but I just ended up with a slightly cleaner (but still very dirty looking) fireplace interior.  We figured if we painted it black, no one would be able to tell if it was clean or dirty (cause really, how often do people clean their fireplaces?). 

We bought some black Rustoleum high heat enamel paint and followed the directions on the back of the paint can (clean the floor/walls, let dry, apply paint) to make the fireplace look fresh & clean.  Now all the soot will blend right in and you will never know it's there! Muah-ha-ha.

Craftsman Reed came to the rescue by replacing the wooden trim that surrounded the tile with some new pieces of oak.  He measured (twice), cut (once), and stained the new wood to match our hardwood floors.  After the stain & poly had dried, he used 2 inch # 6 trim screws to attach the new oak trim to our existing hardwood floors. These screws are nice because the heads are small so they holes aren't as noticeable once they're filled.  These little trim details make a world of a difference when it comes to making a project look complete.

Last but not least, we whipped out the Stone & Grout sealer from Tile Shop (we had extra from sealing our kitchen backsplash) and applied it to our new "chevron-ish" tiles.  With the stone sealed, we could finally stop spraying water all over the place in an effort to view the true colors of the tile.  Ta da!

So that is it, ladies & gentlemen, our completed fireplace wall makeover. Just for fun, here's a final little before & after shot for you.


  1. wow, looks great! i love the tiles you used and that big chunky mantle!

    1. Thank you!! And thanks for stopping by- your blog is great!