^ Our first attempt at laying out the tiles. You can see that there are some serious blotches goin’ on.
^ Yep. Lots of spots to fix. ^
^ After going back to Lowe’s for a butt-ton more tile because I didn’t have enough of the right shade of gray, this was the more cohesive look we ended up with. ^
(I actually evened out the colors in the bottom of the right leg a bit more too,
but didn’t get a photo of that)
^ The ‘After’ is so much better than the ‘Before’, amiright? Well, I think it is anyway, and I’m the one who has to look at this thing all day urrrrry day, so my opinion on this matter wins. Haha! ^
^ This is the stone we used. So, so, so much of this stuff. Again, we had to majorly over-buy to get enough tiles of the same shade. I’ll just be returning the excess that we didn’t end up using. ^
Fireplace Makeover Update (and tips below)
Happy Thursday friends! First of all, I want to thank you again for all the love and support on my last post about what’s going on with Charlie. All of this is so strange you guys — talking about it so openly. There’s such a vulnerability to it. It’s so personal and my emotions about it are SO on the surface that it can be hard to talk about.
And then I always wonder how much to share, how much do people want to know, DO they even want to know, etc. etc. Sigh… these are weird, awkward things to navigate. Your warm response always makes it feel easier to open up though, and I so appreciate that. I also have to remind myself that my motivation for sharing now is more than anything about creating awareness for her disease and helping others who may need this information. And those reasons make it worth it to be vulnerable, regardless of the response. Ok enough about all of that. Thank you, is really what I’m trying to say. Thank you for giving a crap. 🙂
OK – so now let’s talk about something else: our FIREPLACE!
I wanted to give you all a real quick update on the progress and share a few tips I’ve learned so far in this ‘fireplace makeover’ process.
And just in case there’s some confusion, allow me to clarify: this is not a DIY situation. Chase and I are not doing this ourselves. We’re not that cool (haha). There are parts of it that we’ve done on our own – like selecting the materials, laying them out… ya know, the really hard stuff 🙂 – but for the rest we def hired a contractor.
However, contractor or not we’ve still learned quite a bit through this process, so I promise that once this thang is completed, I’ll compile ALL the tips we have into a ‘finished product’ post. Word!
Here are some ‘Fireplace makeover’ tips I’ve garnished thus far…
FIREPLACE MAKEOVER TIPS:
- Scour Pinterest and search Google for images of what you think you want before buying your materials.
- Why am I suggesting this? Because sometimes what’s in your head doesn’t translate well to real-life (hand raised), so it’s good to see pictures of finished products in real houses and real life to spur inspiration for your own project. You need some inspiration. Or at least I always do.
- Buy a sample or small portion of the material you think you want to use, bring it home, hold it up to your fireplace, then make the final call on yay or nay.
- Why am I suggesting this? Because initially we had purchased a really pretty herringbone/chevron tile that I was pretty darn certain I wanted to use for the fireplace. Once I bought it, brought it home and held it up to my fireplace though, I realized how very much I did NOT want that… like, at all. The scale of it was way too big, it looked way too busy, and overall I just suddenly hated it. Haha! Lesson learned: try with a small portion of the material before you buy a butt ton of it.
- And once you know for sure what material you want to use, OVER-BUY BIG TIME and then return what you don’t use.
- Why am I suggesting this? Because at least in our case, buying way, way more tile than we actually needed was absolutely necessary because I was trying to find tiles of a very similar shade (see the next point down for more explanation).
- Side note: make sure you know the return policy before you do this obviously, and keep your receipt! We got all of our tile from Lowe’s, but I know that some places don’t allow returns on things like natural stone. So double check the return policy before you follow this step, for the love!
- If you’re going to use marble tiles like we did, you will for sure want to lay them out first.
- Why am I suggesting this? Because natural stone like marble varies significantly in tone and general hue. See picture #1 above! That was the first stab at laying out the tiles. Now take a look at the ‘Before/After’ pic above. Big difference, right? Point being: unless you really don’t give a crap about a cohesive color flow, I would not recommend just slapping this stuff up there willy-nilly, nor would I recommend leaving it up to your contractor to decide the order of the tiles…
- …because as you can see, some tiles are super white, some are super gray, some have tons of variation, some have very little, and some actually have quite a bit of brown in them. To get a really cohesive look, I highly suggest you hand-pick each tile that’s going to go up on the fireplace. Tedious? Mmmmyeah a little. But worth it I tell you! Don’t worry that I had to make a special trip to Lowe’s for more tile because I had tons and tons of stuff that was unusable – either way too white or way too dark gray. So picture me on my knees, in the middle of the tile aisle in Lowe’s, opening each little ‘Natural Stone’ box and hand selecting the tiles that were the right shade. YEAH. That happened. Again, totes worth it though.
- Summary: I mean, I might be a little OCD when it comes to this stuff, but just trust me – take the time to lay the tiles out, and do it yourself. You’ll be happier with how it turns out, guaranteed.
More tips to come, and hopefully lots more progress! I can’t wait until they get started on the mantle! I bet I’ll have lots of little tips on that part, because he’s custom-building it. Eeeeep! I’m excited… and scared… and excited… and scared… mostly excited. 🙂
Is there any other information you’d like me to share about this guys? Like cost, maybe? Orrrrrr anything else? Let me know what details you’re interested in knowing and I’ll try to include them in the next post about the fireplace. (or maybe you don’t give a crap about the fireplace… and that’s cool too. 😉
Have a Thursday!
Thanks for reading.