…Major Cover Up

Whenever I look to change something in my home, my ultimate goal is to design something that isn’t permanent in case the next homeowner isn’t a fan. We relocate every few years so we aren’t in one place for long and I’m always afraid people will hate my design ideas and I want the change to be quick and easy to make my home appeal to them.

This weeks project was our fireplace mantel. I wanted something more rustic than what we have. I have completely transformed the entire fireplace wall since we bought the house but I wasn’t 100% satisfied with the full result. 

Here is what the place looked like when we moved in: Cookie cutter, builder grade, drab and boring.

This is what I turned it into: Much better. But, I still longed for another rustic element, like a large, bulky, rustic, distressed mantel. 

So, I went to the drawing board and decided to make a sleeve of sorts that just slips over my existing mantel that can be removed without effort.

I made the box out of:

– 1×6 boards

– 1×4 board

– 1/4″ round trim piece

The piece is held together with wood glue and brad tacks. 

I cut the two 1×6 side pieces the exact length that my mantel sides measured. My 1×6 front piece was cut 1 1/2 inches longer than my front mantel measurement so that the end pieces cut edge was covered and not visible from the front. I glued and nailed these piece together. My 1×4 board was cut the same length as the mantel and that is the underside of my box to cover the gap underneath. Also glued and tacked in. The 1/4″ round is what holds the mantel cover over the existing mantel. They simply slide over the top of the existing mantel and hold on the decorative rustic piece.   

 (Yes, that is MY toolbox…no, my husband is not allowed to use it…)

I distressed the wood pieces by beating them with a hammer, scraping out chunks with a chisel, tapped a screw end to make worm holes, tapped screw head and thread marks into the wood and then stained with Rustoleum “Honey” stain.  Then, mantel cover just slides over existing mantel. Perfect fit.

   Finished look:

   Now, if the next homeowner hates it, they can simply slide it off and trash it. That’s my kind of DIY.

Design time: 10 minutes

Build time: 20 minutes

Cost: $20 

Happy Tuesday!!

Thanks for reading.



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