At long last, it’s time to share what we’ve been up to in that living room of ours! This was a big one for us. As I mentioned in our laundry reno, we wanted all our components out of the Living Room (ie: receiver, dvd player, sat box). This is what sparked the laundry room getting reno’d in the first place!

Here is at shot of our living room fireplace shortly before we moved in, so this is a before-before shot! We had nothing wired for TV (we thought that would only ever be in our basement space — we were wrong!), and we we’re not prepared at the time for the investment of finishing off the fireplace (but the intention has always been there)… so there it sat. Waiting for us to come back and finish her off…



before01Time to get to work… tons of planning before the first cut in the drywall. I think the planning takes as long as the actual work! You can see our plans stapled to the wall here. But we’re just getting started…

during01Oooh yeah… now it’s getting scary. What have we gotten ourselves into?

during04You’ll notice the hubby on the floor here. We are fishing wiring through our walls for the new (discreet) sound system we chose.

during02We ripped the drywall off in order to wire everything into the adjoining laundry room. Speaker wires, hdmi wires, electrical, the whole lot had to be handled at this stage. We also took this opportunity to beef up our insulation.


Meanwhile… in the garage….

mantlebefore01This is our mantle. We wanted something substantial. Solid wood preferred, but we didn’t know much about mantles. Getting estimates on a custom mantle were coming back way out of our price range — plus, we wanted something a little more natural looking anyway. We ended up purchasing this 14′ long 12″x6″ hunk of fir from our local lumber yard.

We spent days with it in the garage taking the belt sander to it for a smooth finish. Now, how do we get it on the wall?

during03We ended up having a friend we know that is a very handy welder create brackets for us — much the same principle as a floating shelf — we drilled holes into the mantle to accept the brackets, and secured to the wall. We also built supports into our fireplace surround to help hold the mantle. Here is the mantle the day it went up on the wall:

mantleduring01Once the wall was closed up with drywall and paint we could get started on the fireplace surround. The wires left hanging are awaiting speakers, and that black spider looking thing on the wall is the TV mount! Pretty serious stuff! ;)

during05Now for the building. You can see here we’ve got it framed out and drywalled. There are fabulous plans for a wainscoting and moulding vibe up top, and tile on the bottom… but this is just a tease (sorry!)… you’ll have to stay tuned for the finished product!

during06What do you think so far? Have you got a project you’re proud of? Email me some low-res images! I’d love to share your hard work! ;)

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