Hi dear friends! Thank you for stopping to read this final episode of this summer, and part 2 of last week’s Home Sweet Farmhouse Home.
If you remember, last week I showed the first stages of our fireplace surround makeover. It was a nice fireplace, but it was ten years old. Besides that, I’m FREAKING OUT because my firstborn is going to COLLEGE in less than a month and so I’m redecorating my house to cope. (Because nothing helps stress like adding more stress, right?)
Also, because my third novel is set on a farm, I want to pretend I live on one, too.
Here are three more of the inspiration photos I found on Pinterest. You can see all my decorating pins by clicking here.
Dream fireplace #1:
Dream fireplace #2:
Dream fireplace #3:
Those are some lofty goals right there.
But I love a challenge.
Last week I showed you how I chose the river rock for the bottom of the surround.
Below is the wood planking I found at Lowe’s to use for the shiplap.
While it would be an expensive product for covering an entire room, it was perfect for the tiny space above the mantel. I only had to use one and one-half packs. The pieces are pre-cut into various sizes and they fit together tongue-and-groove style.
I didn’t have to make any cuts to these planks because I got lucky and they fit the space I needed them to perfectly.
And I used basic trim nails to hang them.
See how they come in different sized pieces so that a staggered look is made simple, too?
The other thing I love about these planks is that they are really thin.
This helped the 1×3 poplar I chose to frame them compliment them perfectly.
All up and caulked.
I love caulk.
Caulk makes everything better.
Even amateur carpentry.
Because the planks I used are not traditional shiplap and I wanted to create a patina of age and wear, I painted the grooves with plain black acrylic paint.
Then when I painted over with white, I purposely left imperfections.
But before I show you that…
…on to the grout.
I was terrified to put the grout on the stones. I was afraid it would run all over the carpet or that I’d picked the wrong color or that the stones would “get lost” in it and I’d never be able to wipe it off right.
I didn’t need to be skeered, though.
The Kind Man from Lowe’s and the directions on the back of the stone tile were most helpful. Here are some of the products and tools I used.
NOTE: Make sure you get SANDED GROUT. There’s a HUGE difference between this and the un-sanded variety and take it from me, it’s not pretty.
Here’s the grout, all mixed up.
The consistency reminded me of cake batter.
Below is a shot of the first stages of grout application.
This is when I started to get skeered again.
The rocks disappeared!
It was so messy!
I had it in my hair and in my teeth and all over the dogs.
I felt like I was a little kid who got out of the ocean and rolled in the sand.
That’s how messy it got.
Lots of wiping and sponging is involved.
And more wiping and sponging after that.
But finally, I started feeling like I was getting someplace.
This whole project reminds me so much of the way my novel-writing goes.
I get inspired.
I dig in.
I freak out.
And somehow, after the giant mess of it all…
…something beautiful emerges.
Here’s the before picture again:
And here’s the after.
I thought I might need a new piece of art to hang in the middle of the shiplap, but I really love this print of the man and woman praying.
On a farm.
So I kept it.
Now I have a farmhouse-ish fireplace to match my farm-inspired book. (Have you read it yet? 🙂 )
What about you?
What inspires you and your creativity?
What DIY projects are you working on at your place?
Thank you for reading this fun little Home Sweet Farmhouse Home blog series. I’m taking the rest of the summer off of projects so I can finish my fourth novel and
carve my heart out of my chest get my firstborn off to college. But after that, I may have some more projects to share with you. Would you like that?
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.