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The One Feature Jess Is Ripping Out Of Her Apartment… JK APRIL FOOLS (But A Facelift IS Happening)

This little rule follower would never rip out an architectural feature without permission. Plus I have the best landlord maybe in the whole world so Joan if you are reading this please don’t worry:) BUT I do have some pretty exciting MOTO news. Well, first off I have a few of the major pieces locked down so we are in actual motion, people. However, that’s not the news because that would make for a pretty boring and short blog post. “Hey, guess what? I got some stuff coming in a few months, BYE!” So while no demo will be taking place, the fireplace is still getting a MAJOR facelift. Like, go to a foreign country to heal and come back looking like a brand new person kinda major.

Here’s the deal. While the place of the fireplace may be original in location, the materials are not. Actually, it’s got a not-great faux antique tile on the exterior that REALLY bums me out. Plus the color depresses me. Remember my “accidentally goth” Christmas mantel??

are you also sad looking at this thing?

If everything was the same but it was, say white? Or an awesome real aged tile? Then all would be great. But this thing is throwing off my whole design and after talking to Em and mentioning that I was thinking about covering it, a resounding, “yes!” blurted out of her mouth… so guess who I called??? DIY DAD, of course. I talked him through my plan and like the sweet, pain-in-the-butt angel he is, he said, “No problem, Bungo.” Bungo is a family nickname:) “Yo, Bungo!” was regularly shouted in our home and anyone within earshot would yell back, “WHAT?” Not weird at all. Also, maybe I’ve told that little anecdote before? IDK. Ok back to the fireplace.

This is going to be a 100% no damage total fireplace cover that is if it turns out how I plan, will totally elevate the space and make it really unique to me! I should mention this is NOT a working fireplace. If that were the case then well, that would be a problem. I pitched a “Faux Fireplace” post last year that never happened…obviously. So now is my chance! Here’s the plan. I’m going to show you the rough idea of my design, a couple of color options, and then get into some other great faux mantel surround ideas if you are looking to create a really awesome focal point in your space. Something for everyone.

Ok, here is the mantel/fireplace again sans Christmas Goth but also please ignore this styling:)

See what a bummer the color and finish are??? I don’t know why but it just makes me have low energy whenever I look at it. I know that sounds dramatic but since I have a plan I think I can totally remedy this.

So first let’s go back to the inspiration (but the updated version):

As you can see, I want special shapes, a good dose of brown with pops of color, and an overall European vintage feel. I’m real weird about showing mood boards too soon because I personally love surprises and want my living room to be a surprise to all of you! This fireplace idea “reveal” might be as close as I get to reveal what my plans are…

Here is my inspiration shot:

design by ecru studio | photo by suiyu studio

Not sure what that material is that Ercu Studio used but I think with some PVC pipes and limewash paint I could totally get the same look. So this example is just a great focal piece on a flat wall. I have an actual fireplace to cover both over and inside. So this is my VERY rough plan. It looks like it may be ugly but I think it’s going to be sick.

I told you it was rough. But my dad has already cut the pieces of wood that are going to go inside of the fireplace and over the hearth so they can be tiled whenever. I want to be able to light real candles and tile seems like the safest way to go. I think I’m going to hire someone to do that part but who knows, maybe I’ll take a stab! When my dad gets here in a couple of weeks we’ll buy and cut the PVC pipes. I’ll likely paint alone because Les Bunge has already tapped out of the part of the project. This Bungo is on her own.

My only question is am I going too safe with the off-white tile? Should I do a color? Does this feel like PTSD from my vanity mirror post in which you think it won’t actually happen? I guarantee this one WILL get done because I want to make me, you, and the generous sponsors of my decor happy. Here are two other options:

I don’t know why the pink tile looks so strange in photoshop but I think regardless the blue is kinda sexy and unexpected. Do you agree? Do you prefer the off-white?? I know you don’t know the design plan but know that browns, pinks, and blues are big players.

So that’s my update and I hope it maybe got you more excited about my living room and not at all horrified:)

But that’s not it! Remember that I promised you more?? My love for faux mantel surrounds goes back to my days in Brooklyn when I was convinced we needed a mantel surround to create a focal point in our living room. But then time, energy, money, and bed bugs got in the way. Normal stuff. So for those faux mantel surround dreamers like me who are looking for a focal point in their living room and want some more looks, I’ve got you…

Let’s start with the modern option from the insanely talented Franchesca of Fall for DIY.

I mean for the right home this is AWESOME! It’s modern, chic, bold yet quiet, and the best part is that she gives you a total step-by-step guide on her blog. Had I seen this post back in the BK, I would have totally done this.

Now let’s get a little more classic with this modern rustic beauty by Caitlin and Manda of The Merrythought.

So not only is this one a bit more classic but it is also set up to be an actual working electric fireplace. How are some people so talented?? I love the clean lines but also the special painted tine ceiling tiles. Such a great option and they also have a step-by-step guide.

Last we have the least laborious and most vintage option. Hooray!

photo by sarah elliot | via remodelista

First off, I love this shot so much and it’s from Sarah Elliott and Lisa Przystup‘s book, Upstate: Living Spaces with Space to Live. I know both Em and Sara have it and LOVE IT. I need to get on the cool kid train and get myself a copy. Second, look how awesome that mantel looks. It’s perfectly aged and looks seamless in this home’s design aesthetic. The trick with vintage mantel surrounds is that your home also needs to have a lot of vintage character for it not to feel out of place. That’s just my personal PSA. But if you happen to have a beautiful old home in need of a focal point then this may be your answer! Here are some I found on Etsy:

1. Antique Wood Fireplace Mantel Surround | 2. 1890’s Antique Trim Surround | 3. Vintage Cast Iron Fireplace Mantel Surround | 4. Faux Fireplace & Mantel | 5. Antique Cast Iron Fireplace Surround | 6. Farmhouse Fireplace Faux Mantel Surround

I think any of these would look great in the right style home. Full disclosure #2 is a window trim but could totally work for a small space! And #4 is clearly not vintage BUT if you aren’t a DIYer and love this idea here is your answer.

Ok y’all, what do you think? What’s your tile color preference? Are you into this look as a focal point solution? Also, sorry about the prank. Hopefully, I didn’t make you too mad:)

Love you, mean it.

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Cat
6 months ago

This is uncomfortable and reprehensible behavior. It’s a turn off to read. I’ll probably come to this site less and less.

HerselfInDublin
6 months ago
Reply to  Cat

Except you obviously didn’t read it because it says *in the second paragraph*, in CAPITALS, that ripping out an architectural feature without permission is an April Fools prank.

LL
6 months ago

Oh thank god because seriously I was so mad. But your sentence revealing the joke was the best Jess!

Nancy
6 months ago
Reply to  Cat

April’s fool?

LouAnn
6 months ago
Reply to  Cat

You’re awfully humorless. But then you’re a cat so …

Sally
6 months ago
Reply to  LouAnn

Wow, nasty. I don’t agree at all with her opinion and I think she possibly misunderstood something, but at least she expressed it civilly.

Rusty
6 months ago
Reply to  Sally

I agree. Uncalled for and nasty.

Eliot
6 months ago
Reply to  Cat

huh?

Diane
6 months ago

Ok Jess, YES. Your new surround is going to be sick and I’m all in. Regarding color options, my gut reaction is that the bolder colors distract from the gorgeous textures and shapes of the surround. Also, fireplaces tend to collect shadows, which is cool for candles but in terms of highlighting this beautiful design, the brighter interior will bring more light and dynamic energy to the fireplace during all hours of the day. And also ALSO I just read a bit on My Domaine about how ivory should be respected as a color all of its own, not just “off white,” as we so often dismiss it. Ivory deserves its own glory. So, for those three reasons, allow me to present my central thesis: the off white – ahem, ivory – tile is best.

Kimberly
6 months ago
Reply to  Diane

Agree 100% that the textures are the star here and adding a color will compete with them. I love the monochrome mockup the most.

Kristin
6 months ago
Reply to  Diane

I came here to say the same thing. The textures are lovely, and they’re showcased best using the same color. Different colors detracts from the wonderful textural element. Also, if I were your landlord, I would want you to go with the white tile; it’s the hardest for future renters to change, so best to keep it a more neutral option.

Lisa
6 months ago

Ooooooh I love it!!! I’m so excited to see how this turns out!! (and well played on the aprils fools – I was real worried about your deposit for a moment there :’)) I’d personally probably go for the dark blue? I think it would give your off-white pipes a nice depth and classiness! (or maybe even the pink if it looks better in real life cause I usually love the softness of off-white and pink but in the mock up it seems to bring out the reddish tones in your floor a lot? which would personally not be my favourite)

Leigh H
6 months ago

Fab idea!!!! All white please!!! The color tile is really pretty but I think for this design they will be too distracting. Can’t wait.

Siel
6 months ago

I’m a fan of the dark tile/white mantel combo. Fits perfect with your elder, old Europe inspired apartment imo!

I also don’t really mind if pitched projects never get realised. The design and brainstorm phases are the most fun! Of course it’s even more fun tot see the result, but design proces is already satisfying. 🙂

Brigitte
6 months ago

Off white gets my vote. It looks like the fireplace is in a dark corner and you need a light color to brighten up that corner. Good luck! Looking forward to seeing how it turns out🙂

6 months ago

The plan looks cool. But what are you going to put on top of the mantle to cap off the PVC? It seems like it will be hard to get a flat surface with so many cut pipes. I have visions of tiny things falling to the bottom of your mantle until you move. Or have you accounted for that?

Jackie
6 months ago

Haha! I love the April Fool’s angle. Also, my late dad used to call my children….”Bungo”! Can you believe it?
Can’t wait to see the result of your makeover. Say hi to your dad!

Lane
6 months ago

Lol you got me. Whatever you plan, I’m curious how it turns out. I have a fireplace that needs a new tile on the exterior and a lot of wheather proofing as it”s so drafty. I’m not looking forward to this project.

Cris S.
6 months ago
Reply to  Lane

In our old house the fireplace needed internal repair that we just weren’t going to do as I didn’t want the hassle of a wood fire, the repair expense, and the cleaning soot off the walls (which we’d had to do when we moved it). But boy, that thing would whistle when the wind blew and cold air would radiate off of it in winter. I ended up shoving a bunch of foam in there to block the vents and then put a velvet wrapped canvas picture frame in front of the ugly fireguard (had sliding glass doors and was attached to the brick fireplace surround – the canvas fit right over it).

I painted the ugly brick white and the velvet was a soft gray and it worked for us. I don’t know how our renters feel about it, but if they wanted to invest in some changes I’d be up for the discussion (was feeling – as a landlord, which I never thought I’d be – a bit concerned by your intro paragraph :-).

Emily
6 months ago

Pink! There are so many shades, I’m sure you can find something that will look great! True story: when we moved into our house 3 years ago (1911 American four-square), it had been fully renovated by a previous owner (it had previously been a boarding house so it was a little rough …). Apparently the tile surround as hearth tile were in really bad shape so they had to be replaced, and they replaced it with slabs of pink/mauve granite. When we moved in we HATED it, but we’ve strangely grown to love it. It’s a little pop of cheerful color, and because of the variations in tone it seems to work with everything we put next to it. It almost functions as a neutral. All this to say – go for it!

LouAnn
6 months ago
Reply to  Emily

What you describe would make for an interesting post — the features of your home that you thought you hated but in time grew to love.

Mine would be the metal cabinets original to my house that I initially hated but now love for their sturdiness, clean lines, and the fact that I can paint them any color (and I have!) and they always look great.

emily jane
6 months ago
Reply to  LouAnn

I 2nd this post idea! I am so intrigued by the phenomenon of falling for the very detail/feature that initially was at the top of the ‘absolutely MUST change’ list (I think it has something to do with the challenge inherent in a conflict/resolution dynamic..? For instance: I have a paint color in my home that is NOT what I was aiming for 22 hours a day BUT, that resolution of tension when it transforms into the color I was reaching for is something I look forward to all day long : )

regarding the April Fools prank: Somehow it justified my shock upon seeing the byline of the post -as though I DO know Jess as well as I thought! ; )

Rusty
6 months ago
Reply to  emily jane

I didn’t ‘hate’, but didn’t really like the dark stained timber in my old girl when I first moved in and almost painted it (formal rooms’ plate rails, skirtimg boards, doors, door frames) white.
I’m soooo glad I didn’t! It’s original and elegant and I see myself as the guardian if this home, so the nearly 100 year old keeps her dark tudor-like trims!😊

Anja
6 months ago

Personally I like the mauve color with the white mantle the most. This basic color seemes to elevate everything around it and it looks so elegant. But I understand the concern in the comments, that there will be some shadows or over all a darker corner and you want to bright it up. Either way, I’m looking forward to your own solutions 😀

Cheryl
6 months ago

Love the first idea with the wood and tile. I was wondering what peel and stick tile would look like all over the existing tile plus a very simple, modern mantle. It is a sad and curious looking fireplace as is, as an owner I’d definitely support the change.
It would be interesting to ask for permission from your landlord and create something really dramatic…on your landlord’s dime. 😊

6 months ago

I vote blue!!!

Christina
6 months ago
Reply to  Cf Betcher

Same! Though I also like the textural play of the ivory/off-white. Something about the pink looks bad to me and I normally like pink.

Charell
6 months ago

I get that it isn’t for everyone, but I like the fireplace as it is now (though maybe it’s worse in person?) Interested to see if the pvc works in a non-flat install like this. Good luck!

6 months ago

Blue is the way to go. I’m anxious to see this come to life. How are you treating the edge of the tile and backerboard on the hearth?

another Jess
6 months ago

I would personally go for all white since the surround is such a focal point. Plus, it lets you play around with color via accessories.

But if you want to bring color in, what about white/ivory inside the fireplace and pink or blue as the hearth? That way you still get the lovely colors, without the elements competing so much?

Kristin
6 months ago
Reply to  another Jess

Also, from a landlord perspective, this way would be much easier for future renters to change. Anyone can repaint PVC pipes pretty easily, but you’re stuck with the tile color, usually.

Ann
6 months ago

I’m in love with that sculptured lounge chair in the last photo.

okay, eek! fun!
1. that tile is so depressing to me. i’m with you on that. energy suck.
2. i love the inspo round up. i wish the pictures were bigger. i can tell i would stare at them for a while. love that look. and i miss your entryway bench. just had to throw that in there because that will always be one of my favorite MOTO things.
3. the tube thing looks cool. can’t wait to see it in real life. i say pink tile because i’m a pink all day kinda gal.
4. i didn’t even think of etsy for looking for a faux fireplace surround. oooooohhhhhh!

Cris S.
6 months ago

I’m in Chicago and fireplace surrounds and mantels in both wood and marble regularly show up on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist so you might monitor those also.

Jessvii
6 months ago

I’m on board with the DIY arched fireplace cover. That being said, the existing fireplace looks sad in both the pre- and post-Christmas photos because it has been decorated both times with black, beige, and gray. If it had some colorful accessories, e.g. red, then I don’t think it would look bad at all.

Dena
6 months ago

My daughter started pranking us at 6 this morning so I knew this was an April Fools beginning but I thought oh boy some people aren’t going to remember and are going to be upset!

I love love love what you want to do! I want to do that same design to my staircase and little reading nook. I found a product called Tandour wood panels that I am going to use. Your PVC idea sounds great. Can’t wait to see the final reveal!

Dena
6 months ago
Reply to  Jess Bunge

Maybe he is waiting for the day when you get him back with a good one!
Have you looked into tandour panels as an option? Haven’t looked at the prices- kinda don’t want too!!

Molly
6 months ago

This is awesome and I totally fell for the April fool’s joke! Personally I love the pink and it feel like it would look most original to an LA home. The overall shape reminds me of some of the DTLA deco buildings. I’m also reminded of the beautiful wood stove tile surround (mathematical set backs nightmare) we did at our last house that was completed 1 month before we unexpectedly had to move. 🙁

Can’t wait to see your project come to life!

Azure
6 months ago

I love it! And good April fools! I had all the worried/anxious/“oh no what if her land lord reads this” feelings that this holiday (?) is supposed to elicit 🙂

I love the surround! As for the tile, my gut tells me the lighter colors will look cooler in person, but in the photoshop I like the dark better, maybe bc it recedes more than the ivory and pink. Do you think you could maybe add a drop shadow in the other two to make them look less weird and get a better feel for the final look?

Looking forward to the surprise reveal!!

Alice
6 months ago

I thought I was immune to April Fool’s stuff on the ‘net but you got me!

Alice
6 months ago
Reply to  Alice

Also, I have to say, I love the original fireplace. It’s gorgeous. I would put plants around and on it so the green would give it life. I would rather see that than any of the surround ideas. But since it’s not a permanent change, why not do what makes you happy.

Sheila
6 months ago

I like the contrast of a deeper toned tile for inside the fireplace. A brownish/taupe-y/gray, the color of a shadow, would be my first pick but any of those you’ve mentioned would be great, too.
Loved the April Fool’s, too!

Amy
6 months ago

Have you ever tried to remove some of the faux finish? It might look radically different once you get the dirty-looking haze off of there, and then you’d have real tile instead of plastic pipe to look at. Good luck!

Michelle
6 months ago

I could feel my heart rate jump anxiously when I read the title! haha. Well played. I loved the blue tiles!

Roberta Davis
6 months ago

I like the Merrythought and Fall for DIY options. For the PVC piping, I would just make the whole thing pvc, and not use the tile. It doesn’t have to look like a fireplace, does it? Because there will never be a fire in there. It could be a cabinet or bookcase. Or a niche for a sculpture. Have fun!

Char
6 months ago

Thank you for again defining MOTO; I am old and need to be reminded of things several times. sigh and smile

Karen M
6 months ago

RE: redo of fireplace…nothing will say 2021 like fluting. Seems that every design blogger is using this trick for walls, furniture treatment or accent. PVC with tile? This design idea would be more integrated using thick wooden dowels, kept either naturally light, stained or painted. It is a cleaner look than the current surround, but I would prefer the original as it has classic architectural interest. Taking the tone down to a bronzed black with a contrasting interior tile (pink?) makes it more contemporary.

Alexandra Rose
6 months ago
Reply to  Karen M

I was thinking that wooden dowels would be better as well. It’s just a matter of time before she moves and the surround is thrown away. Plastic is forever. Wood dowels are better looking and can be composted or reused after.

Alexandra Rose
6 months ago
Reply to  Jess Bunge

This is a new paradigm to consider as we are all so used to just doing what we want (myself included) but, if it is too expensive to create responsibly…maybe come up with a different design? I get that this is fairly small project but environmental impact should be considered with any project. If not this one, hopefully the next. Good luck whatever you choose to do. I’m sure it will look cool!

Donna
6 months ago

Your sourcing of inspiration photos is always sublime. I would buy a coffee table book if you ever wanted to publish one!

Suzanne
6 months ago

A faux cover for the fireplace is great way to get what you want without creating a problem with the owner of the apartment. With your inspiration photos showing old painted fireplace surrounds, I thought you were going to share something your dad built with molding and perhaps some vintage corbels. While I’d love to see the incorporation of vintage architectural finds, your design is fun. I like the darker inside to the fireplace in the mock-up, but in real life it might look different with shadows as do many others have mentioned. The tile also looks shiny to me, and I think I’d prefer something matte and solid surface next to the piping. I wonder if you could find some stone remnants off Craigslist to put inside. I’m looking forward to seeing the final results of the surround and the MOTO. The color scheme sounds beautiful, and I love the inspiration photos and the space you’re working with.

Suzanne
6 months ago
Reply to  Jess Bunge

Jess, such a great point that being vintage and trying to look vintage are not the same. I also think that tiles will look different when recessed into the fireplace, and the reflection will be nice. The 2D mock-up doesn’t quite capture the dimension. Good luck maintaining steam on the diy. Can’t wait to see the result.

aforss
6 months ago

Although the tile color is unfortunate, I think the shape of the existing fireplace is charming and suits the apartment’s other architectural details much better than the PVC pipe-based design. Have you tried asking your landlord for permission to paint or reglaze the tile? I think it would look great in a matte white, perhaps leaving the interior tiles (which look like a different finish, no?) alone.

Rusty
6 months ago

Oh my, I was sucked in by the April Fools’ joke!!! Ya got me! And, I thought the fireplace would NOT be it.

The piping, dowel, faux art deco thing really isn’t my thing at all and I’m seeing it everywhere….”trend” alert? I’m concerned it might be a hot-second-trend, but hey…you can easily undo it, I guess…like Albie does with her changes if she gets tired of them or moves?

Anyhoo, from the colours you’ve shown, I like the pink the most, because it gives some ‘life’ to that area. I think pink sort of does that to a space, especially a darkish space.

If it were me, I’d probably ask the owner if I could paint the tiles aqua and then display all.the.gorgeous.vessels on the mantle?! LOL… too bold?! Hahaha 😹

Tricia
6 months ago

Can’t wait to see this! It looks like one of those DIYs that *seems* doable, but if I tried it would surely be a bunch of uneven PVC pipes hot glued together that looks like a 3rd grade art project inspired by an abstraction on plumbing. But I have ALL the faith in you and your dad – all your DIYs have been incredible thus far!

Mitten
6 months ago

It’s pretty unclear what the actual design is. Half rounds of PVC pipe? I really like it the way it is!

Is ‘love you, mean it’ an American thing? I’m not sure I’ve ever read a phrase that sounds as inauthentic.

Elle
6 months ago
Reply to  Mitten

it must be – makes me cringe every time. :-/

Jenna
6 months ago

I agree that your current fireplace could be more cheery, but have to side with those commenters that the PVC pipe option might not be your best choice. It’s definitely a current trend, but might a more classic style be a better choice? I believe that architectural elements should flow with the design of the building, and that trendier elements should come into play through furniture, art, etc. (i.e., not permanent elements.)

Sue
6 months ago
Reply to  Jenna

Well a classic fireplace style might be a better choice for you, but not for Jess. And call me crazy but I think Jess gets the final say here.

Jenna
6 months ago
Reply to  Sue

Actually, the landlord gets the final say. But of course, Jess should decorate in anyway that makes her happy and feel like it’s hers.

Eliot
6 months ago

I love this post. It would have been such a great resource during a time when I too was trying to find a way to make a fake fireplace in my own Brooklyn apartment (I went with an electric fireplace, which looked great, but was almost never used–too much of an energy suck).

My vote is for the blue tile! If it were more permanent, maybe the ivory would be a better choice, but the DIY/temporary nature of this project is practically begging for something a little bolder.

Finally, I adore your family nickname, but now I’m curious about how you pronounce your last name. I had assumed it was BUN-jee, but Bungo makes me think otherwise.

Alexandra Rose
6 months ago

I love your idea to create a temporary surround, something to experiment and have fun with. I’m not crazy about using lots of plastic, a forever material, for a temporary fix, though. I’ve seen these done and it does look cool but I always appreciate you guys being thoughtful regarding responsible design. Maybe wooden dowels would be a good alternate material?

Rusty
6 months ago
Reply to  Alexandra Rose

🌏

Alexandra Rose
6 months ago
Reply to  Jess Bunge

Great! I wonder if you could get aluminum (endlessly recyclable) ducts and cut them in half? Us designers need to step up our game when it comes to considering the environmental impact of our designs. No time to waste on that really!
Also, for the top, I would just get a 1/2″ plywood sheet to cap it off. I would round the corners to match your dowel radius and have a minimal overhang- maybe 1/4-1/2″. Reverse chamfer the edge for extra credit.
Also, I prefer the white tile. Seems like it would offer unlimited styling possibilities. Good luck!

Mary Robideaux
6 months ago

There are people who would say no to the whole house if it had a fireplace like your original.

Elaine
6 months ago

Your poor aul’ fireplace is kinda unfortunate isn’t it! And doubly so because of the pattern overkill between the fireplace tile/herringbone pattern in the hearth and the mismatched yellow/red tones. Have you considered painting the fireplace in a flat white tile paint, and then either plastering over the hearth or using something like thin plasterboard/mdf to create an even surface over the herringbone pattern? It might be an easier, less expensive fix? Just a thought…and looking forward to whatever solution you come up with, no doubt it will be great!

Katie
6 months ago

From a distance that fireplace looks pretty historic and authentic to me. I think that kind of tile was fairly popular, though perhaps it’s newer tile mimicking that style and really is an ahistoric mess up close. That being said, a non-permanent cover is a great, rental-friendly idea! I agree with other comments below about considering wooden dowels over PVC pipe. Less plastic use and I think the dowels will look better. There was an Instagrammer who used dowels to create a similar base for a dining room table recently and it was very cool.

The Kitten Abides
6 months ago

No offense, but the pvc pipe idea gives me Delia’s Decor from Beetlejuice vibes (just less gray). But, as I say, “To each, their peach!” If it makes YOU happy . . . as indeed, the current drabness is quite depressing to look at.

Karen
6 months ago

Blue tile!

Eve
6 months ago

Hi Jess! I am SO SO SO happy that you are covering that eyesore (I can say that now, right?)!!!! I HATE brown tile and those two together? YUCK! I love the modern tubular style you are going with but I def am voting for color tile inside! My first choice is that blue-sweet! I immediately before I saw those two choices thought of dusty pink (the kind that looks good with rust color) inside, but def NOT that pink (although you said it looks diff in photoshop, etc). But am very glad you are doing this! YAY!! xo

anon
6 months ago

I wonder if the fireplace (as-is) is depressing and cheerless because the rest of the wall color, floor color, etc. is depressing and cheerless? Can you paint the wall? Add a rug? create a new colorful hearth out of new tiles without grouting? Add plants, vases, etc? to make the current fireplace surround work?

Go for the temporary/removable surround it it makes you happy! Of course.

The PVC tubes/tubular esthetic screams 1980s to me and therefore does not work for me. but if it makes you happy then go for it.

It it were a permanent installation then I would be on team nope nope nope.

Susan
6 months ago

Sorry to say, but I do not think that your proposed fireplace cover works with the architecture of the room or your apartment. The architecture of your room is beautiful and classic Edwardian. But it also is confusing – you see a fireplace and you think it is the focal point and it has to be changed to make it a more important focal point. But I think the real focal point is the round wall of windows – I would love to see you design to emphasize that feature – a round table that works as a desk and/or dinner table? A great chandelier over it. Window seats or a curved sofa wrapped around the curve and under the windows, An invisible line that respects the rest of the “circle” implied by the curved wall even where it intrudes into your fireplace area…. You have a unique focal point with the curved wall and I am team “take advantage of the curve” all the way. For this to really work, I think you should not treat the fireplace as a focal point. The way it is now, it recedes from my eye the very second that I see the… Read more »

Susan
6 months ago
Reply to  Jess Bunge

There is “tension,” and then there is all out war. I don’t see how this fireplace cover can ever be “dramatically quiet,” because it’s era (1980s), its style (postmodernism), and its scale all are overwhelming. Why not focus of the office/dining area first and make it your star. Then see if the fireplace needs to be a competing star?

6 months ago

I agree with most of the comments. I like the white emphasizing the shapes. The color tile is a distraction. Can’t wait to see it!! Good luck!

Katie
6 months ago

I usually love historic architectural features, but agree that this one saps the energy from the room. In the mockups, I’m first drawn to the blue for the depth it adds, but I think I also like the contrast with the PVC. The white seems too close in color and scale in the mockup, though perhaps the dimensionality of the pipes would be more apparent in real life. I wonder if a smaller-scale tile would provide more contrast with scales of patterns between the pipes’ stripes and the tiles’ grid. Excited to see where you take this!

Lea
6 months ago

Oooohhh I’m so excited to see! I am thinking of adding a fireplace to our dining room.

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