Barn Beam Inspired Fireplace

THIS, this is my biggest project to date, and my first project to kick off 2017!! I have been so excited to finish this, I’ve worked tirelessly (but enjoyed every minute) to complete the project and share the results. I received a 12″ Sliding Compound Ryobi Miter Saw for Christmas and couldn’t wait to fire it up!

I’ve had old barn beams sitting at the shop waiting for the perfect place to use them. The ones I used on the wall are about 4 1/2″x 5″ roughly and the big monster beam I used on the mantel is a rough 6×6 and heavy but so, so beautiful!! I knew I’d be using these in my home and when it came time for a new fireplace, I was inspired by some of these mantels on Pinterest.

Below is not such a great before photo but I was so excited to start I forgot to get a good one.IMG_3914.JPG

Boring and blah, and nothing to brag about. That fireplace you see in this photo, well… it quit on us about 6 months ago and ever since I have been dreaming and picturing how I would replace it. I have been busy with orders and Christmas presents so I made myself hold off on starting a project for myself.

Christmas Day we delivered the last of the Christmas presents I made for family and friends, and before the sawdust settled on my tools, I was at it again ready to take on this project. This is what I had pictured in my head: image2.PNG

I know what you’re thinking, “wow, a builder AND an artist!!”… not. Ok, maybe my drawing wouldn’t impress anyone but just imagine the above and multiply it by about 2000% and that’s the dream fireplace I pictured in my head…ALL day, EVERY day. I couldn’t wait to start, and since my husband was working for the next few days, it was a perfect time for me to tackle it. I didn’t have exact plans made to build this but I had some measurements and decided to start with the plank wall.

Pretty straight forward, I repositioned where I wanted our TV mount (higher and more centered – note, mount your TV higher on the wall & your room will look slightly bigger…but don’t go crazy). I made sure to remove any trim and baseboard on the wall. Then I stained the edges of all the boards (1×6 pine) and stained some boards in full so that after I painted them white, I could distress them to reveal the darker stain. Then I used an air nailer to attach them to the wall, using a few nickels to leave a slight gap between each board.

Then, I took a deep breath, time to start the frame of the fireplace. I used 2×4 and started with the base and built the same piece to use for the top. (The green tape was just used to remind me where the center of the wall was and how deep the unit would be)


Then, I connected the top piece and the bottom piece with a few supports (2×4 again)


I added a few more of these supports… and built a hearth the same way I built the base (I ended up changed the hearth in the below photo to be the same width as the unit). Then I used 1×12 pine to cover the top, sides and top of the hearth.


Now, time to tackle the barn beams that I wanted to use to frame the plank wall, I seriously contemplated leaving this part out – out of my comfort zone! Then I watched about 10 youtube videos on how to install a barn beam mantel and drove to Home Hardware to get supplies and I was able to get both installed successfully !! yay! I added side shelves as you can see in the next photo. (Framed with 2×4, tongue and groove pine added to the wall as a back for the open shelves and 1×12 used as sides/shelves)


Next with the help of my husband, we installed the fireplace, added tongue and groove pine to the front and added trim.


Finally, I had these awesome 15″ wide boards that a coworker gave me that were from a 100+ year old house! I decided to use them for the tops of the side shelves and the top of the hearth. After brushing on one stroke of Varathane, the board breathed new life but still had lots of the original character! 444

I built some small shelves inspired by these plans on Ana White’s blog – they are super easy and perfect for displaying photos and small décor pieces.

Finally, a few days later, I had a finished product to stare at for years to come! Somehow, it even made the room seem bigger ! I love having my coffee in here 🙂






12 thoughts on “Barn Beam Inspired Fireplace

  1. Looks awesome, great job really like the balance on each side, anchors the eye!! I need to see this in person, love the mug 😉 Gilmore on repeat.


  2. Wow, this turned out just beautiful. I have always wanted a fireplace but we don’t have one in our house, your new non-gas fireplace looks awesome in that set up! Very cozy (jealous)


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