….it’s a built-in

Happy (belated) long weekend y’all!  I hope everyone made the most of that gorgeous weather we had this May 24, whether you were renovating (as we were) working in your garden, or just plain relaxing.

Our family room deadline is only two weeks away and we are making pretty good progress in that space. All of the hardwood flooring is in and most of the painting (not including the built-ins) is finished.

This past week we went out to a little ‘mom and pop’ lumber supplier and picked out our mantel walnut. Philmore Enterprises does not have a website, and I unfortunately did not bring my camera with me that day, but the owner is fantastic and obviously knows his stuff.   It was a great place to get some info and a great piece of lumber.

We eventually decided on some walnut veneered plywood for the top and bottom of the mantel and picked a solid piece of walnut for the face.  Choosing a wood veneered plywood is a way to keep costs down, especially when you are looking for that particular grain or color but can’t afford a solid slab of, in our case, walnut.

covering up that brick…..

Here is a shot of the mantel completed and in place.  All it needs is a finish sanding and a coat or two of  Varathane Premium Clear Finish in satin.  This time I am trying out the new gel formula, so we will see how that goes.  The walnut has a nice natural color and interesting grain, which is what I was hoping for as it will be the focal point of this built-in.

Here is the conceptual drawing that we have agreed upon for the built-in unit.  Clean and simple.  I didn’t want anything fancy or decorative in the woodwork and trim.  The brick on the lower part of the existing fireplace will remain for now,  as will the gas insert.  This room does have a more extensive plan which includes refacing the lower brick (possibly with ledge stone) and a new gas insert, but this won’t happen for a few years yet.  In the meantime the exposed brick will get painted out, but the debate on color is ongoing…..

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