Browsing Tag


    Lauren’s Fireplace Progress

    January 9, 2018

    Hi, friends! It’s been awhile since I shared some before and after photos of mine and Andrew’s city fixer upper, so I thought I would give a quick progress update on our current fireplace project. This one has been ongoing for a few months now and by no means is it perfect or close to being done. Some days, this project is daunting as heck, and other days we feel like we can do this – no problem! It’s a constant battle of those all-too-real home ownership emotions. 🙂

    To date, we’ve updated the tile and added bookshelves that will eventually be “fake” built-ins around the fireplace. Just these few, inexpensive changes alone have changed the way the entire living room looks! Everything is so much brighter and it feels like a more finished home to me. Some people have already asked me if we did the tile replacement ourselves, and the answer is….sort of. We wanted to, but realized we don’t have the necessary skill to do it right – ha! So, we ended up removing the existing tile (Andrew did this over the course of a week…it was pretty hard to get off), and then hired someone to install the new tile that we had previously picked out from Tile Outlet Chicago. I really wanted to go with a diagonal pattern for the floor, but it was going to cost more money to lay it, so we decided against it (boo). It still turned out really nice and we’re both happy with it! Keep reading below to see what else is on our to-do list, before we can officially check this project off our list.



    Fireplace To-Dos

    We still have a few major items to complete that will make the fireplace look 100% finished.

    • Spray paint the black grate – yes, you can do this! They make special spray paint for fireplaces that are heat resistant. Spray painting it black again will get rid of all of the tile/grout imperfections, and make it look more new.
    • Complete our IKEA hack built-ins – this is the part we’re both worried about. Sigh. If we can somehow pull this off, it’s going to look SO amazing. The goal is to make these out-of-the-box bookshelves look like they were already a part of the condo. Plus, they give us a little bit more storage, which we desperately need. If you noticed, I didn’t install the white handles on the bottom shelves that they came with – they were not my style. I’m currently on the hunt for some metal black ones to replace them with.
    • Paint the wall behind the TV – Andrew thinks I’m crazy when I talk about doing this. He thinks the current wall color is fine, but in my opinion, if we make that wall white, the fireplace and bookshelves will feel more like one cohesive unit and tie it all together. Thoughts on this one?
    • Decorate – when these 3 MAJOR sub-projects are complete, it will be time to decorate!! Yay! I already have some ideas in mind.

    I’ll check back in with ya’ll in about a month or two…hopefully with good news. 🙂


    Billy Bookcases (with extender) paired with the Brimnes Cabinets from Ikea


    If you’re looking for another home transformation story, check out my kitchen here.

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