DIY Fireplace Makeover

My husband and I decided to redo the fireplace when we were putting in our new floors. This was our first tile project and I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out!

Tile: The first step was to remove the hearth and surrounding beige tile. My husband used a sawzall to do this and was pretty proud of himself when the hearth came out in one piece. (Don’t mind the huge red wine stain on the carpet – I knocked over a full glass a couple of days before this photo was taken and decided to just leave it there since we were tearing out the carpet anyway)

One easy thing we did once Tommy took off the old tile was clean the fireplace glass! I just used windex. It’s crazy how much better this alone makes it look.

Next it was time to cut, measure and nail on the cement board. Tommy found the best way to cut cement board is to score it, then snap it. He used a diamond bit to drill through and then installed with flat head nails so the tile could go over smoothly. After the cement board was up, we measured and created a template of the fireplace using tape on the floor so we would know exactly where to cut each piece.

Then it was time to cut the tile! We used a large wet saw rented from a nearby rental equipment store (also took a break for a bomb lunch).

I used a lot of adhesive to put the tile on (probably too much but again, first time doing this). The tape around the fireplace helped ensure no glue got on and made for an easy clean up.

After a couple days, we applied a grout sealer/cleaner, let it dry then started grouting (applying the sealer before helped ensure the grout didn’t stick to the tile and makes it easier to clean off after). We made sure to use unsanded grout, since the lines are narrow and we didn’t want to scratch the tile.

Then after it dried for about 20 minutes, we cleaned it off and used the same sealer from before to seal the grout lines. Next it was time to tackle the hearth and fireplace surroundings.

Materials Used to Tile:

Hearth: We decided to do a large marble slab to match the herringbone tile for the fireplace hearth. We designed and cut the template ourselves to save money and had this custom piece made for our fireplace. We splurged on real marble but we love how it came out! Hearth Cost: $250

Materials: My husband built and painted the mantel surroundings using scrap trim pieces + paint we had on hand. We removed our top corner insert, gave it a fresh coat of paint and secured it back on.

Total cost for DIY Fireplace Makeover: $481

5 thoughts on “DIY Fireplace Makeover

  1. […] The last time my husband and I updated our fireplace was last year when we were living in our townhome. We gave that fireplace a facelift with some fresh tile, paint and a new marble hearth. We were only able to enjoy it for a couple of months before renting to our tenants but I still love the way it came out! You can read about that DIY Project Here. […]

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