DIY

DIY Concrete Fireplace For Less than $100!

February 21, 2014

Want to give your outdated fireplace a makeover? This budget-friendly DIY concrete fireplace update is simple and beautiful. You won't believe the before and after!

concrete fireplace

 

 

Hello there!  I am finally ready to share with you the much anticipated DIY concrete fireplace tutorial.  By way of background, in case you have not already read about it in the post about our family room renovation, let me explain the reason behind this transformation.  We felt like the stone fireplace was a very “traditional” look that felt out of place to us in our very contemporary home.  We really wanted a clean, simple, contemporary look for the fireplace.

I was obsessed with concrete fireplaces and I was willing to hire the job out.  But, professionals told us it either could not be done or it would cost us $2,000 to $3,000 and that they “thought” it would work.  Ummmm, no thanks.  Long story short, I researched a ton and found a phenomenal concrete product called Ardex Feather Finish that I thought would enable us to get exactly the look we wanted for a very small price tag.

This fireplace has received lots of attention since being pictured in my post on our family room renovation.  I was thrilled when my family room was featured on Apartment Therapy.  While most of the feedback was positive, there were some people who were APPALLED that we removed the stone from our fireplace.  I was not surprised.  In fact, my family room reveal post noted at the outset that the style would not be for everyone.

Let me just state for the record that I am totally okay with people disagreeing with our choice to remove the stone from our fireplace (though you should know that it had been badly sealed and was shiny and discolored).  And I totally get that not everyone loves the look of concrete.  It's okay, people!  I don't expect everyone to love every single choice I make.  If everyone had the same taste, life would be boring.  But, for those of you that L.O.V.E. our DIY concrete fireplace as much as I do, please read on to learn about how we did it!

Before I get into the nitty gritty, let me add a HUGE disclaimer.  This worked FOR US.  We had our chimney inspected and spoke with a contractor and were confident that the stone on our fireplace was merely a facade that could be removed.  In other words, we knew our chimney would not fall down if we removed the stone.  If you are not absolutely sure about what you are dealing with, seek professional advice!  Our tutorial also depends on the presence of brick below your stone facade.  With that said, let's get on with it…

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Materials and Tools Needed for DIY Concrete Fireplace

Steps to Create a DIY Concrete Fireplace

1) If you have an ugly fireplace insert like we did, remove it first.  If you have a mantel, remove that also.

diy concrete fireplace2) Demolish the stone facade.  We used a demolition hammer to do this and I would HIGHLY recommend it.  Joe started with just a chisel and hammer and that got old fast. Do yourself a favor and use a demolition hammer from the start.  You should be left with brick underneath your facade.  It looked better to us already after getting the stone off! By the way, let me give a huge shout out to my awesome step-dad, Roger, for helping us out with the demolition!  You can see him helping out Joe below.

fire place remodel

Note that we created a channel in the mortar joints of the brick to run our electrical so that we could have a hidden outlet behind our TV.

fireplace makeover

3) Use an ELECTRIC drill with an appropriate masonry bit and masonry screws to attach your cement board to the brick.  It must be an electric drill.  A battery operated drill just does not have enough power to do this job.

fireplace makeover4) Tape the seams with mesh tape.

5) Now you are ready for the fun part!  Mix up the concrete in your large bucket by adding water to the Ardex Feather Finish dry mix.  Add water and continue to stir until you get to a thin pancake batter consistency.  The right consistency is KEY!  Next, allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes, then mix it up again.  This process helps the product remain workable for a longer period of time. This is what it will look like.

wet concrete6) Trowel the mixture into your drywall tray and start applying the mixture to the concrete board using your drywall knife.  I recommend going over the taped seams first. Then work on covering the rest of the surfaces.  Use long, even strokes to apply a THIN layer of the concrete mixture.  We used our fingers to put it on the edges.  Sorry I don't have any steps of this step–we completed the project pre-blog, so I did not bother taking photos of this step.  If you want to check out a tutorial about using this product on a different surface that has some photos of this step, check out my DIY concrete vanity post.  I will say it was easier to apply than I expected and we had ZERO experience with this sort of thing.  If you have ever worked with plaster or drywall mud, you will be on step ahead of us!

7) This is how our DIY concrete fireplace looked after the first coat.  It was still drying in this photo.  You can see that the cement board seams were still visible.  Don't worry, as you apply additional coats, everything will be covered!

concrete fireplace

See how the seams disappear after a couple more coats?

concrete fireplace

We did sand some between each coat, but honestly, I wish we hadn't.  It made a huge mess and in the end, I don't think it was necessary because LOVE the interesting look of hand troweled concrete, so I did not want to sand out all of the trowel marks.  If you have any high spots, you may want to sand those down, but otherwise, I would allow each coat to dry, then apply another coat until you are happy with the finish.  We applied either 4 or 5 coats.  I lost count.  After the final coat, we loved the look of it so much and it was so smooth to the touch without sanding, that again, we did not sand.  We also elected not to apply a sealer, since I don't think there is any significant danger of spelling red wine on our fireplace. But if you want to add a bit of sheen to the finish, you can read about the sealer that I recommend in this post.

That's it!  For less than $100, we totally transformed our fireplace and created a DIY concrete fireplace.  And to think some of the pros we consulted couldn't even figure this one out.  HA!  We love, love, love the clean, simple lines of our fireplace now.  And we are both lovers of all things concrete (countertops, floors, etc.) so we were thrilled to be able to use one of our favorite finishes on our fireplace.
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You can read all about how we made that awesome DIY metal, sliding barn door fireplace screen here.

concrete fireplace makeover

concrete fireplace

concrete fireplace

living room

One of my favorite views to compare is the view from our twin girls' playroom into our family room BEFORE:

living room before

And AFTER.  We've come a long way, baby!

living room

What do you think of our DIY concrete fireplace?  Even if it's not your personal style, can you believe that we managed this dramatic transformation for less than $100?!

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  1. Dyanko says:

    Great work, and definitely very insightful for people who want to renovate their old-fashioned fireplaces. I have just one question, which I could not understand from the photos. Do you still have some kind of hidden fireplace insert or other cover? And if not, is it still safe to have real fire without it?

  2. I have been looking to do something like this, do you know if you can stain it afterwards and apply a semi-gloss sealant?

    • FYI – I’m starting with painted bricks rather than a rock veneer. Do I have to put up concrete board?

    • Tasha says:

      I prefer the grey look of the plain concrete, so I have never tried changing the color. I have heard that some people have stained and used powdered concrete dye, but I can’t speak to it! THanks!

  3. Daniel says:

    Hi, the result looks beautiful! My question; can you still make a fire in your fireplace after the modification???

  4. […] 5) After the holes were marked, we pre-drilled holes following the instructions for the Tapcon screws using a hammer drill.  We used Tapcon screws appropriate for our fireplace, which is brick covered with cement board and a thin cement overlay.  You can read more about our DIY concrete fireplace here. […]

  5. Mica E says:

    I really love your new fireplace. It looks amazing. We found our new fireplace! I also love your curtains. They would look perfect in my living room. Where did you purchase them?

    • Tasha says:

      They are West Elm’s Scribble curtains. I really love them too!!! Thanks for reading and good luck with your fireplace!

  6. Anya says:

    Wow! This is amazing. my husband and I have been looking for an inexpensive way to do our fireplace with concrete. We really like the wood stamped concrete tile but it’s too pricey. Do you know if this technique would accept a wood look stamp? Or can you speculate on it after working with it?

    • Tasha says:

      Each layer is so thin I am not sure it would ever be thick enough to take on a pattern. BUT, that being said you should try it on some scrap wood! Let me know if it works!

  7. […] DIY Concrete Fireplace {for less than $100} […]

  8. Jennifer H says:

    This is fantastic! I have an electric fire place. The surround is green ceramic tile. I’m wanting to cover the tile with Ardex cement. Do you think I could go over the tile?

    • Tasha says:

      I haven’t personally done it on tile, but it can be done if the tile and grout are in good shape and aren’t cracked, chipping, etc. It would probably take more coats to get full coverage, but it should work!

  9. Kerry says:

    You all have done a beautiful job on this. Looks like a professional installation.
    Bravo.

  10. […] laminate flooring (you can read all about why we chose laminate flooring for our home here), and completely transforming the fireplace with concrete for around $100, below is how it has looked for nearly 3 […]

  11. Don ciesielski says:

    Great project. There are many options to Ardex to cut cost even more. One example is something called Canvas TL mIcrotopping I found at Contractor Source(online store)
    A 30 lb bag was $30. Plenty.

  12. Wow – looks great and very modern – excellent work. – I did our with just a bag of sand and cement and it ended up having a character type finish – was over the dark 1970’s brown brick fireplace and hearth – where it was not quite 100% even – then painted it white – but we were going for a country/french provincial look and then we poured the concrete hearth and went to a dark blue/grey colour which looks good against our light cypress pine flooring.

  13. […] And along those same lines, Tasha at Designer Trapped In A Lawyer’s Body created this DIY Concrete Fireplace for $100 that turned out so great, too. Maybe that post will get Jess’ creative gears turning […]

  14. Iris S. says:

    Awesome DIY! I wish I were brave enough to attempt this on one of our dated fireplaces.

  15. […] fireplace! paint brick gigantic river rock fireplace enormous poured concrete raised hearth. DIY Concrete Fireplace {for less than $100} | Designer TrappedStove painted concrete floor danger? | hearth., Stove painted concrete hearth protection extend! […]

  16. […] is contemporary. We have been embracing the contemporary architecture since we moved in, including totally modernizing our fireplace with a sleek concrete finish.  To get the clean look we wanted, it meant we had to sacrifice a mantel.  That left us with the […]

  17. Michelle Mijal says:

    Love this! We are doing this now, will make sure I send all the pics when we are finished! Can you please tell me where I can find
    Ardex SD-M?

    We found feather finish at hardware and there are no suppliers in MI and I am shocked to not be able to find on Amazon?!? If you a direct link for the SD-M (that we can tint) please post it.
    Thanks so much :-))
    Michelle

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Michelle! I don’t know of anywhere online you can purchase the Ardex SD-M–sorry! I would recommend calling Ardex and asking if you can purchase it directly from them or a retailer that can ship it to you. Good luck!

  18. Jim king says:

    Enjoyed your account of creating a modern new look for your ‘traditional’ fireplace.
    We’ve got a roughly similar situation in our 1950s house that’s in the middle of a major renovation. When we bought the house in March of this year it came complete with a gigantic river rock fireplace and enormous poured concrete raised hearth (about 13′ long, 3.5′ deep and about 12″ off the floor). We’ve stripped off all the river rock, demolished the hearth entirely and we’ve got a jumbo brick facing around the remaining firebox and chimney. Our intention now is to install a long low contemporary modern gas insert using the existing flue and frame back to it with steel studs and cement board – not all that different from what you’ve done.
    The idea of creating a concrete look with Ardex trowelled onto the cement board is appealing and the budget price for that seems way more attractive than ceramic tile or, for example, marble facing.
    The one concern I have is whether or not the ardex finish would be subject to cracking as a result of the heating/cooling expansion and contraction when we use the new fireplace. I notice you don’t seem to use your fireplace any longer – or at least so it seems from your notes. Just wondering if that was something you’d considered or thought about.
    Many thanks.

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Jim! We really never used our fireplace, lol! I think we have only lit 2 fires in the nearly 3 years we have been here. That said, given the fact that there is brick behind it and a chimney flue, I am not concerned about cracking. When we lit a fire to test how hot it would get where we wanted to hang the TV, we did not notice the surface of the brick (before we applied the cement board and concrete) getting warm at all. I hope that helps!

  19. Mathieu Bouthillette says:

    Congratulations on this project, Turns out great !
    I’m looking into building my own mantel design in my new home and was looking at concrete but I’m wondering how resistant is it to impact ? Does the “surface” concrete ship away if knocked ?

    Thanks you .

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thank you, Mathieu! It hasn’t chipped or cracked at all. I was worried when we mounted our TV that screwing into the concrete would cause it to chip or crack, but it didn’t. I hope that helps!

  20. Lesa Horton says:

    Hi, Thank you for sharing your GREAT idea!!! Just Beautiful. Really updated your room.!

  21. CARLA says:

    I love this. I have been battling with my fireplace for a long time now, not sure of what I wanted to do with it. This may be the perfect solution. It is now painted drywall, so can you tell me how I should prep it before coating with the concrete?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Carla! Thanks :) With painted drywall, you could just slap the concrete right on top of it. No special prep work needed! I hope that helps!

  22. […] Concrete Fireplace | Designer Trapped in a Lawyers Body […]

  23. Barbara Lowell says:

    Love concrete, with u all the way! Was looking for confirmation that this would work because I contacted cement companies and they all said they do not recommend such a process and know of no product that would work! I had a butcher block formica old kitchen counter and I updated it by tiling it with a combo of rustic tiles and large and small real slate tiles, and then of course sealing it. It is black and now too heavy although I still love it. I was toying with the idea of covering it in concrete but I was afraid it would crack or chip off since I would be applying it over all the large and small tiles, some of them are slick glazed. I have used creamy white oil based epoxy to cover an entire kitchen of bold blue & yellow mexican tile and it totally transformed the boldness, but it did chip here and there and I had to redo it at least once a year. I love that we can all exchange ideas with each other. Thanx so much, clear and inspiring instructions!

  24. Carolyn Vick says:

    This is fabulous!! I have wanted this for my fireplace for a couple of years. Took off the mantle and got it covered with the necessary fireboard and even painted with a shiny fire retardant paint because everyone I spoke to about it professed that they didn’t understand what I wanted or can’t be done. So I have the answer now thanks to you. I am on it.

  25. Claudia says:

    Love it. We have a second home that we will be retiring to one day. The fireplace is hideous gray rock. This could be the perfect solution. And affordable. The house is on a small lake so the land is beautiful but the house will need updates. Just found your blog.

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Claudia! Sounds like this could work for you! So happy you found my blog :)

      • Candi Turney says:

        I found your site through pinterest while looking for ideas for our fireplace but… we are also looking for some good colors. I love blue and need a good blue for our living room (to go with a fireplace redo!). What color do you have on these walls? I love it!

      • Jimbo says:

        Hi Tasha– when you hung the concrete board– did you frame it or did you just hang it directly onto the brick? did you use liquid adhesive (i dont know if this would be combustion-safe) or some concrete fasteners, and is it still holding well to the brick? thanks!

        • Tasha A. says:

          Hi Jimbo, we screwed the concrete board directly into the brick and used masonry screws. It is still holding perfectly. Hope that helps!

  26. Cari says:

    I think I want to do this to our 1980’s built raised ranch fireplace. The bricks used are vanilla colored with sparkles intermixed, ( so ugly ). Did you think about painting the cement after you finished ? I’m thinking about doing that in a neutral color, and possibly painting a geometrical design on it. Would that be too difficult?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Cari! We didn’t think of painting the concrete because we really wanted it to look like concrete, but I suppose your could paint it. I have also heard of others who add color to the concrete, though I haven’t tried it. Love the idea of a geometric design :)

  27. Kris Ceccato says:

    I love the look of this but I really love the color of your walls though. Do you know what color it is?

  28. Tsu Dho Nimh says:

    COOL!

    Were you tempted to leave the exposed brick? Paint the brick?

    Or was it concrete in the vision all the time?

    • Tasha A. says:

      We always intended to apply the concrete finish. We wanted a contemporary look for our contemporary house. Thanks for taking the time to comment!

  29. Dave says:

    What is the wall color in that room? Brand of paint?

  30. Jenn S. says:

    Love the look of this! Great job :)
    We are considering doing this to our fireplace as well. Our fireplace is just drywall with a granite front just around the fireplace itself, and granite hearth inset into the floor in front of the fireplace.
    Do you think it would be possible to just apply the Ardex directly to the drywall?
    Thanks!

  31. Katie Jensen says:

    Love the new look! Wondering about the fireplace insert and if that is included in the$100 price? If so, where did you get it? Thanks!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thanks so much, Katie! We removed the old insert, but did not put a new one in–we just painted the inside with high-heat resistant black paint. It is included in the $100 price. Hope that helps!

  32. Deanna says:

    Hi! I was wondering if you had a receiver, dvd player… We recently bought a new house that has a floor to ceiling tile fireplace. There was an outlet to plug in the tv so we did not have to run wires but where do you keep the receivers? That’s what I’m struggling with. Right now they are on an end table next to the fireplace. Ugly…lol…

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Deanna! We have just enough space behind our TV to mount our wireless cable box and dvd player. We purchased a radio signal remote and everything works perfectly. I hope that helps!

  33. Bailey says:

    Love love love! I have been searching for an affordable, beautiful and modern update for our brick fireplace and this fits the bill. I love to have a mantel though. Thinking a reclaimed wood look to warm up the concrete. Did you consider adding one and can
    it be done with this project? Thanks again for the fabulous project idea!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thanks so much, Bailey! We did think of adding a wood mantel, but we did not want to have to hang our TV any higher, so we opted to go without, but I think it would look BEAUTIFUL. It could absolutely be done.

  34. Debbra Stolarik says:

    This looks FANTASTIC! I have been searching and searching for how to do this and it always seemed over-complicated and too expensive. I feel I should pay you a designer fee! Thank you so much.

  35. Patrice says:

    Love the idea and the results!!

  36. Melissa says:

    Hi there. Nice job! Did you consider not demolishing the stone, and just building over it? I have a very similar look, and I would really like to make a change, but the demo intimidates me!!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Melissa! We did NOT want to demo either, but when we looked into building over it, we ran into building code issues because of the proximately of wood framing to the fireplace. It may be possible where you live, though!

      • Gina says:

        Couldn’t you just ardex over the brick?

        • Tasha A. says:

          Hi Gina! Our brick was very uneven and chipped after the demo, so we needed the cement board to even things out before we added the concrete overlay.

          • So if the brick is even, adding the cement to the grouted areas and then evening it up with concreate overall would work? Or would we need to score the brick to make sure that the concrete would stick?

          • Tasha says:

            You could do that, just prepare to use more coats. You shouldn’t need to score the brick.

  37. Eric says:

    Do you know the ratio of adding color to the Ardex Feather Finish 10lb bag? How much white powder should I add to change the color to white?

    Thanks

  38. Jutta says:

    This is great. Thanks for sharing. I may follow suit, in a slightly altered way.

  39. johna nwamanna says:

    Hi — I love this fireplace but I have a question. I really want to hang our tv over our fireplace and everyone we have spoken with says that it is detrimental to the tv to do so if you ever plan on using the fireplace. Do you use your fireplace? Was this a concern for you?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Johah! We had that concern, too. We wound up lighting a fire and taking temperature measurements to make sure the temps wouldn’t be too high for the TV. That said, we haven’t lit a single fire since we hung the TV, not because we are worried, just because we don’t have much occasion to light fires. Hope that helps!

  40. Courtney says:

    what a beautiful job’! It looks great. Personally, I would of kept the original exposed brick. That was gorgeous! Especially distressed brick. I can’t believe anyone would cover up the brick though!!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thanks, Courtney! I love brick, too! We would have kept it in a traditional home, but since our home is so contemporary, we wanted a sleeker look and just love the concrete. Happy holidays!

  41. Your concrete fireplace is a big improvement over that stone. I am surprised that someone had covered up that original brick…but I love brick and digress. Your whole makeover of the room is so inviting!

  42. Colleen says:

    Hi Tasha! I love your work! Is it possible to apply the Ardex directly over a marble fireplace surround? I’m trying to avoid the cement board step:-)
    Thank you in advance for your help!
    Colleen

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Colleen! As long as the marble is in good condition {not cracked, chipped, etc}, you should absolutely be able to apply the Ardex directly over it! I would sand it first to remove the smooth finish, but otherwise, go for it! If you do, I would love to hear how it turns out!

  43. cindi says:

    love the look; question: what did you use on the inside of the fireplace; it looks like black paint; what can you use that isn’t flammable once you light the fireplace? I like the black interior. thanks!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Cindi! Yes, we did paint the firebox black with a high heat spray paint that is for fireplaces, grills, etc. You can find it at your home improvement store! I hope that helps!

  44. Shari says:

    Hi Tasha – you may have already answered this question, but it looks like you painted the firebox. If so, what did you use and are you still able to light a fire once painted?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Shari! We used a special high heat paint that is intended for fireplaces, grills, etc. So, yep, we can still light fires in it {and have}! Hope that helps!

  45. Erin says:

    I LOVE your fireplace & I’m so impressed with how you figured it out. I’ve been wanting to do a concrete makeover to our fireplace & wanted to ask…why is it necessary to have brick under the concrete board? What if you just had a wood frame or some such thing?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Erin! Thank you. I suppose it could be some other type of masonry, such as cinder block, but you need to make sure there is some other fireproof structural support for your chimney underneath the stone facade. I hope that makes sense. We thought about doing a wood frame on top of the stone surface, but that would not have met the building code here in North Carolina. I hope that helps!

  46. Tricia Zimmerman says:

    Just finished demolishing my 1970s hideous lava rock fireplace. Left the stone hearth and rocks on bottom and stained them with concrete stain and have to say it looks much better. Would like to do what you did to the top part. Really like the simplicity of the look. Was it really as easy as you say? Think I would like to add some color to it though and will check out the options. Good job!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thank you, Tricia! It REALLY was easy to attach the cement board and work with the Ardex Feather Finish product! The hard work was getting all of that stone off! I hope that helps!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thanks, Tricia! Yes, it was really easy to do. I have heard others say they have added color to the cement, but I have not tried that. Thanks for reading my blog!

  47. Martin says:

    Thanks for your post! We just ripped out our gas fireplace, mantle and removed the drywall down to the studs. We put the concrete boards up and were ready for either tile or stone when I saw your post. You said brick is required underneath. I’m wondering since we are replacing the gas with an electric fireplace (no flames) if the brick is necessary? Let me know what you think. Also, after putting all the layers of concrete on yours, how thick do you think it ended up being? I’ve got about 3/4″ of space for thickness and I’m wondering if that is enough for your concrete application. Thanks again!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Martin! I suppose it could be some other type of masonry, such as cinder block, but you need to make sure there is some other fireproof structural support for your chimney underneath the stone facade. We thought about doing a wood frame on top of the stone surface, but that would not have met the building code here in North Carolina. I don’t know if that would have been different if we were installing an electric fireplace. You may need to check your building code. As for the thickness, it’s WAY less than 3/4 of an inch thick. It’s probably 1/4 inch thick. I hope that helps!

  48. Kate says:

    Do all rock fireplaces have brick underneath? We had an ugly stone one that I have painted white, but if there is brick underneath that would be fantastic!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Kate! Unfortunately, I have no idea. We weren’t sure what was going to be under ours. You could probably have your fireplace inspected to find out. Hope that helps!

  49. Stephanie says:

    I love it, what a great concept!! I do have a few questions though. Would you say that the concrete could be stained to get a different color to it? Also, I do like the character the different lines and patterns that developed on your concrete, but is there a way to have it be one, solid colored surface? I’ve always wanted concrete kitchen counters but I don’t necessarily want it to look like typical concrete. Amazing idea!!!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Stephanie! Thank you! Ardex makes a very similar product that can be tinted, but I can’t recall the name of it off the top of my head. It’s a bit more expensive than the Feather Finish, but still totally affordable. I don’t know if there is any way to avoid color differentiation/trowel marks even if you color it. If you want a uniform looking surface, this probably is not your best option. I hope that helps!

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Stephanie! I have heard others say they have added color to the cement, but I have not tried that. I think trowel marks and variation in the color cannot be avoided, though. Thanks for reading my blog!

  50. […] revealed powder room makeover, so I had to get creative.  We had successfully created our own DIY concrete fireplace and loved the results, so we took a risk and decided to attempt the same technique on our vanity. […]

  51. gary says:

    will the concrete develop cracks? if they do, do you just use concrete patch?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Gary! We have used this product on three different surfaces now {a fireplace, laundry room counter top and powder room vanity} and we haven’t had any cracks at all. Hope that helps!

  52. […] Concrete fireplace: Love the look of concrete and clean lines? You can use concrete to update for fireplace for less […]

  53. […] say, I think this is my favorite part!  I added some pumpkins and a basket to hold blankets to our DIY concrete fireplace and LOVE how it looks.  It also doesn’t hurt that orange is the accent color in our family […]

  54. Jeremy says:

    How visible are the Durorock seems?

    • Tasha A. says:

      Hi Jeremy. They are not visible at all. They were visible for the first 3 coats or so, but were then covered completely by the concrete. I hope that helps.

  55. […] the FUN PART!  The concrete!  We used Ardex- Feather Finish{which we have also used to create our DIY concrete fireplace}.  Mix it according to the directions on the bag and then apply it to the recessed letters with a […]

  56. […] > Concrete Fire Place by Designer Trapped in a Lawyers Body < […]

  57. suzee says:

    Its absolutley beautiful!!

  58. dave e. says:

    How anyone could defend or support keeping the fireplace as it was is beyond me. “Heinous” comes to mind…

    Amazing job. Now, if we just had a fireplace… ( …sigh… ) LOL

    • Tasha A. says:

      Thanks, Dave! I agree with you. I could not believe the number of people that liked the fireplace before. Different strokes for different folks, I guess!

  59. […] concrete surface in-place, applied just like drywall mud, and it actually turns out pretty great for walls, mantles and even […]

  60. Duzzy Fice says:

    Astonishing make-over of a total eyesore fireplace. Yes, I can see that the stone is outdated and has a strange shine to it in several places. Normally, I enjoy the natural look of stone, but this stuff was just plain U-G-L-Y! I am a bit eclectic with my decor, choosing to go with what works for me and my family, what makes it feel good to us, items that are comfortable, but still have form and function. I often mix ‘styles’ together, such as modern contemporary colours, or a funky accessory paired with with an old antique piece, just to get the proper look, I applaud your decision to go with your heart and replace the fireplace surround. It looks very modern without appearing ‘cold’ because of how you arranged the rest of the room. Go with your gut instinct, it almost never fails. The new fireplace surround is fabulous and all I have to say is: Good on you!

  61. […] from Designer Trapped in a Lawyers Body […]

  62. I love it! Even the brick was better than the stone. I might have stopped there and painted the brick, but I love what you did, that stone was really ugly.

  63. Chelsea says:

    WOAH Tasha!!! It looks AMAZING!! Such a huge transformation and I love the new modern look. Great job!!

  64. I can’t believe this was only $100! It looks gorgeous! WAY better than the old, outdated brass fireplace.

  65. Love this so much, you’re being featured on The DIY’ers today! http://homecomingmn.blogspot.com/2014/03/the-diyers-54.html

  66. Where did you get your curtains?

  67. […] DIY Concrete Fireplace from Designer Trapped in a Lawyer’s Body. […]

  68. […] DIY Concrete Fireplace from Designer Trapped in a Lawyer’s Boday […]

  69. […] favorite from last week was from Designer Trapped and the $100 makeover of a Fire Place and Mantle to Concrete. I LOVE the way it turned […]

  70. This is beautiful, Tasha! And great post too – so many good tips. I have been wanting to try out a concrete project lately. Thank you so much for linking up at The Makers.

  71. Wow! What a difference–I love it! I’ll be featuring this at the next Frugal Crafty Home Blog Hop tomorrow night! I hope to see you back!

  72. I absolutely love this project! So amazing as always! The very first project on my list for our new house (fingers crossed until we close!) is DIY concrete countertops. I have to eradicate the sad laminate right away. I may have lots of questions for you :) You just think of the most amazing inexpensive projects that look like a million bucks :) Have a great weekend!!

  73. Nancherrow says:

    I kinda think this is brilliant. Way to use non traditional materials for a beautiful finish. Cement board? Would never have come up with that! I love how it looks and wouldn’t change a thing! Would love for you to share at Fridays Unfolded!

    Alison
    Nancherrow

    • Tasha says:

      Thanks so much, Alison. The cement board was just put on to even out the brick surface. The real smooth finish came from the Ardex Feather Finish concrete product that we applied on top of the cement board. Thanks so much for the invitation to your party. I’ll go check it out!

  74. Love this transformation! Now you got me thinking where can I add a concrete anything in my house lol
    Thank you for sharing :)

  75. […] My FAVORITE part of this DIY family room transformation is the fireplace.  I am sure there are many people out there who will say, “WHY did you remove the stone from your fireplace?!”  This is why…I felt like it was a very “traditional” look that felt out of place to me in such a contemporary home.  I felt that the fireplace needed a contemporary look.  I was obsessed with concrete fireplaces that I was seeing all over Pinterest and I was willing to hire the job out.  But, professionals told us it either could not be done or it would cost us $2,000 to $3,000 and that they “thought” it would work.  Ummmm, no thanks.  Long story short {the long story will be the subject of an upcoming post}, I researched a ton and found a phenomenal concrete product called Ardex Feather Finish, which allowed us to transform the fireplace totally on our own for $100.  That’s right–a DIY concrete fireplace!  No, I’m not kidding.  Take a look at that transformation.  You can find the detailed tutorial for our DIY concrete fireplace here! […]

  76. Linda says:

    Wow…what a huge difference. Your right that the look isn’t for everyone but kudos to you and your husband for making it into something you both really like! I liked the brick after the rock was removed….my taste would be to paint the brick white like I’ve seen so many people do.
    Blessings,
    Linda

    • Thanks, Linda! We thought about painting the brick, but it was pretty badly damaged from removing the stone (the mortar was more difficult to get off than the stone and resulted in big chunks of brick falling off). Plus, we did think that painted brick was another traditional, though MUCH more attractive option and still wanted something more contemporary. I do LOVE painted brick fireplaces in period homes, though. We had one in our former home that was built in 1926 and I just loved it! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment!

  77. I LOOOOOOOVE this look! I would want to do this to ours now although, I think our stone is the only layer and we are not big enough DIYers to attempt this…but I will enjoy the pics of yours! Eye candy!

  78. That before and after from the playroom is crazy! Love what you guys are doing with the space.

  79. graceanne says:

    This looks wonderful. How did you end up routing your connections from your TV and where do you house your component devices…cable box, tuner, blue ray etc. We just installed our TV over the fireplace and have the wires temporarily draped everywhere. My room is similar to yours with the fireplace flanked by a sliding door on one side and a larger window on the other. I was hesitant to add narrow cabinets as I thought it would distract from the fireplace and make the room more narrow. Any suggestions? Thanks for posting the Ardex info!

    • Thank you! We have AT&T Uverse for our cable, which means we have a wireless box. That helps minimize the cables. We house all the components behind the TV (the bracket we used leaves just enough room behind the TV to mount a small DVD player and our wireless cable box. We don’t have any other components. We use an radio frequency remote that allows us to control the components without having to have a sight line to them (like an an infrared remote requires). I hope that helps!

      As for your question about the cabinets, I would probably skip them and just make the fireplace the focus :)

  80. What a fantastic makeover. I love the concrete look. So modern!!

  81. Kathy says:

    I absolutely love your projects. This fireplace is a definite improvement. I love concrete inside also, however, I like it shiny. I am going to see if I can color the product. Thank you so much for sharing!!

  82. […] incredible, right!?  Ahhhhhh, I just love ARDEX! Find all the details and Tasha’s full project here!!  Thanks for sharing […]

  83. Amber says:

    Thank you for the tutorial! How do you feel that the concrete finish is holding up? I really want to use the concrete to redo counters, but my husband is worried it might chip and break off… any thoughts?

    • Hey Amber! Thanks for coming by. Our fireplace is holding up amazingly well! I stand on it and sit on it frequently. We were worried it would crack when we drilled into it to hang our TV, but it didn’t. It’s amazing. We also used the Ardex Feather finish on our laundry room counter top (which you can check out in my laundry room post) and those are holding up well, too! No chipping, cracking or anything. I wouldn’t hesitate to use them in a kitchen!

  84. Im so glad you posted this!! I love it and was curious how you did it when I saw your room reveal post. I can’t believe people loved that stone, bleh. No thanks. The concrete is so modern. Would love if you shared on Link It or Lump it, I am the new permanent co-host!! http://www.sohosonnet.com/link-it-or-lump-it/link-it-or-lump-it-link-party-27/

  85. Your fireplace is amazing! And congrats on your awesome feature. I love seeing you transform your house into your own style.

  86. Remy says:

    Excellent project! looks really nice, plus it gives a modern style to the living room.

  87. Jackie says:

    Well, what can I say! It’s FAB!!! Thx so much for sharing!

  88. Whoa! That was a huge project but it looks AWESOME! Congrats on all your hard work!

    ~ Ashley

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