The thing that sold me on this house over others, even the ones with a little bit more room, was that those original features that are hardest to restore were still in place. The floorboards throughout are in pretty good nick and the original sash windows are still standing, though in need of a little love. 

The house, however, is a tale of four fireplaces. Three had been removed (they even put built-in drawers into one, which, I mean kudos on the inventiveness, but why?), leaving only one remaining in living room. I knew it was painted and that I was going to try and take it back to its base, but it wasn't until we moved in that I noticed how caked in paint the decorative details on it were. 

I started off with a palette knife chipping away at the paint, and it turned out that this fireplace had been painted six times at least, and there were some pretty nutty colours under there. A lot of elbow grease later and the mass of it was off, revealing the blackened iron underneath. 


When it came to the more detailed parts, I applied a paint stripper, which made the remaining paint go super goopy. I worked it off with a wire bristle brush, but it wasn't much fun. 

Finally, when it was all cleared, I gave it a once over with some bbq and stove paint from Rust-Oleum to bring the black back to life. 

I'd ripped up the old tiles on a whim half way through this process, then went on the hunt for some new ones. Looking for something monochrome and patterned, I spotted these Scintilla tiles from Walls and Floors on The Frugality's feed. They come in a larger format with a faux-break in between each four designs on a tile - great for a floor, but not ideal for a fireplace. They needed cutting down, but I'd recently inherited a wet tile cutter and it was a pretty simple job with that in hand. 

The only thing left to do is put a little beading around the edge of the tiles, but that's on the back burner until the floor is sorted. 

Now for the fun part - styling it up. 

First up the mirror - a frameless, grey-tinted design from House Doctor, which you can find at Amara. It's not the most useful for looking at yourself in, but it kind of gives it the feeling that's it's a piece of art, while still helping reflect light and giving the room a sense of depth. 

I'm bound to change up the accessories on the mantel from time to time, but I particularly loved this horse candle I picked up at John Lewis a few months back. 

So, one down, three to go on the fireplace front - better get hunting out some replacements for those ones that have already been taken out. 

Photo 30-03-2018, 09 25 48.jpg
luke wellsComment