This, my friends, is the most dreadful fireplace and if completely removing it from my living room was an option, I would do it in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, I have to live with it...so I'm on a mission to make it over.
We don't use the fireplace. Never have. No plans to in the future. It's completely "for looks". Afterall, you can't have a 1970's American Ranch-style home without a fireplace.
There's some damage to the guts that Joal knows all about but I can't explain...no desire. It's capped on the roof -- that's all I know. The brick is matte white-ish gray-ish dull and boring. The mantlepiece is painted with a faux finish that I detest. That will definately be the first thing I tackle.
Note: that 1995 called and wants it's brassy gold fireplace door cover back. :) I seriously hate brassy gold. That has to go ASAP! Did I mention that the entire piece is not properly sized to the opening so it's balancing rather precariously...
We've gotten into the habit of making the mantle an annoying catch-all place for things like keys and everyday junk. I hate that. I want a pretty, well-decorated mantle. That's what mantles are for, afterall, right? The painting--a Julian original--needs to move to some other location. I'm attached to the stocky black candle pillars. They can stay. I'm considering an oversized mirror with a black frame, to continue the theme of black frames I have going through other parts of the house. The star is out...
I took the first steps this weekend. The mantle has been painted black.
I think the next step is to paint the brick. White.
After that, I'll have to make sure that the inside is completely sealed against the loss of warm air for the winter. When that's done, I can remove the brass beast and fill the inside area with something...still deciding exactly what. Maybe some Mason jars with candles. :)
As a last touch, I'm considering a quilt folded across the hearth. Maybe. I think it would add a little bit of warmth and softness to the hardscape. The irony of that is not lost on me. :)