Fireplace Makeover: Transforming Our ’90s Fireplace

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Transforming Our Dated Fireplace

If you have followed me for a while on my blog (or even on Instagram), you will know that we moved into our dream home in the fall of 2020. That year was such a tough year, but finding our current house and selling our previous home was a dream come true, and definitely a bright spot during that time.

We had recently updated and ‘finished’ our previous home, and we knew that there would be things in the new home to tackle, but it did not dampen my spirits in the least. I think any time you move into a new home, you need time to really make it “yours.” Thankfully, the previous owners had done a ton of work, so there isn’t much we have to do. The main bedroom and bathroom are very dated, however.

The biggest project in the bedroom was the fireplace. Here are a few pictures I snapped when we moved in:

While the marble fireplace is nice because it’s good quality, it just feels dated and the colors don’t work with my decor. All of the surrounding area around the green marble was actually a honey oak until the previous owners painted it white. The design of the fireplace is great, and the white brings it into the 21st century, but I decided that I needed to do something with the marble.

I wasn’t too excited about taking a sledgehammer to the marble or trying to pry it off, so I finally decided to tile over it. I had two options: regular tile and grout, or peel and stick tile. Since I had never worked with real tile before, I decided to go with peel and stick. I figured if I messed up too badly, it could be pried off a little more easily than a regular tile.

I ordered a few samples from TileBar and then narrowed it down to this one. One of the things that I considered when choosing peel and stick was the heat factor. Would the heat cause the tiles to slide down after the fireplace had been on for a while? I did a test by running the fireplace for about an hour and the marble stayed fairly cool/room temperature. Since I don’t really use the fireplace more than an hour, this was good enough for me.

The process was actually not that difficult; just time consuming. I started with the floor section first and the pieces fit in perfectly. I had to trim a few edge pieces with a razor blade, but where my cutting job might have been a little crooked, a little caulk hid any uneven edges.

Since this was a peel and stick tile, it was designed to sit right next to another tile without gaps. But there were still small hairline spaces that bothered me, so I simply caulked all of the gaps just like you would grout a regular tile. It helped to give the tile a more finished look.

As my stepdad used to say, ‘Do your best and then caulk the rest.’ This is great advice and I live by this motto!

If you are interested in any of the decor pieces, I’ve linked a few below. Thanks for reading!

  • 22″ tan and white vase (also comes in a smaller size) (shop here)
  • Framed art (shop here)
  • Similar basket (shop here)

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