Easy DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

I’ve been looking for a vintage mantel for my antique booth for quite a while. When I’m lucky enough to find one, the price tag is always more than I’m willing to spend. Since I’m planning to use it for display and to create a “room” in my booth, it doesn’t need to be anything fancy. It finally occurred to me that I could just make my own DIY faux fireplace and mantel.

DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

I’m once again participating in the At Home DIY Challenge with a group of talented bloggers. The theme for this month is “build it cheaper than buying it”. Many thanks to Eileen from Just Measuring Up and Megan from Two Feet First for coordinating these challenges. Be sure to click the link at the end of this post to see all of the other creative projects!

I got my inspiration from something I saw on Pinterest, but that mantel was built with authentic barn wood. Instead, I decided to use new wood and try my best to make it look old.

raw lumber pieces for DIY faux fireplace and mantel project

Using my living room fireplace as a template, I figured out the height and width that I wanted. My DIY faux fireplace and mantel design requires just 7 pieces of lumber. I ordered the wood from our local hardware store and had it pre-cut to my dimensions. (If you read my blog, you know that I don’t “do” power tools).

Here’s what I ordered:

  • (2) 1×8’s – 53″ 
  • (2) 1×4’s – 49″ 
  • (1) 1×4 – 60″
  • (1) 2×3 – 60″ 
  • (1) 1×8 – 68″

Total spent: $56.00

making dents and dings in a piece of new lumber to resemble older wood

I banged the new wood up a bit with a hammer and screwdriver. I wanted it to get some dings and dents to mimic older wood.

applying brown wax to a piece of raw wood
lumber covered with brown wax

To age the wood, I applied Dixie Belle Best Dang Wax in brown. I used a wax brush to apply the wax in a circular motion. The wax will settle into my “dings and dents” and accentuate those imperfections. You can see another way that I used brown wax on this stool makeover.

wiping brown wax off of a piece of raw wood
buffing brown wax off of a piece of raw wood

Next, I wiped the wax off and buffed with a cotton rag. I love how you get the look of “stained” wood quickly and without the strong odor. As a bonus, the wood is also sealed! I recommend letting the wax cure for a few days. As I was on a blog deadline and didn’t have extra time, the assembly was a bit messy!

lining up the first pieces of wood to make a faux fireplace and mantel

I laid the wood pieces down to assemble the fireplace and mantel. Start with the two 53″ 1×8’s and lay them down vertically.

assembling a diy faux fireplace and mantel

Lay the 60″ 1×4 horizontally across the top of the two 1×8’s. Then center the two 49″ 1×4’s vertically on top of the 1×8’s.

laying down the wood pieces to assemble a diy faux fireplace and mantel

Put the 60″ 2×3 horizontally on the top of the upper 60″ 1×4.

hammering a nail into the top portion of a faux fireplace and mantel

Attach the three top layers with a nail at each end. A drill will make this much easier. I’m using a hammer and nails because my drill wasn’t charged. Once again…blog deadlines!

assembling the mantel piece

Attach the two decorative 49″ 1×4’s to the vertical 1×8’s. Then add the 68″ 1×8 mantel piece to the top and attach to the 60″ 2×3.

DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

I just leaned this up against the wall for staging, but you’ll want to secure it to the wall with nails. I really love how it turned out!

side view of DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

This would add a lot of decorative impact to a plain wall. Wouldn’t it be fun in a bedroom?

DIY Faux Fireplace and Mantel

I just love decorating mantels! Especially during the holidays ๐Ÿ™‚

Now it’s time to check out the projects from my blogger friends. Enjoy!


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  1. This mantle looks spectacular. I love the dark walnut colour you used for it. I am wanting to build some sort of mantel shelf for our super boring bungalow and this is great inspiration. Pinning.

  2. That is a really smart way to create a faux mantel. Love the low profile… it would be perfect for an apartment or tiny home! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Pinned!

  3. Rebecca this is a great DIY and doesnโ€™t look to hard. I really love it leaning against the wall, really shows your style. Great job!!

  4. Great DIY idea! I’ve used Dixie Belle paints before, but I haven’t tried their wax yet. I might have to give it a try sometime.

  5. You did an amazing job with this project, Rebecca! It looks amazing in your booth and is going to be great for creating displays to draw customers in to see what you have for sale. I have never thought about using dark wax to stain wood. I’m going to try your method out the next time I need to stain something a dark color.

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