Our lounge is long and narrow with floor to ceiling patio doors and windows both ends of the room so we knew we would have to have the TV in the middle of the room.
We knew we wanted a fireplace to make the room cosier and to add some character to the house but couldn’t fit both in so we decided to build a false fireplace with chimney breast that could also double up as storage for the TV, sound bar, sky box, DVD player and all the messy cables that come with them.
We started by choosing the fire and decided to go for a bio-ethanol fire because we wanted it to have a real flame and do not have a gas pipe near the lounge.
We couldn’t have a real log burner as the wall we needed it to go on is connected to our neighbour’s house and to be honest we didn’t require this for a heat source it is just for the look and comfort having a real flame brings. Being a new build, the central heating and insulation is so good I think we would all cook with a real log burner and with a bio-ethanol fire you don’t get any dust and you pay for it as you go rather than receiving a large gas bill. After some research online, we chose our fire from imaginfires and used the dimensions of this to decide the size of the overall chimney breast. At the same time, we chose and ordered a slate hearth from a shop on Amazon (more details below) this was delivered cut to the right shape and size for us and ready to fit.
Next, we built a frame out of 2 x 4 timber and attached it to the floor, wall and ceiling. We then fitted the slate hearth to the concrete floor using adhesive so we could plaster board on top of this to make it look more realistic.
We then chose the decorative oak beam that goes through the middle. We looked in fireplace shops and they wanted hundreds of pounds for these so I bought ours from funky chunky furniture (more details below) and attached the beam using the fixing anchors that were supplied with the beam.
We then fixed timber across the middle of the frame where we wanted to hang our TV and prepared this area ready for the TV bracket. We could then plaster board three quarters of the chimney breast and drill the holes for the different cables so we could have these already fed through when the plaster boarding was complete.
We decided to also fit dimmable heat resistant lights underneath the fireplace to have a cosy feel when the fire isn’t lit and fitted the dimmable switch around the corner where the sky box will be fitted.
We decided it was best to get a plasterer in to plaster the chimney breast as we wanted a really nice finish and it was so worth the £80 we paid as we could not of achieved the finish he gave us.
Finally, we fitted some real oak shelving that we bought and cut from B&Q and painted the whole area starting with a white wash as it was on bare plaster and fitted the TV and other appliances.
In total we spent £1106 on this project.
£499 For the fire from
£300 for Timber and Plaster Board from B&Q
£150 for the slate Hearth from Coventry Wood Burners Ltd from Amazon
£77 For the Oak Mantel Shelf from Funky Chunky Furniture from Amazon
We had originally planned to put a TV unit in the lounge that matches the rest of the furniture and that would of cost £560 but I think we have gained so much more by spending the extra £546.We love the fire and it really does kick out some heat so we have to turn the heating completely off when we use it and the best thing is you pay for it as you go. It's around £6 a 2ltr bottle of bio fuel and that will last you at least 10 hours of burning time.
I also think we have created a lovely feature/focal point to the room that hopefully gives it a bit more character whilst providing the home we needed for the TV.
In an ideal world I would have liked a mirror above the fireplace with beautiful candle sticks but I had to compromise this for the TV.
I think this is something that will always be here and will grow old with the house.
If you are wanting to add a feature to your home give it a go. We found this project easier than we thought we would.
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