So this is what finishing a project feels like!

Hello, my name is Kelli and I am a compulsive project starter.

Project finisher, not so much.  I don’t know if it is some sort of adult ADD or just too many good ideas (hhahaah!) but I just get distracted and move on way too quickly.

But these last few weeks have been productive ones, and now here’s the first of two posts on the rarely seen finishing of a project.

Trimming the fireplace surround/bookcase:

My husband and my father built me this beautiful piece of furniture two Christmases ago after we’d purchased an electric stove to fill the space where a fireplace should have gone (the only thing I didn’t love about my house when I bought it was that there was no fireplace – tragic, but hey, we’re in California).  They’d built it in secret, working on it during the week when I was at work, my husband forgoing sleep after working graveyard shifts – he’s a saint and I’m lucky to have him in my life, for real.  They even managed to sneak it in the house after convincing me to go out Christmas shopping – lol, convincing – while they moved it in pieces from my parents’ house.  I cried some surprised, happy tears.

And then we let the dang thing sit there as we tried to decide what trim we wanted to put on it, what paint, or stain, or well, maybe both paint and stain, I dunno, what do you think?  After much hemming and hawing, we decided what to do and headed to the hardware store.

Here’s how it started out:

Poor lighting and Christmas Decorations not standard.
Poor lighting and Christmas decorations not standard.

Bare wood, rough edges and boxy.

Our house, built in the 1940’s, has gone through some updates through the years but it still retains much of the charm that old houses have, such as scalloped archways between rooms, real hardwood floors, and decorative trim on the ceilings.  Not wanting to compete with any of these, we opted for a more streamlined look with a stained mantle, flat white paint, and straight edges on the front and sides.

And then the work started:

One coat of primer, and trim on the side.
One coat of primer, and trim on the side.

Side view


Our next step was to install some faux brick behind the area where the stove went.  This step took FOREVER, because of an inventory issue at the hardware store.  Seriously, I’ve spent some time wandering before, but never that long for just one thing!  We didn’t leave empty-handed though, so it still counts as a win!



This took the better part of one day, what with all the cutting and checking and recutting and shopping and painting and so on.  We slept hard that night and went back to work the next morning.

All the while during this process, I had been staining and sanding and staining and then coating the mantle, which you may have noticed had disappeared in the above photos.  Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos.  Boo.

Day 2:

We painted, added on the last bit of trim, waited, checked and repainted the spots we missed, and finally – FINALLY – we were done.

done 1





One Comment

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  1. Tammy Mcgeorgr May 7, 2015 — 7:01 pm

    Beautiful!! Such an accomplishment. A treasured keepsake for sure!

    Liked by 1 person

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