DIY Board and Batten Fireplace Wall With Faux Beam Mantel

Before Christmas I shared photos of our newly finished fireplace wall and mantel. Today I would like to share the long process of completing this DIY. Like almost 4 years long! Crazy I know.

This is the finished mantel that I shared here, here and here all decked out for Christmas. 

I found this old photo from several years ago. We have owned our home since it was a new build 17 years ago but I was always unsure of what to do with this wall. The builder did not include a mantel or offer one in upgrades. They also installed the fireplace off center which was my real dilemma. How do I add a traditional mantel surround with an off center fireplace?!

The starting point was when I added board and batten to the kitchen side of this wall. It added the character that I wanted but I couldn't figure out how that would continue around to the family room side. My good blog and Instagram friend Grace  (who I have also met in real life) emailed me a mock up drawing that she did over the plain fireplace photo. That was the next step that I needed.

I changed her drawing a bit and went with a ship lap type front of the fireplace. Keep in mind that all this was done as we could afford it and occasionally waiting for my brother to rip a few pieces when we didn't have the right tools. 

I was determined to have a mantel this Christmas so while I waited for the last few pieces of mdf to be ripped (my brother was doing a bathroom reno at the time) I went ahead and constructed a rustic mantel using pine boards, wood glue and nails. I decided that without corbels or side pieces the 'floating' mantel would appear less off center.

I distressed the wood to make it look more aged and stained it with Minwax Early American. 

Once the last boards were up, I patched nail holes and painted with Benjamin Moore Snowfall White (I freshened the kitchen side and end walls at the same time.)

My hubby helps when he can but he's not very handy. He is however very helpful making dinner, or doing the dishes and laundry. Our boys have learned some serious skills so I asked our 18 year old son to make some cleats and hang the mantel.

Finally, after 17 years, including 4 years in progress, I had a mantel to decorate. My favourite combination of wood + white. Rustic, casual, and to me just about perfect.

I may still add stained wood veneer pieces to the ends for more of a 'beam' look.

This is the TV nook to the left of the fireplace with more of the board and batten wall treatment. The wall paint colour is Benjamin Revere Pewter.

 Finished just in time to decorate for Christmas!

And now that the Christmas decor is put away, I am thinking up ways to decorate our new mantel for other seasons too.

Later this week I will be sharing a few 'top 2015 posts.' Thanks for stopping by and I hope you are enjoying these days between the holidays.

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Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style


  1. I think you did a great job with an odd fireplace placement. Really, the way the inset part is, to the left of it and the right is open to another room. That is not easy to decorate or style around! Your mantle is lovely, and fits in with the other wood accents you have in your house.

  2. This is wonderful!
    Isn't it great when something finally comes together!!!

  3. It looks awesome! Enjoy your hard work.

  4. Elizabeth you did an amazing transformation turning a dull wall into an amazing art piece.
    The board and batten wall to the faux mantle!! Lovely decorated for Christmas!
    Happy New Year my friend!!

  5. I really love it! I love the "planked" look and that natural wood mantel adds the perfect contrast to the white planks. I know you will enjoy decorating it for years to come.

  6. I love the natural wood of your mantle and I think it is a stunning update!

  7. do you have a new hairstyle? you look different in your profile pic? maybe bangs or i wonder? i love the mantle & what is that wreath made from? flowers or? happy new year to you!! hope you are well. are you having snow in your neck of the woods in Canada? we had a few flurries today, the winds are so wild. it is nuts. last week was 70s. the weather is weirdly wild ( :

  8. I think it looks great and the white/wood complements your home!!

  9. That is beautiful, where did you get your wood and what size did you use? It looks perfect!


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