The Family Room Makeover

Today I’m sharing something I’m really excited about! We moved into our house about a year ago and one of the things I fell in love with was the giant family room. One giant, but cozy room with a brick fireplace, tall ceilings, big windows. It is a fantastic room but it needed a little umpf, it needed to be warmed up and filled with a comfy charm. For the last year I have been toying with decorating the fireplace as is, but I can’t quite get it right no matter what I did, and what I struggled with is the two-sided mantle and all the brick… so much brick! When we moved in I also simultaneously found the show Fixer Upper and was hooked. Which leads us to this post today.

Since my main problem with the mantle was all the brick I decided that I needed to break it up or to add something to differentiate this wall from the rest. So I decided to add something to the sides of the chimney, where it used to be just painted drywall that was the same as the color on the other walls. Since I started watching Fixer Upper I fell in love with shiplap so of course I decided that shiplap would be my cozy difference for this space. I decided to do shiplap on the sides of the chimney as well as a white wood mantle over the existing brick mantle.




One of the other challenging parts of my family room is that the ceilings are slanted which creates a harsh angle where the wall meets the ceiling. I consider myself a rather handy person, I know how to work tools and I don’t rely on my husband to do all the house projects, but one thing I’ve never been good at is measuring or cutting angles. I hate math. Which put me in a pickle in terms of what I wanted to do, so I played the BFF card and asked my friend Emily to build me a mantle. And while she was at our house measuring for the mantle I somehow, amazingly, convinced her to also help me do shiplap on the sides of the chimney!


Once we picked a weekend to do it we headed to Home Depot where we got all the shiplap and trim for around $150 all-in.  We ended up getting 26 boards which seemed like a lot to me but it worked out perfectly, and gave us some wiggle room to make mistakes. Once we loaded it all up we came home and measured the width of the boards and started cutting. It was amazingly easy to to get it onto the wall. The thing that took the longest was climbing the gigantic ladder to get all the way to the top.


Once the shiplap was up we started measuring the siding that would cover the cracks between the wall/brick and shiplap. My poor Emily, she had a hell of a time getting the angles right, but she ended up doing it perfectly and it looks great!


After the siding went up we finally got to paint and place the mantle on the brick and then we were all done! I really think it brightens up the room and adds some character, it also makes all the brick seem much less daunting.

AnnieDIY, Home Tour, New Home