This is an electric fireplace, that I will note and reiterate will never be used. The supplies I used for this are not safe for anything that will get hot. So if you are going to replicate this, be sure it is on a fireplace that is just for show. We have our big, massive and perfectly real wood burning fireplace in the living room. This was purchased to add some visual to a pretty sparse bedroom. I initially liked the black, but as we are redoing the rest of our room the black does not mesh with everything else. I needed to brighten it up! Make it shine, shine bright like a diamond!
To begin, normally I would have recommended sanding this down. However, there is a ton of small details in the fireplace, and sanding it proved to be very difficult. So instead I purchased primer, put on two thick coats of it before painting it. This also was needed to cover up all of the black paint.
This is where the movie magic comes in, also the fact that I was doing this project with three kids running around with pretty frequent interruptions. I forgot to take pictures of the painting process. I painted on two coats of a semi-gloss bright white paint. Again, this is to cover up the black paint and to help long term coverage of the fireplace itself. I wish my kid’s could just respectfully understand that Mommy is busy redoing things and being all “bloggy” and they need to give me some space. The fact that one sock is stuck or their elbow itches is not important to me! Must paint this fireplace!
Here is where what I do is awesome. Blogging being the thing that is awesome, not dealing with a child’s itchy elbow. That is just weird and awkward for all involved. I debated a great deal about how to tile this fireplace. Initially I planned to go the legit tile and grout way. The concern of the weight of the tile on this came into play. This is a particle board, glued together fireplace. I did not make it, but the lack of support and strength in this is obvious. It is solid to sit and look pretty. To hold a bunch of heavy tile might be a stretch for this. I did not want to add support or rebuild this fireplace. If I was going to do all of that I might as well just build a brand new one.
One of my blogging friends recommended Smart Tiles. They are a peel and stick tile, and pretty dang amazing! I was not familiar with them and found out that they are in most Home Depot stores. I headed over to check them out. I wanted to make sure that they did not look like wall paper with some texture. I was so excited when I saw them in the store, they had a lot of options, colors, and textures. They also looked and felt very much like a tile surface. However, the store did not have what I was hoping for.
Before you start using the smart tiles make sure the surface is clean, wiped down, and flat. Because my faux brick was actually flat I was ok. To begin I used a razor to cut one end of the tile flat. This allows the edge to be flush to the side of the fireplace.
To have them meet together the other side needs to be cut as well. The extra grout side needs to be shaped in the same way, to have the edges interlock. I did this by using two tiles.
Using a razor and running it along the already cut piece. I set the non cut piece on the bottom and the ready for interlocking piece on top. Running the razor along the cut edge.
Then, are you ready for the crazy simple way of using these? This is so easy, not the blogger “easy” where I show you 10,000 cuts, with really complicated tools all with my hair done pretty and full makeup on. This is legit, simple, anyone can do it.
This took my breath away as I was working on it. I became a really needy child here and wanted to get it done. I had zero patience for anything but seeing the completed project. The process of tiling took about two hours from start to finish. Not bad at all. If I had tiled it the standard way this would have been a all weekend project. We are not virgin tilers, we have been around the block. But this would have still taken a while. This was a no mess way of tiling and I love it!
Time to style this up! I adore a nicely done fireplace and seating area. Our bedroom is going over a big time overhaul so I cannot show you wide shots. It involved laundry, a dirty and paper cluttered desk, a half-painted shelf, and half painted walls. I was so eager to get this out before the room is done I could not wait.