There used to be a very imposing and completely inappropriate fire place in the living room of our little lincolnshire house. I have always hated it.
It has long been the source of discussion and apart from being architecturally wrong for the period of the house, the size is too grand for a house with such tiny proportions.
A particular picture from a magazine page has been gracing our notice board for a long time by way of inspiration and finally it came into it’s own.
We set about tackling the beast in the may bank holiday weekend in 2013! We carried on over our september holiday (which is our only real holiday of the year!) working into the night most days and finally got everything back into shape ready for christmas.
It had taken us a day to strip out the entire fire, hearth and mantle surround (in tact too). I popped it on ebay to raise a few extra pounds to pay for the materials (now restored and in a local shop). Then we spent a day preparing the space for a new hearth plinth of slate tiles.
The plastering (husband has good skills but kept this one hidden) took up the Monday by the end of which the plaster was the only sign left of where the old surround had been.
It’s quite satisfying stripping something like this out and revealing what is behind. We weren’t sure how wide the fire opening would be or if the brickwork would be in good order.
Imagine our delight when a nice wide opening with a lintel and good brickwork revealed itself and all in tact.
Even with the fireplace out and the brickwork exposed with no new wood burner, the improvement was immense and we couldn’t have been happier.
We picked out the wood burner we wanted and booked the installation for later in the summer.
Eventually the day came and we got the wood burning stove fitted and someone couldn’t wait to get that bad boy fired up and it was barely dry from the installation.
This long awaited change also meant we could start the very long over due decorating. No great shakes; just a spruce up as it was starting to look tired and sooty from the old fire.
The biggest change would be painting out the timber skirtings, cills and door surrounds which I particularly hated.
That just leaves the rest of the house to do now and the decoration has made the other areas look REALLY shabby. Forth Bridge comes to mind!