Ideas for Fixing this Fireplace?

Ideas for Fixing this Fireplace?

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Regina Yunghans
Nov 17, 2014
(Image credit: Jess)

Q: I have a corner fireplace mantle in my new place which is not original, but unusual/antique and I would like to figure out how to fix the "rehab" flaws that have befallen it. The issues: the mantle, which has a partial bad refinishing job stopped midway by the previous owner.

The detail of the monster face on the right has been sanded away, is about 8-10" higher than the original creating a massive amount of tile fill between the fireplace and the mantle. Obviously, it also has a poorly done and frankly ugly subway tile job which I can literally pull off with my fingers. Finally, as a corner fireplace in a living room with no wall space due to door openings, windows, doors or a combination on all four walls, this is the only place to put a TV in the entire living room. It's like we need barcaloungers to watch it comfortably.

So what to do? I've had visitors suggest cutting off the bottom "feet" of the bottom 5 inches of mantle, as its antique value has been ruined and it will solve the entire issue. But barring that (which isn't a piece of cake), what to do with the bad subway tile? Should we add a piece of wood to the bottom of the mantle or visual make the top of the firebox look larger? Help.

(Image credit: Jess)
(Image credit: Jess)
(Image credit: Jess)

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