Beach Cottage Vintage Fireplace Surround Makeover Before After

Wed 4th, Dec, 2013

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Well here we are, a beach cottage makeover, a before / after on an old piece of furniture…I love to do this, the painting of furniture and the subsequent power of paint…there is something very magical about transforming something and saving it from landfill.

This fireplace surround came from an old Australian semi built about 100 or so years ago, though I am more than sure that this isn’t that old, but it’s nice and what’s very nice to me is that I saved this from being stuffed into our earth……even if it means that I get strange looks from the parents of my children’s friends when they come here to pick up their offspring and ask if 1. we are moving because there are old vintage ladders around or 2. why is there a fireplace leaning perilously on the deck?

I worry not at these questions, these strange looks and comfort myself in the fact that I could be spending my money on designer handbags….at least that is what I tell my husband….


I am also practically foaming at the mouth at the escapades to be had in my new hobby…

…that would be the wild, wonderful and oh so delicious and up until now out of my reach, sport of mantelsaping…


….strap yourselves in ladies and gentleman of beach cottage land, there has been the foofing of blue vintage mason jars, there has been the stroking of vintage doors, there have been shutters scooped up from strange places…there have been old chairs in the sea and the painting of one’s bedroom floor, on one’s hands and knees, with white paint…

but you ain’t seen nothing yet girlfriends..

welcome to mantelscaping, beach cottage style ;-)

…the Christmas edition will be broadcast to a screen near you very soon…






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20 Responses to “Beach Cottage Vintage Fireplace Surround Makeover Before After”

  1. Mandy Parker says:

    Sara, you, very simply, brightened this very dull mizzly British morning, as you so often do, with your beautiful pictures, and brilliant way with words. Love the new project x

    • sarah says:

      thanks so much Mandy, very nice of you – I’ve been on the phone to england yesterday and am hearing your weather is chilly and dull :-)

  2. Leisa says:

    Wonderful again! I love it. Sitting here looking out onto my deck and wondering what I cando out there…

    • sarah says:

      thanks Leisa, I wasn’t sure about it on the deck, I think it depends on the area – I am going to do something with the bit where the fire should be too, not sure what yet! xx

  3. Selby says:

    Looks great:) I can just imagine the pretty things you’ll adorn this with.
    Love the colour too- wouldn’t have thought of it but it’s really soft & pretty.

  4. Jenny McAteer says:

    Hi Sarah, wow that looks amazing, I would never have thought to place a fire mantel on an outside deck. Its got me thinking about ideas for decorating our new outdoor area which was finished on monday and then the rain came on Monday night and it has not stopped since then, so plenty of time to dream up ideas.Thanks for the inspiration, you always manage to pull something amazing out of the bag.

    • sarah says:

      thanks Jenny, I’m not sure if it will stay here, I wanted it inside but there is only one place really that it will fit…. xx

  5. merilyn says:

    I just did a little squeal! ab fab sarah!
    right up my alley for foofing excitement! … whatever do people do if they don’t foof is beyond my ken! I guess they get bored and that word doesn’t exist for me! … “magical child” archetypes lol m:)x

  6. bec says:

    just so beautiful….but should that basket not be filled with firewood or pinecones??? :)
    Bec x

    • sarah says:

      yes it should, I did believe that was going a bit over the top though when I was foofing it was over 30C and I was wearing shorts! :-)

  7. Julie Johnson says:

    Beautiful as always. Love the fireplace mantel. I’d love to find one to fix up myself.

  8. andrea frost says:

    Yeah Sarah….I totally LOVE this…
    perfect colour…
    fab decor on its ledge…
    well done again Young Lass!~~

    xx andrea

  9. Anonymous says:

    It looks fabulous.

  10. lizzie says:

    Hi Sarah, What I did on my fireplace surround where the fire would be is put a thin sheet of ply (on the back) and painted it with chalk board paint. Then you can be creative and chalk in messages, or some logs and a fire. Lizzie

  11. mel says:

    Love the colour Sarah, it’s perfect! Love that you’re so happy about styling and foofing with it too. Such a great find :)

  12. sunny says:

    The mantel looks awesome now that it has its BC white paint! I just *knew* you’d be doing mantel-scaping for us [tho I expected Xmassy? Will you hang Xmas stockings? Perhaps grey and white stripe stockings?]. And your pink hydrangea is so beautiful, what a perfect shade of pink.

    Would a chippy old piece of mirror look good in the fire space?


  13. Lisa Mckenzie says:

    I think your mantel looks beautiful and i would not worry about strange looks from parents of kiddos either that is just how i am x

  14. Mary says:

    Ah, it looks like it could’ve come out of our place, though our 1926 dining room mantlepiece is a bit more “arts and crafts”. Just realised how fortunate I am to have two mantelpieces in this home, one with a working fireplace (about to be filled with pinecones) and the other in the kitchen where the stove lives! I should get on with some quick Christmas foofing around these two parts of my home!