The Hearth Shelves
The more I looked at the fire place hearth in this
room, the more I wanted to do something with it.
What I thought of at first was to place some
cushions on top of the brick on both sides of the
The brick is not smooth on top and without cushions
you can only sit on it a few minutes before your
butt hurts. You would have to move the
cushions before you lit a fire.
Then I thought about the storage space in this room.
Other than the furniture, there is none. So I
thought about buying some shelving and mounting it
to the wall on top of the hearth. Again, I
looked all over the web for some photos of someone
else who placed shelves on top of a brick fire place
hearth. You guessed it...nada. I am beginning to
think I am the only one in the world with wacky
I thought of the advantages of doing this.
Added storage, shelves to place lighting on to take
advantage of the two electrical outlets, hide the
electrical box. Disadvantages? Could not think
I looked for some inexpensive ready made shelves or
cabinets that would fill the space on both sides of
the fireplace. I could not find anything that
Again, I went with the only option. Custom make
the shelves I wanted myself. Now that I had my
awesome table saw, I could create what I
Downstairs den (aka former man cave) fireplace wall.
For the design phase of any project, I use the
computer graphics program called CorelDraw. A
software program I have used for a couple of decades
for my work. I basically import a photo of the
area I want to work with and digitally "draw" on top
of the photo working out my design idea. When
I like what I see, I do the physical measurements
and then create the drawings to scale to figure out
the size of wood I will need and the cuts.
Unfortunately, I do not have any
photos of the different stages of the project. My
apologies. I sometimes get so involved in the making
of something, I forget to pause and take photos.
What you see above is the finished project.
The two shelf units look like they are evenly sized
in the photo but the shelf unit on the right is
slightly wider. And yes, they are just sitting on
top of the hearth.
I bought 3/4" inch plywood to make the frames and
shelves. All of the shelves are removable except for
the shelves above the lower cabinets which are fixed
and help stabilize the shelves. The shelves
are completely open on the back and are anchored to
the back and side walls.
The cabinet doors are made from 1/2" plywood scraps
I had. The bottom cabinet doors are actually 2
pieces of wood glued together to form one large
piece. The beadboard wallpaper I used on the walls
was used on the inside of the cabinet doors and on
the outside to match the walls in the room.
I placed moulding between the shelves and the wall
to give it more of a built-in look. Each shelf
has an electrical outlet. I plan to eventually place
a flat screen TV on the left shelf unit.
Remember the electrical box? It is now hidden in the
tall cabinet section to the right of the light (see
photo below). That is why there are no shelves
in this section in there to block
I now have lots of storage place
and did not take up any floor space in the process.
Remember how this wall looked
But now that I have more
storage space, I craved more. MORE STORAGE!
See the closet I
built in this room...