Anyone can have a fireplace for the holidays or year-round use by building a simulated one for any room.
flush spackling compound
paint or stain
The finished fireplace is made up of five components: the mantel, two side cabinets, a center fire box and the hearth. Each unit is secured using bolts with wing nuts or by resting on top of another.
1. The mantel, which consists of a top board trimmed with crown molding, is the first unit. Cut the mantel top to length, and then soften the edges slightly with a gentle sanding. Cut the front piece of crown molding to length and attach it using wood glue and finish nails underneath, inset from the edge so that it will fit over the two side sections that will be built later. Cut the two side pieces and install as above.
2. The next unit is the hearth, a rectangular box that's wider and longer that the mantel. Use a 1 x 12 for the top of the box and 1 x 4s for the sides. Cut two sides and two ends and attach those pieces to create the frame. Secure the top with wood glue and finish nails.
3. To assemble the two side cabinets, use a rectangular box design as with the hearth including a 1 x 6 front piece attached to a frame made out of 1 x 4s. Attach decorative trim along with a 1 x 2 to the inside edge of the cabinets, forming a groove. For the center section that makes up the faux fire box, attach a 1 x 3 to a 1 x 4 to create an L-shape for the legs of the fire box. Note: Be sure to space the decorative trim and 1 x 2 so the two side legs can slide into the slot and be held in place.
4. Secure the boxes to the hearth by drilling pilot holes through the bottom of the side pieces into the hearth, and then secure with bolts and wing nuts. The side panels can easily be removed and set inside the hearth box for storage.
5. The final piece for the center is a panel cut to the distance between the two side cabinets with a 1 x 2 attached to the bottom of the back. The panel slides into position and rests on top of the two legs. Attach decorative trim to the edge of the fireplace opening itself. Finally, secure the mantel to the main body using bolts and wing nuts.
6. Fill all the holes with flush spackling compound. Stain or paint as desired and let dry.