Weekend Projects: Extending the Space Above the Fireplace Mantel

Make your fireplace the focal point of your room by extending the space above the mantel. It will take less than a weekend and cost less than $100 in materials.

Related To:


The fireplace extension is taken up to the ceiling then adorned with scroll artwork.

The fireplace extension is taken up to the ceiling then adorned with scroll artwork.

Tools and Materials:

3/4” medium-density fiberboard (MDF)
wooden medallion
circular saw
jig saw
miter saw
tape measure
primer and paint
screw gun and wood screws
wood glue
nail gun and nails
wood filler and putty


1. Draw a diagram of your design. We built our extension just slightly narrower than the mantel with a two-inch indentation on each side.

2. Transfer your design onto the MDF then use a circular saw to cut it out.


3. Trim out the MDF in molding. We used two different types of molding on our mantel extension. The first set molding was miter cut and laid on top of the MDF and secured with wood glue and nails.

4. The second set of molding is a flat piece that we affixed to the side of the MDF to give the mantel extension a clean profile. Use the same technique to cut and affix the second set of molding.

5. We’re putting a wooden medallion in the center of our mantel extension. To make it stand out, we’re outlining the medallion in the same molding that runs along the face of the extension. To do this, we cut down the molding on the miter saw using 45 degree cuts and attached it with glue and nails.


6. Apply a coat of primer and then paint. We also painted the space behind the medallion red to give it a little extra pop. Let the paint dry completely.

7. To mount the extension to the wall, fasten a couple strips scrap wood into the studs. Then screw through the extension into the wood.

8. Fill the screw holes with putty and touch up the paint.

Next Up

How to Clean Your Fireplace

Keep your fireplace tidy between uses with these tips for cleaning the firebox, glass doors and accessories.

How to Make a Cardboard Holiday Fireplace

Save those TV boxes from Black Friday and turn them into a charming fireplace for Christmas.

Easily Monogram Christmas Stockings With This No-Sew Cross Stitch Trick

Whether creating holiday heirlooms for your family or giving as a handmade gift, these personalized stockings look just like the hand-stitched version but come together much quicker and without needle and thread.

Outdoor Fireplace Design Ideas

Learn about the different options for outdoor fireplace designs.

How To Make a Rustic, Upcycled Headboard From a Wood Pallet

This easy DIY pallet headboard project costs about $20 to build and can be finished in just a few hours.

Goodbye Laundry, Hello DIY Costumes

Score points for the home team with these unique laundry basket costumes.

DIY Rainbow Headboard

This whimsical headboard is budget-friendly, renter-friendly and so incredibly cute.

How to Repair and Refinish Laminate Countertops

Learn how to repair scratches, gouges and chips; plus get the lowdown on paints and refinishing kits made to transform old countertops.

Make Your Desk Accessory Set

Use various containers like Mason jars, vases and tin cans to create a matching desk accessory set that will keep all your school essentials organized and within reach.

How to Wash Windows

Our favorite window washing technique includes a secret ingredient: vinegar! Learn how to clean your windows inside and out with this simple DIY solution.

Go Shopping

Refresh your home with stylish products handpicked by HGTV editors.


Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.