When I started planning our built-ins and DIY fireplace, I knew I wanted a big chunky mantel. Originally the plan was to hide our tv components in a cabinet next to the fireplace, but once I decided to let the fireplace stand alone, I had to come up with another design. Because the mantel was going to be chunky, I thought it would be perfect to hold all the stuff. Here’s the simple tutorial for a DIY fireplace mantel with storage. (post contains affiliate links, see disclosure)
This project is pretty easy, you’ve just got to make sure your measurements are exact (something I’m not particularly good at, but getting better). And just like with my fireplace, these measurements are based on my design and the needs of our home. But the concept is all the same and measurements can be adjusted for your project.
- (2) 1x16x8 project board
- (2) 1x6x8 common board
- table saw or circular saw
- Kreg Jig
- Kreg Jig screws
- flip down hinges
- wood filler
- orbital sander
- staining pad
- stain color of choice – I used my favorite stain
- Cut both 1×16 project boards to the desired length, mine is at 65 1/2 inches. Remember to calculate the total width with the side pieces.
- Cut a 1×6 to the desired length to create the boards on each side, mine are cut at 16 inches, the same depth of the top and bottom project boards.
- Cut the front piece of the mantel, the edge that folds down, to the desired length – mine is cut at 67 inches.
- Using the Kreg Jig, start attaching all four sides of the “box” together not including the front. If desired, add extra pieces in the center as dividers and extra support.
- Attach hinges to the front piece and inside to create the flip-down front.
- Use wood filler to fill the seams at the top and bottom, then sand and stain.
I chose to attach the top and bottom pieces on the inside of each side piece so that there were no seams when looking at it completed. I also did the same thing with the front. When looking at it from the front, you can only see one large piece and none of the side edges. This way it looks cleaner and the storage is more hidden. At the corners, mitered edges would have looked even better, but I don’t think my skill level is there yet.
Using the 16-inch project boards also made this DIY a lot easier. They are the perfect depth and made to be stained or painted. You could also do this project by attaching multiple boards together to create a top and bottom, but I thought the project board was best.
All of our tv components and wires are hidden in the mantel and behind the wall. You wouldn’t even know it was all there! The hinges are 90-degree hinges, so they are also hidden when the front is closed. Luckily, we don’t have to open the mantel very much so everything stays dust free and hidden away.
Overall, I’m super happy with how all of these projects turned out. From the built-ins to the fireplace, and now the DIY fireplace mantel with storage. They are a major improvement to our home and added the character that our builder-grade home needed. I would definitely do a big project like this again!
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