White Wash Faux Mantle

About a year ago my boyfriend and I decided to purchase a fixer upper. I don’t think either one of us really knew or were prepared for what we were getting ourselves into. Looking back to where we began and how far we have come today has made everything worth it (even if there were days I might not have admitted to it).

Anyway, I’m going to show one of the projects we completed that I was dying to sink my hands into since the first time I stepped foot in the house. Right smack in the middle of the living is a wooden wall up to the ceiling completed with a mantle. I could tell there used to be a wood burning stove by the marks on the floor but it has since been removed and we were left with a ugly wooden décor and a non-existent fireplace.

At first I couldn’t wait to rip it out and just have a normal wall. After we started settling in and did a little decorating I had a change of heart. I kind of liked the cozy feel to it and thought maybe it just needed a little face-lift.

First, we sanded the entire wall. It sanded down perfectly and the wood was actually a lot nicer than we expected. Next, we went over it a second time with a fine sand paper to get a smooth texture. Here is what it looked like after all the sanding.

This is what it looked like after sanding.

I picked up Miniwax wood finish stain in the color classic gray. We did two coats of stain. In between each coat, we allowed about a 20 minute drying time and wiped the surface down with an old (clean) t-shirt. This is what we were left with but I wasn’t quite satisfied yet.

Minwax 227614444 Wood Finish Penetrating Interior Wood Stain, 1/2 pint, Classic Gray

I love the look of white wash and I already had that sort of theme in other décor around the house so I thought why not. I had some white matte paint lying around and I continued on. The type of paint I used was Rust-Oleum Chalked White Matte. This part gets a little tricky. I did a “dry brush” technique to achieve the look I was going for. I just barely dip the brush in the paint and sweep it over the surface without pressing to hard. You want to try and spread just a little paint as far as it can go before dipping it back in the paint. I love this technique because you don’t have to be perfect. In this case, imperfection is what I was trying to achieve.

Rust-Oleum 285140 Ultra Matte Interior Chalked Paint 30 oz, Linen White

So now you can see the final outcome. We are so happy with the way it turned out! Our living room seems so much brighter and inviting.  One day I would like to go back and add an actual fireplace and maybe spruce up the mantle a bit but that project will be for another day.

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