Rate This Remodel: Three Fireplaces in Three Cities

With winter supposedly coming our way, thoughts may turn to fireplace upgrades. Here are three fireplace remodels readers have been kind enough to share with me. I’d like to know which is your favorite, based on all criteria, including cost.

1. Craftsman: The top left fireplace is in San Diego, and the owner tells me it cost $2,600, which included expert craftsmanship from a talented friend. What a transformation from the original faux stone fireplace, top right, we’ve all seen too many of.

2. Rock: The Corona fireplace, middle right, was a DIY (with neighborly help) upgrade with river rock that cost less than $1,000. This river rock is really gorgeous. I’m sure it looks even better with a quarter cord of firewood stacked to the left. The before photo, bottom right, shows that it was impossibly sterile.

3. White: The owner of this Reseda fireplace, bottom left, says it’s a “woman’s fireplace,” with the white paint, shuttered mirror and places for trinkets, photos and mementos. The before photo to its right shows 1970s wood and mirrored slats. The redo cost $700.

Want to share your remodel? Send before and after images to me, along with a few paragraphs explaining the project, including the cost. We’d love to see your masterpiece!

3 Comments on Rate This Remodel: Three Fireplaces in Three Cities

  1. sheila

    for me, fire is a celebration of a raw, elemental phenomenon, so is usually best framed by other raw, natural elements, so i voted stone.

  2. Jeannie

    The craftsman is by far the best looking fire place, and well worth the money. The socalled “woman’s” fireplace is the most improved for the money, but is to “cute” and to busy. The stone is a disaster at any price. I would hate to be sitting in front of it in the middle of an earthquake.

  3. BAM

    I voted for the craftsman fireplace over the river rock fireplace because I like the built in cabinets of the craftsman and I didn’t like the way the river rock appeared to be hovering without visible support above the mantle on the left of the fireplace. I think it was a mistake to keep the modern shape of the built-in niche in this case.
    The redo of the 70s era fireplace with diagonal mirrors probably would have ranked higher without the mirror and gewgaws. I think it had nice clean lines, but I was distracted by all the dustables.