Help! Ugly load-bearing beam driving me nuts.
We have the UGLIEST load bearing beam in our house, and after 3 years of staring at it, pondering it, and cursing it, I still haven't gotten any closer to a solution. We are working through a total kitchen remodel, and this beam is now standing in the way of our progress. I consulted a couple of contractors, and they both agreed that the beam can't be removed without some pretty serious work on the roof structures, which will cost quite a bit. That kind of thing is outside of our budget right now. So, I am hoping to hear some ideas about how to mask it, or at least make it less of an eyesore. It is awful! On one end, it sits right over the top of our main entry door, so that when you walk in the door, you feel as if you will be cut in half should it fall. On the other end, it stops about 12" into the hallway, on the OUTSIDE of the hallway wall. Oh, and the beam is made of glued-together 1-by strips, with wood glue oozing out between the strips. It is pretty much the nastiest, cheapest, ugliest job a person could do. HELP!!!
In this photo, you can see how the beam is located between the kitchen and the living room area: https://www.facebook.com/photo...4127816&l=cd6003e7ff
And in this photo, you can just barely see how the beam ends in the hallway, if you look at the top of the right-hand wall in the hallway. The beam just sits there, protruding about 12" into the hallway. It is just terrible! https://www.facebook.com/photo...5847859&l=5dff8804e7
What can I do with this?