Was: Paneled ceiling/walls, Lava Rock FP, Now Lightened Up

GoosterOctober 6, 2013

I've been meaning to post a followup on my never-ending remodeling saga. The FR got an update when the kitchen got expanded earlier this year ( EIK Reveal Link). The EIK is traditional with a touch of Hollywood Regency, so the goal was to lighten up the FR and make it relate better to the rest of the house.

I noticed quite a few posts with 60s and 70s era FRs with paneling and rock walls. In our case, we had a 60s addition to a 1937 home that had paneling on the walls and ceiling when we first moved in. The paneling was not the nice stuff I see people are able to paint and adapt. There were also stained glass windows, parquet floors, an built-in green rug, and a wall of rock (mixed with lava rock). Here it was originally:

It was really, really dark:

In the first wave of remodeling, the paneling on the ceiling, the stained glass, the old bar top, the flooring and part of the rock came down. After living with that for years, during the latest remodeling frenzy we undertook, the wall paneling came down, the trim painted out, and the fireplace wall was torn out. The fireplace went from a wall of rock to a pile of bricks.

The new fireplace and built-in entertainment area are shown below. The built-ins are custom inset cabinets, built to match the Crystal Cabinets in the kitchen (too much on-site customization was needed to use the same brand, no matter how much they could customize the pieces off-site). The two grills in front lower corners are speaker cabinets. The left most X cabinet holds the stereo equipment. The FP tile is a beveled arabesque with a relief (Ken Mason Tile) that I loved and wanted to use somewhere in the home. The hearth is some leftover squares from when we redid the entryways during the half-step remodel. The style of paneling, inset cabinets and bookcases mimic the original built-ins in the formal LR (Covered in this thread ). The cabinets may get lighted; they are wired for it. The TV is 60" on a swivel extension mount; the opening can hold a 65".

Closeup of FP tile:

View in the other direction --- I still need to buy art and a mirror for this room. I've been looking for some locally sourced art.

One final shot, with others in the photobucket archive:

I've shown a few shots before, but since this seems like it will take forever to get finished with all the details, I thought I post and ask for some advice on finishing details and other changes. I'd eventually like to replace the bar stools, the sectional and get a new chest for near the bar And, as I mentioned, I need some wall decor. I especially need ideas on what to do above the fireplace, behind the bar, and alternative ways to place the room.

This post was edited by gooster on Thu, Nov 7, 13 at 0:11

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Wow!!! So pretty what a transformation! Enjoy Your lovely work!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 10:19PM
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Holly- Kay

It's beautiful Gooster!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 10:24PM
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So light and welcoming now. I love it!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 10:55PM
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Very nice transformation!!!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 1:24AM
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It looks wonderful, love those green chairs.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 2:42AM
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It's so bright in there now, what type of lighting did you install?

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 5:37AM
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Now that is a transformation!!! Looks amazing!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 6:48AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Wow! What imagination to see what the before could become. Great job!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 7:33AM
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Hard to believe that is the same room. I bet you just love to sit in there now. Congratulations on a job well done. Your space is fabulous. Good luck on finding art and accent pieces.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 12:10PM
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Thanks so much for the positive feedback! I wanted to post this because I know there have been numerous posts about paneling and large rock fireplaces. It is also not 100% done and I'm seeing if there are other ideas on finishing details.

I also forgot to add that my GC redid the trim in the room to match the rest of the house and the built-ins now are in a similar style to the original LR (where I'm seeking ideas in another thread). The lighting was expanded, windows enlarged/replaced, drywall added, dry rot repaired, new switches added (including one by the garage entrance), and the electrical replaced. The overall goal was to blend it better with the rest of the house. Some compromises were made. We actually investigated raising the floors and raising the roof -- way too expensive. Also, matching the flooring on the slab foundation to the wood is not in the cards for now.

snookums2: the overhead lights are 6" LEDs (Ecosmart) on a dimmer -- they provide very generous ambient lighting. Plus there are wall sconces and lamps to vary the lighting depending on the situation. The cans are not used during tv viewing. There are some challenges with the large trees cutting down on natural light.

anneD: can't take credit for vision; had to live in it for a long time in the "1st wave reno" stage and then completed the last transformation in two stages. When it was first purchased long ago, the room scared away potential buyers, the listing agent said.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 2:47PM
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I usually try to figure out a way to work with existing features ... but that fireplace had no redeeming features

Sometimes the best design tool REALLY is a wrecking bar.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 3:32PM
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It went from a depressing dungeon to a bright and happy room. Well done!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 4:19PM
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Wow what an amazing transformation I love it! Can I ask you how big your seating area is there with the firepalce, sectional, chairs etc. It looks similar (at least in my head to what I am working with and I am just curious because it is such a lovely room.

I would get some sort of large print or painting that could fit in that niche above the fireplace. I love going to our semi annual "Arts Walks" to browse what local artists have to offer. Etsy is another fun site to get lost in. You might even be able to "commission" something if you have something in mind and don't see anything you like.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 5:58PM
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Nice work! Love the built-in wall.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 6:20PM
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WOW! What an inviting space for family and friends whereas before it was so dark and dreary. Great Job!!!!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 10:38PM
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what a difference! I love the arabesque tile on the fireplace.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2013 at 12:14AM
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Thanks again to you all for the encouragement.

lazygardens: the first attempt at remodeling was a quarter step that aimed to work with the existing elements. The dark lava rocks even received a paint wash in an effort to lighten them up. When the kitchen was redone, getting rid of the fireplace was a high priority. The jackhammers came out, and over a ton of rock came down. This was not nice thin veneer.

kam76: the fireplace wall is about 15' 4" long. The entire seating area is about 13'6" away from the fireplace wall, and the back of the green chairs are 17' away from the opposite wall. Behind the sofa is a four foot aisle plus a console -- it is the main pathway to the garage and the rest of the home. The main seating area "floats" and is working pretty well.. The aisle between the green chairs and the 11 foot long bar (an original feature that was dressed up with granite, paint and new moldings) is a bit tight but is not a major traffic path. The TV is a 60" flat panel on a tilting and rotating mount, but can be pushed back when the crowed is smaller. I am hoping the size of the TV is balanced by the fireplace and the cabinetry. You can see more pics in the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: FR Photo Bucket

This post was edited by gooster on Tue, Oct 8, 13 at 2:28

    Bookmark   October 8, 2013 at 2:25AM
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I like the reno. I normally don't mind paneling in FR's, but yours was very dark and not cozy. Now it looks so much more inviting.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2013 at 7:29AM
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I hadn't seen this before. What an amazing transformation. Lovely room. I need to go take a look at the LR. I love your kitchen, I remember that.
So how are you coming on your art?
My husband and I have been collecting artwork over the last 15 years we've known each other and the 12 years of our marriage. Mostly it's an organic thing - we don't go looking for art for a particular wall. We've found almost all our most treasured best pieces when we've been on vacations. I guess since we tend to go to places where there are great galleries, we like walking through galleries, and on vacay we're relaxed and not "on a mission to find the right piece".
You obviously have patience, so I'm going to suggest carrying the measurements for the spaces you want to fill, and digital pics of the spaces, and being open to walking into galleries when you happen on them.
IMHO if you go looking for a piece to match your decorating it'll look like a decorator piece.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 8:30AM
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Love, love, LOVE this! That fireplace tile is swoon-worthy...

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 8:38AM
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mlweaving_Marji: The LR/DR (and the FR) remains a work in progress. I was actually going to post an update and look for ideas. The art search also continues. Like you, we like to pick up pieces when we travel. It is supplemented with stuff from local galleries and even a few vintage finds (old maps, old paintings, etc). That's a great suggestion to carry the dimensions of the spaces -- I'll go load the phone. We just went to Italy and found a piece or two -- the challenge always is hauling or shipping the larger stuff back.

AngelCowgirl: Thanks. The tile was a "gotta have it" when searching for the kitchen BS. It turned out great as a FP surround.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 12:19PM
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Spectacular!!!! Hard to believe it's the same room!!!!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 4:17PM
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Wow, what a beautiful transformation!

I love that leather chair! Would you mind telling me the brand? I have been looking for one for a while.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 6:16PM
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Love seeing nice, mind-blowing renovations like yours, Gooster! Looks terrific!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 8:11PM
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I've been looking for fireplace tile and I don't know why it never occurred to me to use white. What a gorgeous tile! Can you tell me the name of it?

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 11:14PM
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thanks catmom, marrilyn, outsideplaying, msrose. Slowly additional details are falling into play -- maybe by T-day.

marrilyn: the chair is from Sam Moore, but it is an old piece. When we lived with the paneling we went "went big" with the lodge-y / club look. I think it predates the day when PB started marketing similar french club chairs.

msrose: the tile is Arabia in Gloss White in the South Beach line from Ken Mason Tile. White is a risk for a fireplace, but we're not in a climate that supports a lot of fp use.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 11:46PM
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Oh my!!! I would never guess that was the same room! What an amazing transformation. It is so elegant. What a great job you did!!!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 7:26AM
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Your room is one of the best transformations that I have ever seen! Absolutely gorgeous. :)

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 10:01PM
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It looks fantastic!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 10:12PM
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Just wonderful! I would love to take a jackhammer to mine.

The end result is just really lovely!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 11:36PM
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Holy Shamoley! That's fabulous! I really love the way you mixed the colors and patterns. It gives the eye so many great spots to rest on.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 7:14AM
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Wow, thanks so much, all! We lived so long in the partial remodel we got so used to rock walls and cherry paneling (and furniture to match).

edeevee: it was a challenge to combine all the old furniture without buying too much new (two chairs). We ended up with a lot of warm undertones (derived from the paneling) that we had to try to blend with some grey ones (from the rest of the house).

kiki_thinking: I think your wall will turn out just fine. We did a little paint washing on the most offensive rocks, but we also had lava rock in the mix that there was no other fix for.

It was messy and cost a whole lot more than expected to fix that wall of rock. After tear down, we were left with a pile of bricks.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 3:04PM
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Wow!!!! Now that is a transformation!!! Gorgeous!!

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:32AM
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Great job! Well my fireplace is ten times uglier than your original. I was thinking of keeping the stone lower half...but now I'm not so sure. I'll have to show husband this transformation.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 9:29AM
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Thanks arktillery, jterrilynn.

jterrilynn: I recall your fireplace from the drum shade thread. We proceeded in two phases; the rock extended all the way along the south wall at one point. If you do not like your rock, it would be better just to get rid of it all at once, since you will have a contractor, drywall people and other trades.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 12:22PM
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I thought Lava Lamp when I read Lava Rock - now that would be something to out-60 the 60s - a giant Lava fireplace with red bubbles rising like jellyfish in an aquarium.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 1:01PM
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