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5/28/2014 6:14:43 PM

Gas Fireplace Trim

When you move into a place (or at least when I do), the second that furniture hits the floor of a room it seems that all forms of home improvement for that room come to a screeching halt.  And that is why painting, window trim, and trim around the gas fireplace were not done in our master bedroom for almost five years despite knowing we wanted to paint, etc.

A couple months ago I got the room finally painted a light refreshing green instead of the lack-luster khaki-brown.  It opened the room and gives a great refreshing feeling every morning and a soothing feeling every night.



With that progress made, next came the window trim to fill the gaps between the windows and drywall.  And while that was great progress, I just couldn't stop there with only one item left on the list for the master bedroom.  (Ignoring the doors and door trim that will need to be painted all over the house and is therefore a whole different project list.)

So today I tackled the gas fireplace trim.  Which is another of those "What were they thinking?" things about the house.  Really... who just installs a nice gas fireplace and then says "Who cares about the gaps around the thing... it's there."

Yep... it's there.  But the gaps around it have been slowly driving me crazy (or crazier) since we moved in.

And while I might do something better with a smoother surface at a later date, I decided that at least for now it is another job for those fun slat boards that I have a small pile of. 

Picking four that are in decent shape is getting harder and harder, but I found enough this time and sanded them very smooth on one side and the edges.


And here is the thing about sanding... they always say you have to sand in steps with increasingly finer grit.  However, someone telling me something never sits well unless they can back it up with a good reason.  And while I have read that it saves time in the end, it is somewhat hard to believe that swapping out three grades of sand paper would be easier and quicker than just using the fine grade to start with.

However, while doing the sanding, I came up with an analogy that might help people like me understand why it really is quicker and easier... Ligthbulb

Think of shaving someone's head who has long hair.  Sure, you could go at it with a razor for hours shaving off a tiny section of hair at a time.  But... if you cut off the majority with scissors, then use a electric buzzer to cut that down pretty close, then you can quickly shave off the rest with a razor.  With three steps it really can be easier and take less time.  It is the same with sanding wood... just imagine you are looking through a magnifying glass at it and all those little fibers sticking up are someone's hair.

Okay... maybe I was out in the sun too long today.  Silly

In any case, I sanded the boards down super smooth, then cut them to length and sanded the ends.  Then I used the scraps to test all the stains I have on them to see what would match our bedroom furniture and look good with the fireplace, and then still decided to go with black.  Though the test pieces will help for other projects that I might need to have stain samples for.

While checking out what would look best, stain or paint, I also decided to clean up the tiny paint speckling that was on a lot of the metal from painting the wall (mostly from the previous owners).  It took a "magic eraser" to get it scrubbed off, but looks much better now.


And then here is where I would have done differently if I knew the future.  I would have gotten a black spray enamel instead of using the brush-on because it would have given a very smooth surface.  As it was, the paint was drying in the heat much too fast and I ended up with more brush-strokes on the wood than I would have liked.  But hind-sight and all that.

In any case, I think it still turned out decent and is definitely better than gaping holes.

So that wraps up pretty much all the current projects for the master bedroom... now I can get on to the rest of the house.  Scared

          5/27/2014 5:03:33 PM - How to Fill Big Gaps in Window Casing

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