May 8, 2012

Who Needs a Fireplace?

My husband is for lots of reasons.  Here's the latest one to add to the list.

I wanted a way to make the piano the focal point of the room and to downplay the big 'ol TV that lives on a bookcase right next to it.  I was totally stumped about how this would work.  I even considered mounting the TV above the piano, but figured that it'd look a little strange.  Plus it'd be harder to see the TV on the wall than where it was living on the low bookshelf.  So I turned to my usual source for inspiration, Pinterest, and found this:

A DIY mantel!  Not above a fireplace, but just hanging on a wall.  Just because.  The more I thought about it, and the more I drew sketches of what it might look like, the more I wanted one to put above the piano!  I especially wished for one during the holiday season.  I would have liked to decorate one of those bad boys to the hilt.  You can totally picture it.

Desperately seeking mantel.

I showed Steve, and asked if it was possible.  He thought he could make one.  Fast forward about three months and he finally did!  I left him alone in the garage with saws and wood glue and pin-nailers, went out to mow the lawn, and the thing was hung an hour later.  I came in to see this:

It looks commanding in poor lighting, yes?

I can't wait to stain and paint it!  I am planning to finish it very similar to the inspiration picture.  Again, Pinterest is amazing- copy other people's awesome stuff, no rocket science involved.  I am also itching to get some under-cabinet lighting going on here in lieu of a traditional music lamp.

Large and in charge.
I also like that it carries your eye up.  My piano has a lot of sentimental value, but it's definitely stuck in the 80s.  The mantel gives the illusion that the piano is less compact- taller and more squared.  I am wondering if I'd be able to put anything else on top of the piano but below the mantel.  I have a giant box of silk greenery that's languishing in the spare bedroom... maybe I'll give that a try and see how it looks.

Seriously, this girl needs to learn better lighting technique.

See the trim details along the top and bottom?  Love it.  It totally amazes me that Steve did this in an hour or so.  Amazes me further that it cost us about $30 for the wood, and these things typically sell for around $100.  Steve told me that it didn't turn out exactly as he had intended; he ended up improvising for the corners on the upper trim.  I asked him how he knows how to do this kind of stuff.  He explained it was like playing with Legos, except he gets to build the Legos as he goes.  Still blows my mind.  Still so thankful for a hubs who is so handy and has drunk the decorating Kool-Aid with me.

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