The journey of a fireplace mantle #beachcres

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Sometimes the cool things we get to design ("get to", meaning "not entitled to" but rather the glorious recipient of cool ideas) never make it off the design boards. We go through iterations and layering to create that customized look. There are situations where the best of ideas are chopped because of budget, timing, or even material selection. I always say that design is a negotiation of all those things. As the design developed for our Beach Crescent project, we (client and I) found ourselves adding on, adding this, putting in more marble, and then the mantle came into the picture. What most clients do not understand is that the mantle's size, clearance, and overhang are all dictated by the fireplace box and those clearances become a part of what the building inspector confirms in order to issue an occupancy permit.

So with this look, we first sketched out the initial concept. Something pretty geometric but it wasn't quite in tune. In the second iteration, we blew out the dining area (in the navy) by adding a whole built-in servery area. Here we added the double-helix-like custom doors with glass and interior lighting. But still, the mantle wasn't going to fit with the new fireplace box so onto Mantle #3, then settling for a more clean and simple Mantle #4.

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So here we are at the material board, and BAMB! That's hot. So. Much. Marble. See, we do traditional too, and love it, but just to show context and finishes of what we're working with.

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The bigger picture here is that sometimes design plans change over a period of time - and we have to accept that because we're going through a process of finding design solutions.