Nothing adds character to a room like a warm and inviting fireplace.
But if you don’t happen to live in a charming, old property, installing a new fireplace can be a real palaver. But how about a fake, temporary one instead?
Fake fireplaces have been all the rage on social media over Christmas, with clever parents using them to add a touch of festive luxury to their homes, and providing the perfect place to hang stockings.
Inspired by all the incredible creations she saw online, Jourdyn May Verrett, a mum-of-two and keen DIYer from Texas, decided to make her own – and she managed to do it for less than a fiver.
The 27-year-old created a beautiful fake fireplace for just $6 (£4.50) using cardboard boxes, paper towels and styrofoam cubes.
‘I’m currently remodelling and I’ve sold our living room furniture, so our TV has been sitting on an old pop-up table until I can buy a new TV stand,’ Jourdyn told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk. ‘That meant I was really limited on what I could do with holiday decorations this year.
‘I spent some time online searching for unique ways to hang stockings, and I came across a few really cool old posts on Facebook where people made fake fireplaces for Christmas pictures.
‘I was instantly obsessed with that idea and decided to make my own version.’
Jourdyn really needed to keep things cheap, so she tried to use only what she already had around the house.
‘The sides of my toddler’s playpen worked great to form the basic shape of a fireplace around the table,’ she says. ‘I cut four cardboard boxes down to size and secured them to the playpen with zip ties.
‘The mantle is made of styrofoam packaging cubes laid across the edge of the table, and held together with duct tape.
‘I used everything from rolled paper, poster board, paper towels, and duct tape to fill in any gaps and make the exterior shell as smooth and level as possible.
‘I also taped all the edges and corners together to keep the form secure.’
Jourdyn painted the inside of the fireplace black and tossed in a pile of gold ribbon scraps with a puck light to create a fake fire look.
‘I wrapped the fireplace in faux brick and wood-grain contact paper, which is basically sticky wrapping paper,’ she says. ‘It also has a slight bumpy texture to it, which I think helped the design look realistic.
‘I got really excited when I finally stepped back and realized it was actually starting to look like a fireplace. I finished it off with some Christmas décor.’
Jourdyn says she loves how it turned out, and it wasn’t nearly as complicated as she thought it would be.
‘I can’t believe how easy and beginner-friendly it was. I mostly love that it didn’t require much planning or money,’ she adds.
‘I had everything on hand except the contact paper, so the total cost was only about $6. It took about four hours of trial and error to complete.
‘Spending $500 or more on a solid piece of furniture just isn’t in the cards for us right now. Being able to turn just $6 into something so realistic and usable is something I’m very grateful and proud of.
Jourdyn is so pleased with the look of her faux fireplace that she’s considering keeping it far beyond Christmas.
She says: ‘I’m sure I’ll buy a real TV stand eventually. But until then, this fireplace has turned out to be an amazing alternative.’
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