I’ve been thinking about how to proceed on building a mantel (almost spelled this wrong!) to go with the beautiful slate hearth Kelly installed for our upgraded living room.  After drawing up a number of sketches over the past couple of months, a few days ago I finally dove into building a base for the facade.  I still have to sell Kelly on the final vision.  In the process of getting full buy-in she and I came up with a great idea to build a removable wood flange around the fireplace removable metal flange.  The purpose being that the wood flange would serve as a transition from the permanent mantle: a transition that won’t impede access to moving the fireplace for servicing.  The basic idea is to make the brick go away.