DIY Custom Wood Mantle + Mounting a TV to Brick

Hi, friends! Long time, no see! Hopping back on to share my latest diy…I say “my” latest, but this one was all T Giles! Thankful for my guy who has been so interested in being a handy-man lately.

Here’s a quick snapshot of how the mantle looked before we touched it:

mantle before.jpg

Check out how we transformed our dated mantle (or mantel? not really sure the correct usage lol) to this stained wood, farmhouse look!

*For our German Schmear DIY, click this link —-> click me :)*

Wood Mantle

   *NOTE: we used the existing top piece of wood, so I only needed wood for a front piece + two sides. We have left the bottom open for now, but if you’d like a top and bottom piece, just buy two extra boards in the length of your front board minus 2in to account for the extra space the side pieces leave!*

Supplies: Shop all supplies in one place by clicking this link —-> click me 🙂

-Wood: I used a 1in x 10in x 8ft board from Lowes (linking home depot here, as option)

-My cuts were: IMG_7766

-1 1/2in Finishing nails

-Stain: I used Minwax stain in the finish “Provincial

Wood Putty in “Natural”

Tack Cloth, Gloves

Hammer, Chains, Crowbar, Chisel, etc for distressing

How To:

To begin, we removed the decorative molding around the old mantle. This left what looked like the photo below.


As mentioned above, we left the top piece of wood and built around it to create the mantle. After removing the trim, we headed to Lowes for wood. We determined the measurements for our cuts by measuring from one side of the existing top piece of wood to the other for the front piece, then measured the side of the top piece.

We knew the length for all would be 10in, so we didn’t need to make adjustments or cuts to the piece of wood we found. We were actually able to only use one piece of 8ft long wood. I wrote the measurements down on an index card + headed to Lowes.

Side note: Lowes will cut wood to your dimensions for you, for FREE!

After the wood was cut, we grabbed the stain, wood putty, and nails + headed home after a quick chick-fil-a stop lol #quarantinecuisine

Once home, we got right to work. We attached the side pieces first, so that the front piece (which is 2in longer than the existing top piece to account for the extra inch of length each new side piece would create) would cover the side pieces. We attached the sides  with five finishing nails each, and moved on to attaching the front.

I would recommend choosing the most distressed side of the wood to show on the front. For ours, one side had two dark spots on the wood, so we chose that to show! Same story for attaching the piece, just using about 10 nails instead of only 5.

After nailing the three pieces in, I covered each nail, and the seams where the pieces met, with a good amount of wood putty. This goes on pink but dries in natural wood color + will be sanded down later, so feel free to cover well. Here’s what the wood looked like with the putty, before the stain.

While the putty was drying, I began to distress the wood. I only used my hammer, as I couldn’t find chains around the house. The only posts I’ve read say chains work great, though! I tapped the edges every inch with the hammer…I tried to show how in the picture below. I added multiple “nicks” across the wood with the hammer, as well.

After letting the putty dry a bit more, I sanded each spot down + cleaned the wood off with my tack cloth after. I put on a pair of gloves + used an old t-shirt to apply one layer of stain. I made sure to lightly cover the wood, as I didn’t want the stain to be very dark.


I left the mantle to dry for four hours before decorating. All together, this project was a 1/10 on the difficulty scale. SO EASY + made such a difference in our space! Here’s a few spots of the final product:

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

Now on to discussing that beautiful brick mount!

Mounting a TV to Brick

Okayyy, so we were incredibly nervous about mounting our TV to brick. It was actually the one project I said I had to have done the first weekend we moved in, but the anxiety was too high to attempt. Looking back now, we both wish we would have had the courage to just go for it–mounting a TV to brick is sooooooo much easy than you think!

Supplies: Shop all supplies in one place by clicking this link —-> click me 🙂

Tilting TV Mount

Hammer Drill Bit: size 3/16

-1/4in x 1 1/4in Tapcon Concrete Anchor Screws

-Optional: Liquid Nails

How To:

To begin, we checked the back of our TV to see what size screws included in the mount that we would need. Ours were M6. We then purchased the mount from Walmart, one that was only $24 and included multiple screw sizes.

I also grabbed the drill bit and Tapcon Concrete Anchor screws while at Lowes for the mantle supplies. As a note: a hammer drill is recommended. We used our standard drill with the hammer head drill bit and it worked just fine! However, T says it would be a bit easier to drill into the brick with the use of a hammer drill. In all, we’d recommend buying the drill bit + attempting with your standard drill–if this doesn’t work, you can purchase a hammer drill for less than $25 at this link —-> click me 🙂

We then attached the arms of the mount to our TV. Don’t have picture of this, as we just followed the instructions that came with the mount. After this, we took a million deep breaths (lol) + began the process of drilling the mount aspect to the brick. We held the mount up to where we wanted to attach it + marked the holes with a colored pencil. Don’t have a picture of this, as it took all four of our hands.

T inserted the drill bit into his standard drill + got to drilling. He says it took a lot of force, which again, would be lessened with the use of a hammer drill. Overall, it was NOT bad and he finished drilling all 8 holes under ten minutes.


We then attached the mount to the brick with the Tapcon Concrete Anchor screws. For extra support, you may add a thin layer of liquid nails. We didn’t because we felt that it was stable enough, but a few posts will suggest it. We then hung the TV according to the instructions with the mount. I tried my best to tuck the cords into the back of the mantle + we have an Amazon FireStick, so no extra cords.

*As a note, we do have an existing outlet in the mantle top. The average to have a simple outlet placed is about $100 with an electrician.*

Like I said, SO EASY. Here’s a picture of the finished product:

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

Thanks for tuning in! It was so fun to type to you guys again! Hope to see ya real soon.


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