Ideally looking for someone who has done this before and can offer
pictures or advice...
Because of my living room layout, the best place for the TV is where the
fireplace is located. (I'm in S. Texas, and NEVER use the fireplace.)
It's a brick fireplace with a relatively cheap, builder-installed
mantle. The brick extends all the way up to the ceiling. There is a
fairly typical brick base in front of the fireplace about 10" tall. It
protrudes away from the face of the fireplace about 24".
The TV will be a new flat-screen type, so it won't be very deep.
I'm thinking of three options:
1) Remove the mantle and construct a small base cabinet (~18" tall) that
sits on top of the brick base. The TV would sit on top of the cabinet.
For this option, I would probably go with some type of stained finish.
Advantages: Low investment in time and materials. Disadvantage: I
have a feeling that it would look really bad.
2) Remove the mantle and construct a large cabinet to completely hide
the brick. It would be ~8' tall and extend all the way up to the
ceiling. The bottom of the large cabinet would wrap around the brick
base. Construction would be hardwood plywood, which could be stained or
possibly just painted white. I would do some shelves or something
(mantle?) above the TV, so there wasn't just a big blank space up there.
I could apply moldings, etc, to dress it up. It would not look like
a simple plywood box.
Advantages: Could look nice if done correctly. Disadvantages: Big time
investment in both time and material, could look crappy if not done properly
3) Kind of a hybrid between options one and two. Build a medium-sized
cabinet that wraps around (and hides) the brick base and fireplace. But
leave it short, so that the brick will be exposed behind the TV all the
way up to the ceiling. Advantages: medium investment . Disadvantages:
unsure of how it will look.
I'm a fairly accomplished woodworker, so any of these options are within
my skills. I really need some design input to give myself the best
chance for success on the first try!
I think option 1 will be ugly. Option 2 will be a big job. Option 3 has
potential to look good or look ugly.
At this point, I'm thinking of starting with Option 3, and then morphing
into Option 2 if needed to make it look nice.
ps: I could post a picture of the fireplace on the binary newsgroup if