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Mitchell Andrus
08-02-2010, 11:03 AM
I took on a little project to surprise SWMBO when she gets back later this month. I decided that a house in the NC mountains needs to have at least a little rock pile somewhere, and I needed a little more than paint on the walls. The wussy mantel that was there had to go.

This took 56 hours over 8 days (I don't watch much TV). I'm sure a pro could have done it in half that.

There is no way to describe the mess you have to make - even when doing all of the cutting outside. There are rocks everywhere.... you need a good supply to choose from. The LR is filled as is one half of the 2 car garage. I'm glad I put down cardboard and tarps. I should have draped the LR from the rest of the house.

The 'rock' is cultured stone and is very light. They sound like cinder blocks 'clinking' together. A lot of air entrained and VERY easy to nibble the edges with a good sized hand cutter and very easy to cut with a 4.5" diamond cutter.

There are 15 or so rocks from the property incorporated and 2 candle holders built-in. Still looking at paint colors... not sure I like the green LOML picked out. I'm partial to one of the rusts.

No, I've never done this before, but I've worked with concrete quite a bit. I don't have any fingerprints left.
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Jerome Hanby
08-02-2010, 11:06 AM
Looks great!

Zach England
08-02-2010, 11:17 AM
I will buy you a plane ticket if you want to do that in my house.

Dan Friedrichs
08-02-2010, 11:49 AM
Wow - very nice. I like the brown color on the right side.

Belinda Williamson
08-02-2010, 11:54 AM
Wow! You'd think someone with this much skill could master the cereal thing. :rolleyes: Looks great Mitchell!

Charlie Reals
08-02-2010, 12:20 PM
I took on a little project to surprise SWMBO when she gets back later this month. I decided that a house in the NC mountains needs to have at least a little rock pile somewhere, and I needed a little more than paint on the walls. The wussy mantel that was there had to go.

This took 56 hours over 8 days (I don't watch much TV). I'm sure a pro could have done it in half that.

There is no way to describe the mess you have to make - even when doing all of the cutting outside. There are rocks everywhere.... you need a good supply to choose from. The LR is filled as is one half of the 2 car garage. I'm glad I put down cardboard and tarps. I should have draped the LR from the rest of the house.

The 'rock' is cultured stone and is very light. They sound like cinder blocks 'clinking' together. A lot of air entrained and VERY easy to nibble the edges with a good sized hand cutter and very easy to cut with a 4.5" diamond cutter.

There are 15 or so rocks from the property incorporated and 2 candle holders built-in. Still looking at paint colors... not sure I like the green LOML picked out. I'm partial to one of the rusts.

No, I've never done this before, but I've worked with concrete quite a bit.
I don't have any fingerprints left.
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Nice job Mitch. Ahhh yes, it is so much easier to use your finger tip to grout than the tool lol. Been there many times.

Mitchell Andrus
08-02-2010, 12:24 PM
Wow - very nice. I like the brown color on the right side.

Yea, I do too but there isn't as much contrast as I was hoping for and going darker won't do it. I think I've got to go lighter to make the stone pop.
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Bob Turkovich
08-02-2010, 1:57 PM
I took on a little project to surprise SWMBO when she gets back later this month. I decided that a house in the NC mountains needs to have at least a little rock pile somewhere, and I needed a little more than paint on the walls. The wussy mantel that was there had to go.

This took 56 hours over 8 days (I don't watch much TV). I'm sure a pro could have done it in half that.

There is no way to describe the mess you have to make - even when doing all of the cutting outside. There are rocks everywhere.... you need a good supply to choose from. The LR is filled as is one half of the 2 car garage. I'm glad I put down cardboard and tarps. I should have draped the LR from the rest of the house.

The 'rock' is cultured stone and is very light. They sound like cinder blocks 'clinking' together. A lot of air entrained and VERY easy to nibble the edges with a good sized hand cutter and very easy to cut with a 4.5" diamond cutter.

There are 15 or so rocks from the property incorporated and 2 candle holders built-in. Still looking at paint colors... not sure I like the green LOML picked out. I'm partial to one of the rusts.

No, I've never done this before, but I've worked with concrete quite a bit. I don't have any fingerprints left.
.

So, Mitch, help me out here a bit...

Your SWMBO is out of town and you're going to surprise her with this. Yet your LOML picked out the green color. :confused:

Does your SWMBO know about your LOML? :eek: (or is that the real surprise? :p )

Regardless, it looks great. Especially nice aesthetics on where you placed the larger stones to give it good balance. Frankly, I'm partial to the original green when you take the floor into consideration (but then I'm an engineer. The Design Office kept telling me I knew nothing when it came to styling........).

Mitchell Andrus
08-02-2010, 3:17 PM
So, Mitch, help me out here a bit...

Your SWMBO is out of town and you're going to surprise her with this. Yet your LOML picked out the green color. :confused:

Does your SWMBO know about your LOML? :eek: (or is that the real surprise? :p )

Regardless, it looks great. Especially nice aesthetics on where you placed the larger stones to give it good balance. Frankly, I'm partial to the original green when you take the floor into consideration (but then I'm an engineer. The Design Office kept telling me I knew nothing when it came to styling........).

LOL. Good catch. One and the same... most days.

The green gets to you after a while. I find it really cold and uninviting in such a large room. I gave the Mrs the slooooww noooo on painting the room another shade of green knowing I had this planned. I'm leaning towards an earth tone to compliment the stone.

I'm trying to be brave. And I've had it with Navajo White too.
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Mitchell Andrus
08-02-2010, 3:31 PM
Wow! You'd think someone with this much skill could master the cereal thing. :rolleyes: Looks great Mitchell!

I'm working my way up from 'spoon'.
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Don Alexander
08-02-2010, 11:16 PM
Wow! You'd think someone with this much skill could master the cereal thing. :rolleyes:


who needs cereal skills when they can do that with grits.............................. errrrrr rocks :D:D:D

Connie Gill
08-03-2010, 12:34 AM
How about a dull brick or sedona red - it would set the stone off nicely and give you a warm cozy color...finish the other walls with a meadow green of some sort (not green, green - kind of a muted dry grass). Trust me - it looks wonderful!

Mitchell Andrus
08-03-2010, 8:13 AM
who needs cereal skills when they can do that with grits.............................. errrrrr rocks :D:D:D

Oh, No! My secret formula for mortar has been revealed.....
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Mitchell Andrus
08-03-2010, 8:21 AM
How about a dull brick or sedona red - it would set the stone off nicely and give you a warm cozy color...finish the other walls with a meadow green of some sort (not green, green - kind of a muted dry grass). Trust me - it looks wonderful!

That's not bad if I limit it to the FP wall.
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Dan Hintz
08-03-2010, 11:27 AM
Don't limit yourself to one solid color, either... there are textures that set off a wall nicely, patterns that help break it up (like the top half one color and the bottom half a second, separated by a faux painted chair rail, etc., or just draw some wild geometric designs on it.).

mike holden
08-03-2010, 12:25 PM
Yowzer!
Nicely done!

Ummm.... how did *she* like it?

Mike

Michael Weber
08-03-2010, 9:19 PM
Hope you don't mind but I like the 'before' version better. Nice job though.

Mitchell Andrus
08-03-2010, 11:20 PM
Hope you don't mind but I like the 'before' version better. Nice job though.

The 'before' was well done but most of the higher priced homes we looked at have some element of the outdoors inside. Free standing stone fireplaces predominated in most of the great rooms we saw (while house hunting) with entrances and kitchens detailed in stone a close second. The rest of the house has pretty standard and incredibly boring white trim all over the place. This new FP adds context and some badly needed testosterone.

We batted around the idea of canceling this FP and putting one between the great room and the dining room, only with a real chimney in the new one. We decided that it would take up too much space, so this propane heater surrounded by rock is a compromise.

We're planing to use this rock as a motif in the kitchen down the line, bookending the first floor. It'll also be used to augment the front entrance to help pull the outdoors inside a bit. This type of dry-stacked stone (real stone) is already in the yard bordering the gardens. It's fairly common to see dry-stacked ledge stone in western NC.
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Jim Becker
08-04-2010, 8:48 PM
Nice work!!!! And a great upgrade for that fireplace, for sure...

Mitchell Andrus
08-04-2010, 9:58 PM
Thanks, Jim. You are in the Brandywine area, SE PA. I'm sure you're getting pretty sick of seeing stone everywhere. I've visited many times... seems anything that could be built out of stone, was.

Been to the Wyeth Museum?
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