Here's an example of one of the tough challenges Mike faces with the old houses we work in, and how he came up with the perfect solution.
This fireplace was too shallow to install the Windsor gas insert the customer wanted. In this case the fireplace could not be deepened by removing a row of bricks how we commonly must do, so the solution was to build it out.
Mike fabricated a metal box (not visible in the photo) to extend in towards the room. The old mantel was still on site but had been removed as part of the renovation that exposed the brick walls. However, the mantel wasn't deep enough to hide the metal box Mike built so he extended the mantel by adding wood behind the mantel to deepen it. The photo shows this customization before the mantel was painted.
While this concept wouldn't work with a mantel that's made of fine wood, it's the perfect solution for this shabby chic room. I just love the rustic luxe design!