DIY Mantel

When we moved into our house last October, I knew I had to install a mantel on our fireplace in time to decorate it for the holidays.  I built a simple box mantel from wood boards and share how to build and install it below.  Unfortunately our chimney inspector informed us it was too close to the wood burning stove.  I kept it up for the holidays, but sadly removed last January.  I annoying reinstalled it above the vents a few weeks back.  Then I decked it out for the holidays!  

Keep reading to see how to install your own box mantel.  

Bottle Brush Mantel Decor
Holiday Mantel decor
vintage mantel decor


DIY Mantel Supplies
before mantel

My father-in-law, handyman mentor helped me out with the plans.

DIY Mantel Plan

Step 1: Cut the two 1"x6" and 1"x4" boards to desired length.  And cut two pieces of the 1"x6" board to close off the ends as pictured here. 

box mantel

Step 2: use the brad nailer and 2" nails to secure the box together.  Sand, pre-stain and stain. 

building a mantel

Step 3: Mark the placement of the dowel that will be fixed to the chimney, "cleat."  Use a level and chalk to mark in the mortar where the holes will be drilled.  With the placement of the stones I was able to make four holes. 

installing mantel

Step 4: drill into the marks.  Tip: tape the drill bit equal to the length of the lag shield, so you know when to stop drilling.   Insert lag shield into the holes.

installing DIY mantel

Step 5: mark the cleat where the holes are located. 

installing a mantel

Step 6: Drill holes into the wood where marked.  

installing DIY mantel

Step 7: insert the lag screws through hole in cleat and into lag shield and tighten.  

installing DIY mantel

Step 8: slide mantel box onto the cleat and use the brad nailer to secure.  

Installing DIY mantel

Now decorate! 

DIY Mantel