- Wood, Stone & Marble Fireplace Mantels & Mantel Shelf FAQ's
- Mantel Shelves Article
Mantel Shelves Article
or many centuries we have had fireplaces in our homes as a source of heat in the winter. With this in mind it should come as no surprise that we would want to go beyond simple practicality and start working to make our fireplaces look more beautiful than they are practical. One of the ways we do this is by adding a mantel shelf above the fireplace that we could use to display any number of precious ornaments or photographs on. In days gone by the mantle shelves were also the perfect place for people to place candles or lanterns for light when it became dark. These shelves were and still are made from a variety of materials, while wood has long been the most popular there are many that are made from stone and marble. In many older homes wooden shelves were often paired together with a large mirror hanging on the wall above it to give the room a more open and spacious feel or a portrait of a member of the family. The amount of weight a mantel shelf will hold is dependent, almost exclusively, on how well the shelf is attached to the wall; the best support is attained when the shelf mounting brackets are securely fastened with hardware directly into studs.
In many cases antique authorities will tell you that real hardwood mantel shelves should be treated like a family heirloom. Many of them were and still are made from the finest hardwoods like maple, oak and cherry that can be made to look absolutely stunning with the right type of finish applied. Today you can still find craftsmen that have the skills to make beautiful wooden shelves like those made in the past so that your family can enjoy their mantel shelf for many years to come. One thing to take into consideration if you are looking at wooden mantel shelves to put in your home is what you local fire department and city rules have to say. Where wood was once the most common material used it can be considered a fire hazard and may no longer be permitted in your town or city. You should never make any modifications to your home without making sure that they meet with all local codes. If you cannot use wood you still have the choice of stone or marble mantel shelves.
At one time the only people who had a stone or marble mantle shelf were the wealthy elite. While these materials are still somewhat expensive, they are no longer reserved only for the upper class and can add a definite look of taste and sophistication to any fireplace while still being perfectly useful for display your family photographs or heirloom ornaments. In many cases you can purchases cultured marble at a fraction of the cost that still looks absolutely stunning. When you are ready to order an exquisitely crafted mantel shelf for your home there is only one place that you should consider and that is Design the Space. You will find a marvelous selection of mantel shelves that can be used with or without a full mantel to create the look you are after. Whether you are looking for a simple but elegant shelf or a uniquely carved shelf you will find the one you want in their catalog ready to be created just for you.
You may have a somewhat unique installation, be it a L-shape, or U-shape ' wrap-a-round' shelf, or perhaps you have facing brick or stone, and you want to cap it with what we call a brick pocket style mantel shelf. Here are some images for your reference.