How to Cover a Fireplace Opening That is Not Used

Updated April 17, 2017

Fireplaces offer a lovely and romantic ambience in a home, but in the spring and summer they are rarely lit, leaving an unappealing black hole where a focal point should be. Cover a fireplace opening that is not used with a shabby chic cover constructed of old cupboard doors. This clever covering turns a cast-off into a treasure. Using minimal woodworking skills, this cover for a fireplace opening can easily be constructed as a weekend project.

Lay the cupboard doors side-by-side on the floor with the hinges all on the right edge. Remove the hinges from the door on the right. You will not need them. Line up the hinges of the two remaining doors with their neighbouring doors and use a pencil to mark the screw holes through the hinges for attaching. Depending on the type of hinges and doors used, the hinges may be attached on the front or back of the adjoining door. Use a small bit to drill a shallow pilot hole and attach the doors with the same size screws as the other hinges used. This is the basic structure of your cupboard door fireplace opening cover.

Remove the handles from the doors and set them aside. You will be reattaching them later. Sand the fronts and backs of the cupboard doors. You do not need to remove all of the paint or finish. You only need to eliminate rough spots and paint that may be peeling. Use a tack cloth to clean off the dust particles.

Paint the entire front and back surface of the doors and the hinges using white interior wall paint. Allow the paint to dry and repeat for complete coverage. Pour off-white paint in a disposable pie plate. Dip a sea sponge in the paint and lightly sponge the paint over the painted white surface. Allow the paint to dry.

Measure and cut wallpaper to fit the front inserts of each door. If there is no insert, cut the pieces 2 inches smaller than the door's surface dimensions. Apply Mod Podge to the back of each wallpaper piece using a sponge brush and centre them in the cupboard door inserts or centred on the cupboard door's front surface. Press and smooth out wrinkles and bubbles. Allow the Mod Podge to dry. If bubbles appear while drying, pierce the bubbles with a needle and press them out.

Paint Mod Podge over the front surface of the cupboard door fireplace cover and the dried wallpaper to seal. It will be milky, but it will dry clear. When dry, repeat twice more. Replace the handles on the cupboard doors to finish. Stand the cover in front of the fireplace opening.

Things You'll Need

  • Three same-size kitchen cupboard doors with hinges
  • Drill, small bit and screwdriver bit
  • Pencil
  • Sandpaper
  • Tack cloth
  • White interior wall paint
  • Paint brush
  • Off-white interior wall paint
  • Disposable pie plate
  • Sea sponge
  • Wallpaper
  • Yardstick
  • Scissors
  • Mod Podge
  • Sponge brush
  • Needle
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About the Author

Based in the Midwest, Cyndee Kromminga has been writing craft and interior design articles for 15 years. Her articles and craft designs have appeared in Crafting Traditions Magazine, Easy Holiday Crafting Series-House of White Birches Newsletter and Country Woman Christmas Books. Kromminga's education is in interior design and she has experience operating a craft and design business for more than 20 years.