Our living room came with a fireplace, but no mantle. Why do builders do this? It truly makes the fireplace look cold and un-inviting! So, I came up with a way to make a mantle and very inexpensively.
I ran to Home Depot and picked up two 4x4's, pre-treated with a rustic look and feel to them. I had Home Depot cut the pieces of wood to 64 inches in length.
I went and found two brackets I liked, some wall screws and anchors that could carry 100 pounds.
I placed the two pieces of wood side by side, screwed them into the brackets, and it makes the perfect mantle to display items. It feels much more cozy and intimate in the living room now, just the look I was going for.
So, for $40.00....a mantle to enjoy!