First, I demolished two rows of floor tile. I could have built on top of the floor tile, but I plan on one day replacing all of the tile in the house.
So by removing the tiles below, this hack will not stand in the way of that effort years down the road.
Then, I built a false wall that would provide structure for the stacked stone, TV mount, and allow for hiding all wires and cables.
The wall was tap-conned to the floor, lag bolted to the ceiling joists, and tap-conned to the exterior wall for good measure. This part was challenging due to the warping and bowing inherent to the 2×4 studs, but I was able to compensate for this as I went.
Framing the BRIMNES units
Next, I built a 2×4 frame to lift the BRIMNES unit 3.5″ off the floor. This both provided a stable platform that could be leveled to compensate for uneven surface, and allowed room for a chunky baseboard in the finished product.
The floor frame is tied to the false wall with a combination of pocket screws and conventional screwed joints.
The BRIMNES units were placed on the platforms, then a frame was constructed on top of the units to tie them to the ceiling and the outer walls. At this point, the BRIMNES units were 100% tied to the structure.
With the frame complete, the structure was skinned in MDF panels. Crown molding was applied, as well as baseboards. The seam where the BRIMNES units met the MDF skin was covered with casing.
Extra framing was added to mount the TV. This was not due to a TV of some incredible weight, but so that the mount would be flush with the combination of the stacked stone and backer board.
The false wall was then covered in concrete backer board, and stacked stone applied.
All that was left from there on was paint and to mount the TV. Amazon supplied some bias lighting for the TV, as well as under cabinet lights for the BRIMNES glass door units.
And the entertainment wall is complete. (Pending the replacement of the removed strip of floor tiles)
How long and how much did it cost?
Around 3 weeks, though I still have some of the original floor tile to go back and replace.
I don’t usually do so, but for this project I kept a very detailed cost sheet. Total cost was $1328.38.
This does not include the TV which happened to be new and the impetus for the whole project, or the replacement of the original tile which is still pending.
What was the hardest part about this hack?
Building the false wall, especially with the relatively warped and twisted 2x4s available at the big box stores was a real challenge. Also, removing 2 rows of tile was unpleasant.
What to pay special attention to?
With this project I felt that alignment and level was key. The floor and walls rarely cooperate, but it’s amazing what shims and latex caulk will conceal!
Looking back, would you have done it differently?
With so much of the TV area covered in, well, TV, there is not a lot of visible stacked stone. I might have chosen something cheaper in retrospect, but I can’t deny the look is stunning.