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Classic White Fireplace – Measurements & Materials

Renovating your fireplace or building from scratch? Get the full details of our classic white fireplace design, including measurements and building supplies.

White Fireplace Mantel with Marble Subway Tile Surround

Before I start sharing all kinds of ideas for spring, I thought I’d circle back on one of our most popular home improvement projects, our classic white fireplace. I still get plenty of questions about this makeover, from fireplace dimensions, to marble subway tile details, to grout colour, MDF mantel and more. So, I finally put together this follow up post as a guide.

Classic White Fireplace with Painted MDF Mantel and Marble Surround

If you’re planning on building a fireplace from scratch or renovating an existing one like we did, I suggest reading the overview of our fireplace makeover first. Then, come back here for specific measurements and building supplies.

Combined, the two posts should get you well on your way. I do not include step-by-step building instructions, so feel free to ask any other questions you may have in the comment section at the bottom of the post.

White Classic Fireplace Makeover with MDF Mantel and Marble Subway Tile Surround

Fireplace Measurements

We created these fireplace drawings as a quick reference (they are not to scale). All dimensions are in inches (see note below for correction). Keep in mind, our project included building over an existing fireplace with a ceiling height of 8 feet. Most likely, your project will require adjustments.

Note: Be sure to check your local area for fireplace building regulations. Top measurement should read 59.25″ across, not 69.25″.

Fireplace Front View Drawing

Measurement Guide to Build a Classic White Fireplace

Fireplace Side View Drawing

Measurements to Build Our Classic White Fireplace with Marble Subway Tile Surround

As you can see, our fireplace isn’t too deep since it’s built recessed into an exterior wall. Be sure to tweak your measurements as necessary to accommodate the fireplace insert you plan on using, as well as for an interior wall. These are usually included as part of your insert’s specification sheet.

White Painted MDF Fireplace Mantel

Be sure to pin this fireplace graphic for later if you’re planning on tackling this project. It’ll come in handy!

Measurement Guide to Build a Classic White Fireplace - Front and Side Views

Note: Top measurement should read 59.25″ across, not 69.25″.

Some links used in this post are affiliates. Please refer to my disclosure policy for more information.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the materials we used to build our white-painted fireplace mantel with marble surround and hearth.

Fireplace Building Materials

Classic White Fireplace Design Sketch with Building Materials

Supplies List

CrownMetrie Fashion Forward MDF 4.25″ (H) x .75″ (D)

CasingMetrie Flat Stock MDF 4.5″ (H) x .75″ (D)

Stop MouldingPrimed MDF 1.25″ (H) x .375″ (D)

MDF BoardPanel .75″ (D)

Other materials– Steel Framing Studs, Drywall, Corners, Tape, Compound, Screws, Nail Filler and Paintable Caulk (found at our local Home Depot)

PaintBenjamin Moore White Dove (Water-based lacquer custom mixed at Sherwin Williams then applied with sprayer) Note: Upper drywall section painted in Benjamin Moore Aura® Waterborne Interior Paint in Eggshell (Wall paint is Benjamin Moore Baby Fawn)

Tile– 2×4″ Polished Carrera Marble Subway Tile (discontinued at Home Depot- Similar Tile), Stainless Steel Tile Edging Trim and Thinset Mortar

GroutPolyblend Bright White

Gas Fireplace Insert– Existing 36″ (W) x 32.75″ (H)

Classic Fireplace Design with White MDF Mantel and Marble Tile Surround

Fireplace Decor

Tip: I highly recommend installing a sturdy backing to the upper section of your fireplace so you can safely hang heavier items like mirrors and artwork without using heavy duty anchors.

See our living room decor sources for artwork, mirror, etc. (or click the pictures below to shop). I also share a simple tutorial for making your own fern art (as shown in the top photo).

And there you have it! As mentioned, please let me know if you have any other questions about this fireplace makeover project in the comments below. I will update as required.

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Happy building!

Shauna at Satori Design for Living Blog - Home Decor, DIY, Vintage Finds, Recipes


  1. Hi! Unfortunately, it looks like the links for the crown and casing are broken. Can you reshare them? Thank you!

  2. My fireplace insert front panel/doors are flush with the wall; or sheetrock. It appears from the pics your fireplace insert front panel extends well beyond the wall. If so, by how many inches? If you are unable to provide that measurement I would love to get the depth in inches from the outer surface of one of the columns to the front fireplace panel; I can do the math from there. Thanks

    1. Hi Arthur, We no longer live in this home, so I can’t get the exact measurement. However, if you look at the side profile diagram in the blog post, you can find the depth from the wall measurements there. Hope this helps :)

    1. Hi Ashlee, Our exact marble subway tile has been discontinued at Home Depot. However, I did add a similar one to the supplies list.

  3. Hi! Can you tell me the dimensions of the tile part of the fireplace? I see the drywall measurements but not the tile part. Thank you

    1. Hi Rachel, The tiles measure 2×4 inches, so almost 8 inches all around (not quite 4 full tiles at the top or 2 full at the side). We no longer live at this house, or I’d give an exact measurement. Hope this helps :)

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