This is the first of two fireplaces we are re-tiling during the renovation of a 19th century Gothic Revival home in Southern Indiana. In both cases, we enlarged the hearths and reinforced the subfloors to make room for cast iron stoves that will be installed in the future. This is the more decorative of the two and showcases Japanese hand-painted porcelain tiles the previous homeowner installed that are reminiscent of the kind that could have been originally used.
This is the second of the two “Fireplace” fronts we re-tiled in a 19th century home in Southern Indiana. In this case, the 1″ thick poplar boards were plenty sufficient to hold the weight of the future cast iron stove, so we simply glued 1/2″ cement board down and tiled the hearth with red quarry tiles. The simple front was tiled from handmade Mexican cake tiles that have natural irregularity giving it a antiquated look.