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No prep work is required for a brick surround. For a tile or stone surround or other uneven surface, first remove the surround material and cover surface with cement board.
Mix masonry thin-set in a bucket until it is the consistency of peanut butter.
Select the first stone and apply thin-set to the back of the stone with a trowel. This process is known as “back buttering.”
Working from the floor up, stack stones. Offset joints for a random look. Let set for 24 hours. No grouting is required. Top fireplace with a mantel.
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