Step 1

Size Up the Project

First, choose the wall that best fits the room arrangement and traffic flow. Make sure it accommodates the size of TV to be wall mounted, that receptacles and TV cables are within easy reach, and that there is room to store a DVD player and other home theater equipment.

Step 2

Find a Mantel

Research and Locate a Mantel

Purchase Materials and Supplies

At Blog Cabin 2011, an existing circa-1905 fireplace mantel was already on site, and the TV electrics and cable for the mounting wall were predetermined and wired during to the remodel. But not all DIYers will be remodeling the TV room to accommodate a wall-hanging unit. If the wooden fireplace mantel and the TV that will fit inside it need to be researched and purchased, the following variables may be considered during research.

Locate the Mantel: If the TV is already chosen, take TV measurements and research the size of mantel needed. Research for a wall mounting mantel may include, but is not limited to, architectural salvage suppliers, old country antiques shops, and online retailers and auction sites. Used mantels range in price from $75 to more than $500.

Locate the TV: The TV variables to consider when shopping for a wall unit may include, but are not limited to, type (LCD, LED, HD, 3-D and plasma), size (measured diagonally), weight, flat-screen, make and model. Do some homework before shopping.

Choose a TV Wall Mount: While researching online, include in the Web search "TV wall mounts." There are so many wall mounting variables and options from which to choose. These may include, but are not limited to, single arm versus dual arm articulation, tight collapse profile, single stud mount versus dual stud mount and range of motion (tilt, swivel and extension from wall). Design and construction, material, finish and ease of installation are just a few more variables that will impact the decision. The smaller the TV on the wall, the simpler the choices.

Step 3

Scrape Off Loose Paint

Prep the Mantel

Prep the Mantel

Scrape off any loose paint chips and, to create a distressed finish, expose the bare wood.

Pro Tip

Lead-based paint is toxic. Always wear gloves and a heavy-duty dust mask when working on paint applied prior to 1978. When cleaning up, collect the paint chips, rags and dust mask in a heavy-duty garbage bag and seal. State mandates vary when dealing with lead-based paint cleanup and disposal. For further information, visit your state's department of health website.

Step 4

Place Mantel on Screws

Hang the Mantel

Hang the Mantel (Upside Down)

Any mantel of size, regardless of weight, must be connected to the wall studs. Using a stud finder or tapping with the knuckle technique and listening to sound changes will identify where the wall studs are located.

With assistance, lift the mantel, upside down, to its chosen height and location on the wall. Pilot hole locations must be marked on the mantel. Lower the mantel and pre-drill the pilot holes. Only four screws are needed. Pre-set the 3-inch screws and hold the mantel back up onto the wall, aligning the wall studs and pre-set mounting screws. Screw the mantel into place, leveling as you work. Fill in the counter-sunk screw holes with wood putty and touch-up paint.

Step 5

Attach Brackets to Wall

Prep Wall for TV Mount

Prep Wall for TV Mount

TV wall mounts can be attached with single stud mount or dual stud mount capabilities. Determine the height of the TV and calculate the attachment location on the wall based on the manufacturer's suggested mounting instructions. Attach wooden brackets (2" x 4" x 30") to the wall studs with 3" screws, following proper manufacturer's spacing recommendations. Secure the TV wall mount to this wooden bracket using the manufacture's attachment kit.

Step 6

Attach TV To the Mount and Plug in Cables

Attach TV to the Wall Mount

Attach TV to Wall Mount

Attach the TV to the wall mount following the manufacturer's suggested instructions. Plug the TV into the wall receptacle and hook up the cable. Adjust the TV tilt and its swing arm, grab the remote and some refreshments, and then kick back and admire the new DIY TV room.

Options: To top off the TV room, consider adding a vintage table (of the same era as the mantel) underneath the TV to hold the DVD player or an old bookshelf to hold DVDs.