Choosing the Perfect Stone Veneer for your Fireplace Surround

Key things to keep in mind with tips from Tim Carter of

So you have decided to take the leap and FINALLY cover that old brick fireplace or include a natural stone fireplace in your new home. Here are three tips to help you make the perfect stone veneer fireplace, some tips from Tim Carter (a licensed contractor), and some great fireplace ideas to give you inspiration!

Combining Stone and Design for your Fireplace

Rustic, Colonial, Contemporary, Modern, Old World, Tuscan, and Log Cabin, are just a few of the different designs that you may choose for your home or space. Not only the type of natural stone veneer that you choose, but also the color, shape, and installation will create the final work of art.

Contemporary and Modern Stone Fireplaces

Today’s most popular look in fireplaces is stacked stone, where natural veneer stones are stacked closely together with either no joint showing or a small recessed joint.

Stone veneer shapes used for a stacked stone look are either ledgestone, ashlar (showing a different face of the stone, normally slightly darker) or a mix of the two.

Some designers, stonemasons and homeowners break up the stacked stone with random mosaic or square pieces as accents.

“I’ve seen spectacular stone fireplaces that are 20 or more feet high, rustic stone fireplaces that have custom-carved stone-fireplace mantels and quaint stone fireplaces in modest homes. You can use flat stone, small rounded boulders or coarse volcanic rock. It’s just a matter of the style and the type of rock that matches the color scheme and feel of the room.” 

Tim Carter,

Rustic and Traditional Stone Fireplaces

Classic to New England are the round fieldstones reclaimed from abandoned stone walls, and from farms and fields. These round stones are gathered then cut to approximately 1.25″ thickness to be adhered to a flat vertical surface.

Round fieldstone thin veneer gives the appearance of a fully rounded natural stone yet are lighter and easier to install for newly constructed fireplaces or to reface an existing brick fireplace. Below are fireplace ideas for rustic looks with both round stone, stacked stone and ledgestone.

What a Difference a Joint Can Make

One aspect of the installation that can have the biggest effect aesthetically is the chosen joint technique. There are three popular application types used with fireplace stone: dry-Laid or recessed joint, standard joint, and wide joint.

The color of the mortar used in the pointing processes will also dramatically effect the overall look and design. In all installations the joints should be as uniform as possible. For more information on the various joint techniques and mortar methods, visit our mortar joints page.

Dry-Laid or Recessed Mortar Joints

Dry-laid mortar joints make the stone appear to be touching at all points with hardly any seam and no mortar showing between stones. These joints are referred to as paper-thin joints. If you desire these joints, expect to pay for the extra time it takes to shape each stone exactly to each surrounding stone.

You can expect to have more waste due to trimming and should order extra stone to allow enough material for tight joints. Recessed mortar joints are 1/2″ below the face of the stone and give a nice shadow effect to the mortar joint lines.

Standard Grout Joints

Standard grout joints can be 1/4″ to 3/8″ inch in thickness for interior stone veneer and 3/4:-1 1/2″ for exterior fireplaces and chimneys, and can either be recessed 1/4″ from the face of the stone or flush with the face.

Stone edges are naturally irregular. Standard grout joints make it easier to install with a normal amount of trimming and shaping with about 15% waste.

Wide Grout Joints

Generally the most rustic fireplace look no matter the shape of the stone veneer. You’ll find 1″ wide joints on large fireplaces, and in country homes for both the fireplace and interior and exterior chimney. There is even a brushed joint look where the mortar is brushed over some of the fireplace stone veneer. Wide fireplace joints allow for less stone veneer waste.

Customize and Combine Stone Colors & Shapes to Make your Fireplace Unique

When deciding on the perfect natural stone choice to fit your space it can be difficult to find just the right blend of colors and shapes. No matter where your fireplace is located it will be the focal point for the room and the anchor of the overall design.

Sometimes a little customization is just what is needed to make the space truly your own. The best way to do this is by combining different colors and shapes of natural thin stone veneer to create your own unique work of art, whether it be a rustic fireplace, a contemporary design, a traditional ledgestone fireplace with a granite mantel or a bluestone hearth stone.

A focal point of a stone veneer fireplace often starts with natural stone thin veneer

Stone is a versatile and timeless material that can be used in various ways to create the ideal focal point for your fireplace. 

Stone veneer, in particular, is an excellent choice for cladding the exterior of a stone fireplace due to its versatility. 

Overall, stone is an exceptional option when it comes to designing your perfect fireplace centerpiece.

Natural stone thin veneer is a popular choice for many homeowners because it’s easy to install and maintain. It can be installed in many shapes and manners, from straight lines to curves and waves. Rustic stone fireplaces are often created with real stone. Stone Fireplace Walls are clad with your desired shape and color of stone veneer.

The best part? Stone is available in a variety of colors, textures, and sizes for all fireplaces, chimneys and outdoor hardscape design.

Fireplace Stone Veneer is available in a wide range of colors, textures and sizes, making it an ideal choice for fireplaces, chimneys and other applications. With its natural appearance and durability, stone veneer can add a touch of elegance to any living space. Whether you prefer the rustic look of stacked stone or the sleekness of smooth-cut stones, there are many options to choose from. Natural stone veneer is particularly well-suited for fireplaces due to its heat-resistant properties and ability to withstand extreme temperatures.

The possibilities are endless. Real stone, all natural, cut thin for use on all vertical surfaces, inside or out for residential or commercial architecture. Cost effective and competitive in price with man made faux stone.

How to visualize stone for your home or commercial exterior siding?

  1. Stoneyard Stone Visualizer

    Use the Stone Visualizer Now

Stoneyard offers a wide range of natural stone veneer options for designing the perfect fireplace centerpiece. Stone veneer is a popular choice for many homeowners because it’s easy to install and maintain. It can be installed in many shapes and manners, from straight lines to curves and waves.

When selecting a stone for your fireplace, consider the look and aesthetic you want to achieve, your budget, and who will be doing the work. There are many types of natural stone options to choose from, including slate, limestone, granite, marble, flagstone, river rock, and soapstone.

Each type of stone has its unique features and benefits, such as durability, eco-friendliness, heat resistance, and aesthetic appeal. Stone veneer, in particular, is an excellent choice for cladding the exterior of a stone fireplace due to its versatility.Stoneyard also offers modern stone veneer fireplace ideas to inspire your design.

Crafting a modern stone veneer fireplace involves modifying texture, hue, and layout to achieve different aesthetics. Each type of stone veneer expresses a distinct identity and feel, making it fun and exciting to design your own modern stone fireplace. With the right stone veneer, you can create a cozy and inviting ambiance around your fireplace that complements your home’s style and personality.

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