Easy DIY Faux Fireplace Insert With Real Logs

Recently I shared how we turned a Mid-Century Modern Headboard into a Faux Fireplace. Originally we added a trio of candleholders into the firebox opening but I wasn't happy with the look. The plan was to replace them with chunkier wood candlesticks until I got this idea...

DIY Fireplace Insert With Real Logs

Easy DIY Faux Fireplace Insert With Real Logs

This is what the original candle holders looked like. Wouldn't you agree, they were just not working?

Faux Fireplace From An MCM Headboard

...and here is the fireplace with the real log insert. Much better, right?

Faux Fireplace With Real Log Insert

To refresh your memory, in case you missed the From Headboard To Faux Fireplace post, this is what the headboard originally looked like.

Vintage Headboard Before Repurposed Into Faux Fireplace

Remember those headboards with sliding doors on the top? Perhaps you still have one or see them at thrift stores all the time. They are not difficult to repurpose into a faux fireplace.

Step 1 - Finding the perfect logs

We foraged through the woodpile in our back yard to find some logs that stacked well together.

Wood Piles = Mice

Mice = Screaming Woman Running Down The Street

Thankfully no mouse was found in the making of this fire log insert.

Step 2 - Stacking the logs 

After we found the perfect log configuration we flipped the stack upside down and screwed them all together using #8 2-inch wood screws.

Stacked Logs Attached With Screws For Fireplace Insert

Step 3 - Aging Fresh Cut Logs

The logs are from an old tree that fell down in our backyard this Spring during an unwelcomed snowstorm. The cut ends of each log were still green so I aged them with what I call Giggle Juice. I always have a batch at the ready in a sealed container.

Aging Wood Solution Recipe:

White or Apple Cider Vinegar
Grade #0000 Steel Wool
Container with lid

  • Fill the container with vinegar and soak steel wool for several days in a sealed container.
  • Apply using a sponge or brush but be sure to wear gloves or your hands will be stained for weeks.
  • Reapply until you reach the desired aged patina.

Step 4 - Drill Holes For Votive Candleholders

Using a 2 1/2" Hole Saw Bit, drill holes into the logs where you plan to insert glass votive candle holders.
Drilling Holes For Faux Fireplace Insert

Step 5 - Insert Candles

For safety reasons, I placed battery operated tea lights into each glass votive holder. You could place battery operated wax candles in the holes instead.

Battery Operated Candles In Log Faux Fireplace Insert

Here is the left side of the faux fireplace with real log insert...

Left Side Faux Fireplace with Real Log Insert

...and the right side of the faux fireplace.

Right Side Faux Fireplace with Real Log Insert

Headboard Faux Fireplace with Real Log Insert

If you like the idea of using real logs and candles inside a faux fireplace or existing wood burning fireplace box, please share this with a friend and/or save it on Pinterest.

How To DIY a Fireplace Insert With Real Logs

Which look do you prefer, the look of natural logs or using candlesticks inside a fireplace opening? I'd love to hear about in the comment section below.

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