The Transforming Power of Birch Bark Wall Coverings

Recently a client contacted Arden Creek Designs regarding their fireplace. Our client had a beautiful home situated on a lake in the Adirondack Park. When they bought the home a year ago they had done extensive renovations, but they were not pleased with the fireplace. The fireplace was the focal point in the living room; it was a floor to ceiling structure faced off with a drab dark brown brick. The walls and ceiling were covered with wood tongue and grove knotty pine paneling. The overpowering abundance of the wood paneling coupled with the brick fireplace created a drab, depressing environment. Ever since they bought the home they were intrigued with the idea of somehow incorporating White Birch Bark into this living space, the question was how and where.  When they contacted Arden Creek Designs they asked us if we could apply White Birch Bark to the brick section above the mantel on the fireplace. Together we came up with a design which included white birch bark, trimmed with twigs. The birch was installed and top portion of the fireplace met the client’s expectations.    

The client was pleased with both the quality of the White Birch bark and the installation but felt that something was now needed on the bottom portion. A few weeks after we did the installation, we received a call asking what could be done to enhance the bottom section of the fireplace. Our advice was to cover the bottom half with bark as well, leaving a 5” reveal of brick around the opening of the fireplace box and trimmed with twigs to match the top section. The client agreed and the white birch bark was added.

The application of White Birch Bark not only transformed the fireplace, it transformed the whole room. The drab, uninviting fireplace and the overpowering abundance of knotty pine wood walls and ceiling was naturalized. The white birch bark created a warm and inviting environment that complemented and blended with the rest of the room and its contents, attest to the fact that when properly done, white birch bark can rejuvenate and bring life to an otherwise uninteresting living space.