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The question

I have a 1970s two-storey with a fireplace in the family room. The entire fireplace is brick from hearth to ceiling. I would like to cover the brick in copper, as I have seen in older buildings. How do I go about this?

The answer

Copper is pretty pricey these days, so you have got to love the look. Since it sounds as if you do, I would go for a standing seamed wall in a horizontal pattern. To begin, the existing brick needs to be furred out in metal channels; the copper sheets should then be attached to the furring channels.

Given the metal's flexibility, there are a range of colour options at your disposal, from the greenish patina that develops as copper ages to a shiny surface achieved by applying a finish coat. I would strongly recommend hiring a professional coppersmith to work with this precious material and approve both the design and the budget so there are no surprises. In other words, count your pennies now so you won't have to melt the copper down at a later date.

Follow architect and interior designer Dee Dee Taylor Eustace on Twitter: @ddtaylorddd. Have a design dilemma? E-mail

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