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When is Bigger Better? Enlarging a Mantel the White River Way

When is Bigger Better? Enlarging a Mantel the White River Way

At first glance, the above mantel looks like our MAN9012. There is the same beautiful center carving and those hefty corbels. But then look at the mantel relative to the objects around it. That’s when it clicks: this mantel is big. Significantly bigger than our stock piece.

Not that our stock MAN9012 is small. At 7’-3” wide and 4’-10 ¾” tall, it’s a pretty impressive carving. But this custom piece is over a foot taller and a foot wider. The custom mantel covers a wall area nearly 50% larger than the stock piece. This took some careful planning and fabrication.


We did not want to use the same size pieces as they were designed. Nor did we want to just add more. Both have their place in millwork design, but both approaches would create a mantel that feels differently than the MAN9012. The customer also wanted the mantel in White Oak, further necessitating custom solutions.

Instead, the key items were re-designed and proportionally adjusted. This enabled White River to maintain the stock mantel’s look and feel at the larger size. Detailed drawings were created by our in-house design staff, which then guided the work of master carvers to re-create the look and feel of MAN9012.

These pieces were then assembled in our custom shop. The above photo shows the detail of the large central carving flanked by ornate mouldings to the top and bottom. 

The customer’s space was of a size that demanded this larger scale. It took special effort to scale everything up to a proper size and scale. The end result is proof that bigger done right is better.

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