While I will admit I kind of love the mantel, the stone slabs were terrible, the overall scale was wrong for the room (too short and wide), and the style was fighting with the simple shaker lines of the adjacent kitchen. Plus the client just didn't like it.
The square format tiles are mission-inspired and the dark color grounds the room. My favorite thing might be the coppery listello, that decorative tile that runs between the tile surround and the mantel (and also rings the tiled hearth.) We used solid cherry to fit in with the trim throughout the house, and we created a more-square proportion and a very substantial profile.
What do you think? I love the way it holds up the room!