I was asked to build a focal point for a fireplace that showcased the quality of maple but also looked like it had been around for generations. I used 3 coats of a dark maple stain with 2 coats of a distressed painted finish. I sealed the entire mantel with a clear satin poly. This also works wonderful for a floating shelf.
Sizes can be all custom, but the size shown is 48in x 8in x 8in.