I had a client recently ask me about updating their fireplace. They wanted to know if they should stop the ledge stone at the mantel or continue up to the ceiling. In their situation it was a must to continue up because there is a jut out above the mantle as seen in the photo above. If the fireplace had been flush with the wall then it may have been a different answer. I think however that on the whole one can not go wrong with continuing the ledge stone all the way to the ceiling. In many cases less is more but in this case the opposite is true!