Having gone out of fashion for a few decades thanks to central heating, fireplaces are having another moment in the spotlight. In part, this trend can be attributed to the development of new technologies such as gas-burning, electric, and bio-ethanol options, which are more eco-friendly and less hazardous to our health than traditional wood-burning stoves. However, their newfound popularity is also related to the timeless beauty of the fireplace and the coziness that comes with a roaring flame. To make the most of your own fireplace, incorporate decor elements that suit both the space and your home as a whole.
Many modern fireplaces come with special alcoves for storing decorative wood. Even if you do not plan to burn any, piling a number of rough-cut logs on top of each other in an alcove or box will add a sense of rustic wonder to your living space. Top off the look with a rustic mantle and other farmhouse elements, such as a vase of dried flowers and some lanterns or vintage pokers.
It may sound a little unorthodox, but a mantelpiece-free fireplace can look super chic. There are a number of fuel-types to choose from. Wood-burning, open fireplaces may work for this look, as they can be installed in an old recessed hearth — it may simply be a case of getting rid of the surround. Alternatively, you could install a modern recessed fireplace that runs on a more eco-friendly fuel and boasts a chic glass screen.
Mounting a widescreen TV above your fireplace is a fantastic way to feel super cozy on long winter nights without sacrificing the practical purpose of your sitting room. Indeed, it allows you to curl up with your favorite box set while enjoying the glow of a roaring fire at the same time. Just make sure that the TV is a safe distance from the fire so that it does not get damaged.
If your fireplace surround is looking a little worse for wear after years of service, why not give it a new lease of life with a fresh coat of paint? This will only work with certain materials, of course, and you will need to find a heat-resistant paint that can withstand a hot flame. Once you have found a suitable brand, select a color that will complement your walls and furniture, or make this upgrade part of a whole room redesign.
There is something about a fireplace that evokes feelings of nostalgia — why not embrace that and deck out your mantelpiece with vintage items? From antique clocks to beautifully bound old novels, vintage treasures will look fantastic atop a classic fireplace. Of course, those planning to embrace a modern minimalist look should avoid this, opting instead for decorative pieces that align with their aesthetic tastes.
If you're planning on installing a fireplace into a formal part of the home such as a function room, foyer, or dining room, or if you're planning a major overhaul of an existing piece, you may wish to invest in a marble surround to impress your guests and inject your home with luxury. Although the idea of a marble surround may sound a little old-fashioned, there are plenty of modern options out there if you want the fireplace to feel fresh.
If you have a gas or bio-ethanol fireplace, you do not need to add coal or wood to the hearth to keep the flame burning. However, a fireplace without wood or coal can look a little unappealing or inauthentic. If you would like to embrace a traditional fireplace aesthetic without having to deal with soot or pollution, simply add artificial coal to a gas or eco-fireplace. The faux fixtures are typically made from ceramic and can withstand very high heat.
A fireplace screen is simply a metal sheet placed in front of a wood-burning stove to stop coals and embers erupting out. Even if your fireplace runs on a fuel other than wood, however, a fireplace screen can still look attractive and cozy. There are likely to be scores of screens in second-hand stores if you're looking for something traditional. Alternatively, modern fireplace retailers are stocked full of sleek and minimalist varieties.
If you’re hoping to make your fireplace feel just that little bit more magical, try draping the mantelpiece in string of fairy lights. This will make the room feel particularly welcoming and warm during friendly gatherings throughout the year, not to mention Thanksgiving and Christmas. Simply turn off the main room light and appreciate the warm glow of the fire combined with soft lighting.
If you have a penchant for chic traditionalism, hang a mirror above your fireplace. The space above the mantel has long been considered the perfect spot for a large, ornate mirror, so why not shop around for a beautiful vintage model to blow your friends and family away? This is a very clever trick if you’re looking to transform the atmosphere of your living room with minimal effort. And if you love the idea but aren't into the traditional vibe, a modern, Scandinavian-inspired mirror could do the trick, too.