When thinking about how to design your ideal fireplace, there are many factors to consider. To begin with, you’ll want to take your overall home design into consideration. Then, on a smaller scale, the room that the fireplace will be located in should be taken into account. This will ensure that the design of your fireplace matches that of your home. If you are doing a renovation of an older fireplace, you may be limited to what is possible as the construction aspect is already complete.
With an indoor fireplace, there are limited options unless you go for complete demolition and remodel. This type of job might include a complete change of all or some of the elements of the fireplace from the hearth, the firebox, the surround, and the mantel. The only thing that is easily changeable is your fireplace tools.
When you are looking into fireplace design ideas for an outdoor fireplace, you have to take into account the uncontrollable factors like wind forces and things like rain and snow. On the bright side, you will likely have much more flexibility when it comes to design because it will be going from the ground up in many cases.
Getting A Grip On Good Fireplace Design
Like all of good designing, the devil is in the details. In this case, that devil is that extra level of great design. There is something that happens in you when your home goes from okay to glam from a makeover. Focal points in the room are what help to create this type of dramatic shift. There is no bigger focal point in a well-designed room than a beautiful fireplace.
Fireplace design ideas could range from something that is more mid-century modern to something completely contemporary, even futuristic looking. Many modern home designs, with the emphasis on being green-friendly and sustainable, are incorporating more concrete elements. For some reason, concrete seems to have this appeal. However, because of how it is produced, many argue that it is a trade-off energetically between the inherent energy costs and its long-term sustainability.
Other green fireplace designs incorporate more reclaimed materials like wood and stone or metal. Reclaimed wood is great for fireplace mantel appeal and charm. There is nothing quite like a hundred-year-old piece of timber handsomely framing out your fireplace surround. Metal is quickly becoming a favorite for its ability to be crafted into many different styles to meet the contemporary homeowner’s needs. Just take a look at some newer fine home magazines to see this evidence in print.
Other contemporary touches are using stone materials in the design, whether they are natural stone or cultured stone products. The look of a natural stone, such as limestone, is very common and popular in the midwest. The mid-century modern home does well with this incorporated as part of its fireplace surround design. One could also use a large piece or two to set the fireplace hearth. Longer, narrower pieces have also been used to make the mantel shelf blend seamlessly into the surround.
The design of fireplaces evolves as do all home features. As we learn new ways to combine materials or simply regain our appreciation of older methods of building and living in harmony with our surroundings, we inevitably alter our design approaches. Giving your home a new appeal with a fireplace makeover might be the brightest and hottest idea you’ve had yet!
Outdoor Fireplace Designs
Indoor fireplaces have a certain set of codes and restrictions that are unique from outdoor fireplaces. Many newer homes are using gas-burning fireplaces that do not actually use real logs to ‘burn’ per se. These fireplaces have fixed doors and no need for chimneys. In this respect, some outdoor fireplaces are quite similar. The design of these types of indoor fireplaces with no burning wood also utilizes stone or tile as a common building choice.
Outdoor fireplaces are almost exclusively made of stone or masonry products. This only makes sense if you consider how much more exposed they are to the elements. Stone will naturally hold up much better in this scenario. Some outdoor fireplaces utilize a gas-burning system and like the indoor fireplaces mentioned, require no chimney or extended surround.
However, most outdoor fireplaces that burn real wood do require specific height and material requirements to meet safety codes. This doesn’t necessarily have to affect good design, just reflect it. The height of the outdoor fireplace helps disperse flames, smoke, and hot embers away from nearby building structures and occupants.
You might notice that many outdoor fireplaces do not have fireplace screens. There are a variety of fireplace designs for the indoors as well as out. There is a difference between an outdoor fireplace and a fire pit as well. For those seeking a special seating environment and elegant outdoor entertaining space, then the outdoor fireplace is for you. The design ideas and needs are different than the firepit. Most firepits have limited seating capacity for entertaining.