The fireplace is traditionally considered to be the very heart of the home, the place where families would gather around for warmth. A place to cook and a place for dreamily contemplating lost thought. Today in the age of environmental awareness the fire may no longer be primarily coal fuelled but it nonetheless occupies pride of place in the modern living area, an ancestral throwback to our primordial past.
As with the vast range of modern methods of fuelling the contemporary fire there is a wide array of decorative options to make the fireplace a worthy focus of the living space in the home.
Fireplace surround ideas
The choice of finish for the fireplace should generally be considered as part of an overall strategy in terms of where the fireplace is being located, what type of fuel is going to be used and what are the materials being used to decorate and furnish the space itself.
Bringing warmth to a room: Wooden fireplace ideas
Wood is a very popular choice for flooring today because of its natural and organic feel, its intrinsic warmth and the extraordinary range of wood finishes. From engineered to distressed the timber floor is perfectly complimented when used with a wood fireplace surround, using either a contrasting or matching style wood. A modern or rustic style fireplace surround can be achieved with wood.
Marble fireplace surround: From classic to contemporary
The classic houses of the aristocracy from the Georgian and Victorian period featured beautiful crafted fireplace surrounds of marble which survive today as works of art. The contemporary equivalent considers the material more as a sheer clean surface. Its beauty resides in the pattern of eins and textures running through the marble.
The Steel fireplace surround; Contemporary sculptural feature
For a highly contemporary approach the use of steel for the fireplace surround converts the fire into a modern sculpture. The steel fireplace surround can provide an artistic feature which if combined with a special treatment for the metal can make an avant-garde statement.
Brick fireplace surrounds; Timeless modernity
Although once upon a time the brick fireplace surround was ubiquitous, especially in mid 19th Century modern houses, nowadays it is slightly out of favour. Nonetheless brick is the perfect choice for a more rustic fireplace surround with a warm patina that beautifully frames the lapping flames of the fireplace.
Scale and the appropriate size
Modern fireplace surrounds tend to work best when they are size appropriate for the room where are installed. The style may be rustic or modern but in order to be convincing the fireplace surround should be the right size. A large fireplace surround works best when greater ceiling height is available and the space itself is generous. For homes that are more compartmentalised, with more intimate rooms such as for bedrooms a small fireplace surround is ideal.