September 23, 2016

Fireplace Decor

Karen Cooper

Happy fall! Now that fall is officially here, it’s time to start thinking about cooler weather, warm blankets, and fires in the fireplace. The fireplace is often the focal point of a living room or family room, so make it shine with these fireplace decor tips.

There are two surfaces of a fireplace that usually are decorated: the mantel and the hearth.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Mohawk Homescapes


Let’s start with how to decorate the mantel. There are a few things to keep in mind when decorating a mantel. First, think about adding something tall to counterbalance the height of the fireplace.

For example, in the above picture of our family room, I chose a large wooden clock to balance out the height of the fireplace. The size of the clock makes the fireplace area less bottom-heavy and draws your eye up to the ceiling, not just focusing on the fireplace itself.

Once you have an element that adds height, balance that height with objects on either side of the mantel. The objects on each side should be roughly the same size, which creates the horizontal balance.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Worthing Court Blog | Mohawk Homescapes


This fireplace is a great example of that balance. Suzy from Worthing Court used a gate to add height in the middle of the mantel, then balanced the height with a lantern on one side of the mantel and a vase of branches on the other. Even though the lantern and vase are different, because they are the same height, they give balance to the mantel.

One trick that the mantel above incorporates is using triangles in the design. Triangles are pleasing to the eye, and when objects are grouped together in a triangle shape, they look amazing.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | A Cultivated Nest | Mohawk Homescapes


See the triangles formed on this mantel from A Cultivated Nest? The different heights of the pumpkins on each side create those triangles, as well as maintain balance between the two sides of the mantel, on either side of the vase.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Our Southern Home | Mohawk Homescapes


Work with existing elements to create balance on a mantel. Above, Christy from Our Southern Home had sconces on either side of the mantel, so she could focus on the center of the mantel for her decor. The varying heights of the pumpkins, candlesticks, and baskets create interest and a beautiful vignette.

Now, let’s move down to the hearth.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Mohawk Homescapes


Having decorative items on the hearth also creates balance, but this time, with the mantel and area above it. By having decor on the wall above the fireplace, on the mantel, and on the hearth, you see the whole fireplace area and not just one part. Your eye travels from one spot to the others, whether from the hearth up, or the wall above the mantel down.

On my hearth, I have galvanized flower buckets on one side and old gears and wheels on the other. The metals go together without being too matchy, and the faux stems add an organic element.

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Mohawk Homescapes


Just make sure that, before you start a fire in the fireplace, you remove any materials from the hearth that could catch fire or get too hot!

You can even decorate the firebox, if you are no longer using the fireplace. Lots of people add candelabra to the firebox, but for something different…

Fireplace Decor | Karen Cooper | Dogs Don't Eat Pizza | Duke Manor Farm | Mohawk Homescapes


Laura from Duke Manor Farm created a fire screen using wood-slice fabric! Since the fireplace no longer is useable, she built a frame for the opening and covered it in this rustic fabric. How creative is that?

Want to paint your fireplace? Check out this post.

Make your fireplace a focal point in your home. With these tips, you can decorate yours like a pro!

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