Fireplaces may seem like a fairly simple part of the home. There’s the hearth in front, the area where the fire actually burns, the mantel, and usually brick or stone surrounding the fireplace that goes up the wall. Over the years, the fireplace has gone from the only source of heating the room to a decorative feature that is no longer found in every house built. As a more decorative statement piece, the fireplace has seen a number of trends come and go. Here are some of the latest fireplace trends that you simply can’t ignore.
Fireplaces Are Easier to Use
The classic fireplace burned wood, but today, that’s no longer the case. Gas fireplaces are much easier to start and are more energy efficient, while direct venting units have made them safer. These fireplaces can be started by remote, and many have fans that help blow the heat into the room. These fireplaces don’t require nearly as much work to get going, and they don’t let in the elements. The creation of gas fireplaces freed the space from its traditional look and let interior designers create some truly interesting fireplace trends.
There are also electric fireplaces. There’s no gas needed at all—the flames are simulated. Many of these electric fireplaces are based on space heaters. They also often give you the options of putting out heat, working as a light source, or providing both heat and light. Some are portable, too, so you can move them wherever you want. All you need is an outlet.
Changes in Size and Shape
The first fireplace trend to look at is how the fireplace has changed size and shape over the years. Fireplaces are now rectangular and may be three or four feet in length. They can take up a large amount of space on a wall. But these fireplaces, though very large or very long, still have something of a traditional look to them. However, circular fireplaces are a trend that bucks tradition. These fireplaces may have mirrors in them that reflect the light and make the space look like a long tunnel. Arched fireplaces are another option that gives the space a unique look.
Going big isn’t the only trend in fireplace design. Some designers have gone small, creating little eight-inch fireplaces in the bedroom or bathroom. These little fireplaces are quite shallow, too, since gas fireplaces don’t have to fit logs. You can use them to heat up small spaces or bring the unique look of a burning fire into areas that don’t have space for the more traditional fireplace.
Another fun trend is to change up the style of the fireplace so that it’s not just flames coming out of logs (or fake logs, in the case of gas fireplaces). Instead, designers went for very different and unique styles. For example, there are fireplaces that are very tall and look like they have trees burning within them. Others may have the flames coming out of what looks like a set of torches. They’re on metal poles that have glass globes on the top. They’re great for outdoor fireplaces because they can be placed around a patio to provide light while also creating an amazing ambiance.
Transforming the Flame
The flames inside the fireplace were, until recently, something that simply couldn’t be changed. Now, though, thanks to gas and electric fireplaces, you can actually change how the flame looks. You can add certain products that, when burned, make the flames different colors. Electric fireplaces with simulated fire can produce any color flame you want, even multi-colored ones. Obviously, doing so will make it clear that the fireplace isn’t a traditional one, but that may be fine. Most of these fireplaces include a remote, too, so you can change them from standard to bright pink or rainbow flames whenever you want.
Freed From the Hearth
Another trend you’re likely to see thanks to the electric fireplace involves where the fireplace is located in the home. Since electric fireplaces don’t need a chimney or hearth, they can be installed just about anywhere. Some are as thin as modern TVs, so you can wall-mount them anywhere you want. You could hang one of these fireplaces above your bathtub to create a romantic atmosphere and provide some heat in the winter, or you could add several to a remodeled basement to keep it warm and provide light.
These are just a few of the newest trends related to fireplaces. If you’re building a home and want to include a fireplace, take a moment to explore what modern options are available. You may find something very trendy that you love.