It’s rare that you’ll find a functioning wood-burning fireplace in a modern home, and even rarer that we’ll install one. Maintenance alone can be cost-prohibitive, not to mention the difficulty of use for those unfamiliar with them. For most of our projects, homeowners will decide between natural gas and electric. Natural gas fireplaces are more common, and many people prefer the real flame they produce. We still get lots of requests to install these fireplaces, but we’re shifting more toward electric these days. Not only are electric fireplaces better for the environment, but they’re also cheaper and easier to install. Because electric fireplaces are not attached to a gas line, you can get more creative with placement, and their heat output is just as strong.
Terrific Tile Options
From marble to wood tones, there are a variety of different styles you can go with when decorating your fireplace. One design element we love is tile because it provides a custom, budget-friendly look that can immediately light up a space. Framing here is important, so you’ll want to hire an expert who will help you pick out a tile that’s appropriate for the space and install it with an edge-perfect finish.
Decorating the Mantel
We love repurposed beams and wood features for our mantels, but that doesn’t mean you can’t go sleek and modern. It won’t surprise you to hear that we get a lot of requests for wall-mounted TVs over a fireplace, so a mantel makes a great place to hide unsightly cables. Just leave yourself enough space for any decorative or sentimental items you might want to include as well.
1. Sometimes all you need is a stunning hearth to take your fireplace to the next level. This Property Brothers: Forever Home fireplace (see above) already had beautiful original brick that just needed some love, so we installed tile across the nearby floor to draw the eye toward warm flames.
2. You don’t need a fire for a decorative fireplace to create a warm, inviting look. This Spanish Colonial’s beautiful angles are a feature unto themselves! We went for a full whitewash to get a cohesive look, with a decorative tile that really pops against the natural wood logs.
3. We like to think outside the box, and with this three-sided fireplace, we realized we could take it outside the living room as well. Thanks to its custom design and our open-concept layout, this fireplace will pull double (or triple!) duty in providing warmth and comfort to multiple rooms.
4. A new custom tile for your fireplace can be the secret ingredient that makes a room pop. Easy on the budget and easy to personalize, you can experiment with bolder, more unique design choices than you might in a larger space.
5. If you’re doing a full room renovation, it’s the perfect time to ensure both your design and your fireplace are perfectly centered and balanced. And because we’re always looking for creative storage solutions, these benches flank the hearth while also providing areas to store blankets and board games.
“A well-designed fireplace immediately becomes the focal point of a welcoming gathering space. When planning a living room refresh, design your seating layout around access to your new attention-getter.”—Jonathan
Fire in Style
Transport wood to your fireplace without any mess with this Waxed-Canvas Log Carrier ($129).
Clean up ashes in style with these elegant brass Fireplace Tools ($275).
This Meyerson Electric Fireplace by Scott Living ($399) will add equal parts charm and cozy to any room.
By Drew & Jonathan | Home photographs courtesy of HGTV | All product photographs courtesy of the brands
This article originally appeared in the Holiday 2022 issue of Drew + Jonathan Reveal, Drew & Jonathan’s home and lifestyle magazine.