I love fireplaces - all fireplaces! From traditional to modern to stone to wood to even glass fireplaces. Yes, we even have an ultra modern fireplace that is glass! And I love all types of fireplaces, from the electric to the gas to the wood burning. The gas starters with real wood are simply my favorite but shhhh don't tell anyone, the other fireplaces may become jealous.
The Victorian era rushed in with an abundance of ornamental fireplaces. Yet, the function was beyond frugal, it was the only means of warmth. Today many are returning to the wood burning stove and fireplaces as a way to augment the utility bills. The fun today, is we can even install an electric fireplace - imagine no mess and yet no wonderful aroma of the wood burning.
For decades the outdoor fireplace was abandoned. Now the outdoor rooms complete with a fireplace are chic. My favorite outdoor fireplace is pictured last. That is the ultimate, a light chilly breeze and the night sky aware and the fireplace roaring with bright light and warmth.
Carved Stone Traditional Fireplace
Elegant Modern Fireplace Made of Stone
Fireplace as the Center of the Room Decor
Fireplace Home Decor Options
Exquisite White Carved Marble Fireplace
Large Glass Modern Fireplace
Fireplaces Are An Investment
The kitchen is often touted to "sell" a home. Yet, a fireplace has the same effect. Refacing your fireplace often is well within a reasonable price tag. Adding a fireplace or moving a fireplace, on the other hand, often will not have a payback value other than your personal satisfaction.
One home I owned I wanted to move the fireplace from one side to the other side of the room. The foundation, the chimney are major structural elements even in a newer home. I ended up selling the home and making a great some of money but if I had moved that fireplace I feel those dollars would never have been recouped.
Choose your battles, prioritize the remodeling projects by the potential ROI.
Fireplace with a flat screen above the mantel - any guy will tell you - this is time and money well spent. Yes, ladies the décor suffers but in the eyes of the male buyer, having that television front and center connects with him emotionally as he envisions hosting the various sporting events on that television screen.
Infrared Fireplace Insert
Speaking of investment, do consider adding in or changing out your gas log with a new technology called infrared. This heat is very special - it warms the objects not just the room. It is more efficient heat, a cleaner heat and also safer.
The infrared fireplace is a great option for the basement remodel. Do ask about ventilation. Do check the square footage that fireplace is rate for and do shop different stores and compare their prices.
As I roam the world wide web, I am seeing claims about the health benefits of infrared saunas. I don't know if that has not merit but I do know our space heater is infrared and it far exceeds the quality of our ceramic heaters. What is great and I can attest to from first hand experience is the infrared does not dry the skin or the wood furniture in the same manner as the real fireplace or the ceramic heaters that we can used in the past.
Personal Reflections on Fireplaces
I find all the fireplaces alluring. The main item when designing your home is to keep the integrity of your home in mind especially with respect to the choice of the fireplace. My personal favorite is the old world traditional fireplace in carved stone yet this fireplace would not work well for most homes.
Consider all the design options and the function.
The home where I grew up, we had a traditional brick fireplace with a cooking insert that sadly we never used. Looking back that was a lost opportunity for our family.
Many real estate agents and experts will highlight the home's kitchen. For me, I want a grand and glorious fireplace. This identifies the home and it correctly identifies my personality - large, lively and warm! Or at least the personality I desire or dream of having!
The outdoor fireplace is a completely different category and not covered in sufficient detail here.
Many homes have two fireplaces - the main floor and the basement. The basement fireplace too is a story for another day. Basement remodeling without a fireplace in the Midwest may be qualify for a crime against architecture - if there were such a thing but of course! Why remodel a basement without a fireplace?
Our current home has two fireplaces covered up. Don't feel bad for us, the remodel included a 24' fireplace that graces the entire east side of our home. Some of the stones from the original 1929 fireplace were repurposed and included in the fireplace. I will add in a photo for you to review - see if you can pick out the 1929 pieces of Wisconsin stone!
Moral of the Story
Natural stone, indigenous to the area is always the best choice. This is a sure fire winner. Oh, sorry for the pun! Just could not help myself!
Fireplace - Wisconsin Stone with 1929 Stone
Frank Lloyd Wright's Favorite Fireplace
Speaking of favorite fireplaces, check out the fireplace below from the Geneval Lake hotel. This fireplace is said to have been the favorite of Frank Lloyd Wright. It is classic Wright style with organic yet streamlined lines.
Geneva Lake Hotel Fireplace
Accessories Around the Fireplace Add to the Charm
Fireplace Home Décor with Eggplant Color Painted Walls
Traditional Fireplaces Updated
Whatever your décor, there is a fireplace available to match both your tastes and your personality. From modern with marble to modern with wood to modern with simply glass. If tradition is more your style, check out the updated traditional styles of fireplaces. All the great elements of beautiful wood and marble but updated to elevate the design standards to spectacular.
The beauty of the fireplace is in the details - the molding on the trim, the color of the stone or the marble and placement in the room.
A raised hearth is charming.
Take note, on some of the fireplaces how small the opening is. While the fireplace mantle and hearth are large, the interior of the fireplace can be a different size and proportion to work well. Perhaps a little less traditional in proportion but yet still equally delightful option.
The fireplace can be placed in your family room, your bedroom, many have added to the kitchen too! And the outdoor fireplace remains my personal delight with the night sky engulfing and the fireplace glow pouring out.
The complimentary elements of both wood and stone/marble are perhaps my favorite. The function of the glass fireplace concerns me - I do windows but not fireplace windows - that is a nasty task! I can handle the small fireplace doors but look at the at glass fireplace - it would take days to clean!
Pack up your marshmallows and chocolate and get outdoors and settle down next to the beautiful and completely functional outdoor fireplace made of stone.
Outdoor Stone Fireplace
Stone Fireplace Mantel on Amazon
© 2010 Ken Kline
Ken Kline (author) from Chicago, Illinois on May 22, 2015:
Thank you very much for sharing.
Recently I came across this company that caught my attention:
Of course, nothing can beat the smell of a real fire let alone a bonfire under the stars at night.
Kristina Appelt on May 19, 2015:
You convinced me that I should get my own fireplace!
Till now me and my hubby allways used this virtual fireplace:
Since I was a kid I loved falling asleep to the sound of a fire, but the virtual doesn't compare to a real one. :)
Ken Kline (author) from Chicago, Illinois on February 17, 2013:
Remodeling is always about the visual. To have the vision must be the precursor to the funding. Amazing usually money can resolve anything but it cannot resolve the vision - unless perhaps you hire a design pro but then you still must provide some sort of design guidance.
I wish for one real and one gas fireplace and then the house would be complete. Love the smell and the tending of a real fireplace.
Justsilvie on January 28, 2013:
Great Hub! Love the pictures and ideas!
Kelly Kline Burnett from Madison, Wisconsin on November 15, 2010:
I have never heard or even seen the Cody Foster decorative items - wow! Too neat! Thank you so much for sharing - LOVE it when I learn something new - those are wonderful.
boostergold on November 15, 2010:
Those are some cool fire places My wife will go crazy for these. This is going to be better than a cody foster Christmas!
Kelly Kline Burnett from Madison, Wisconsin on November 01, 2010:
Kids Toy Box,
Wow! I didn't even know. I have been so busy. Thank you for telling me I hit this MAJOR milestone.
I love home improvement, it can be artistry in its own manner. The styles I hope are appealing to many and most importantly inspire!
kids-toy-box on October 31, 2010:
Yet another stylish hub! Love pic no2. Congratualtions on reaching 100 000 views!here's to many more.
angelaglancy from Seattle on July 17, 2010:
The fireplace surround really helps to define the style of any room. Nice hub.
twogroce on July 17, 2010:
Very pretty, I really like the outdoor fireplace. The stylehive is nice as well but it looks to be a bit much to keep it clear. Nice hub, good job!