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Interiors| Fireplace design for those long S

winter nights.......

o, we’ve had the longest day and as far as daylight is concerned it’s all downhill from here! Before we know it, we’ll have the heating on again ( although maybe you’ve

never switched it off? ) and looking to snuggle up in front of the fire.

A fireplace can be an invaluable focal point when designing a room layout and can save the feeling that your furniture is arranged around the ‘altar of the television’. There are many and varied options for your fireplace design in 2012, both modern and traditional sit alongside quirky.

a contemporary design scheme. These also come with the convenience to place them anywhere in the room.

The most recent innovation in fireplaces is the gel or bio ethanol fire which stands alone, produces heat and an attractive flame but doesn’t give off smoke and needs no flue, power or gas connection. These fires can be placed wherever they are needed in a room and don’t even need to go against a wall so if you wanted to use a fire as a room divider in a long lounge or lounge diner this is a perfect solution. There are also fantastic flueless gas fires around which can be bought as a whole unit with a traditional surround or as a fairly flat wall hanging unit that can be hung like a picture wherever takes your fancy?! Smeg produce a range of these fireplaces including a retro 50’s look design in all the lovely paint colours similar to their popular fridges. There are also amazing electric fires available which usually come as a complete unit with the surround and fit well into

If you are lucky enough to have a chimney, a real fire can be great, although a lot of work to clean up every day! A cleaner alternative is to have an open gas fire and both real fuel and gas open fires come in a huge variety of styles with many different options for surrounds. Find a website where you can see how different surrounds would look with inserts and hearths or simply cut and paste pictures to help you choose from all the combinations. A ‘hole in the wall’ fireplace is a neat option where a niche is opened out in the chimney breast with a fire basket sitting inside, this could even be covered by sliding panels when the fire is not in use. Paint the inside of the fireplace in a boldly contrasting colour to the wall colour and it makes a fabulous design statement. Using a bold paint colour or a highly patterned wallpaper on the chimney breast wall creates interest and usually frightens people less than committing to boldness in the whole room. With a simple boxy fireplace an extra long shelf could be fitted above it as an alternative twist to the mantelpiece.

A new fireplace definitely commands lots of research to find what you like, what suits the space and what would work in your home so happy shopping!

Homes 50 To advertise please telephone 020 8275 5307 or email: &


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