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Fireplaces – Form to Function


Now the clocks have gone back we are all spending more time at home and dreaming of a warm and cosy spot near the fire. Whether your fire is a working ‘real’ fire or has been replaced by a gas or electric version they are nearly always positioned centrally in the home due to their historic function as the provider of heat. This presents an opportunity for the surround, hearth and mantelpiece to be a central and focal feature of your home.

Of course, we all have different ideas of what constitutes a beautiful fireplace, and consequently, there’s a huge choice available. The fireplace you choose will depend on your budget, the size of your room and your house, your taste and your culture. I am fascinated with the various styles, patterns and decoration people choose for their fireplace surround as I believe it really symbolises your character and the style of your home.

Below are a couple of types from the many options available and the opportunities these fireplaces present to really evolve function into form; from minimalistic and modern to flamboyant and traditional.



The most authentic of them all with not only the warmth it gives but the smell and sound of burning wood filling your home. Often made out of stone and brick, open hearth fires are the most atmospheric out of all the different types of fireplaces.

In keeping with tradition, many of these fireplaces are adorned with impressive detail and opulence – it’s incredibly expensive to recreate this traditional idea but should you have the budget and the right type of house and space, it’s worth the investment. Chesneys is the perfect place to start your search as they offer a beautiful range of traditional styles.

Below, is a fireplace I absolutely adore that has been set off beautifully against the backdrop of De Gournay’s Abbotsford wallpaper, hand painted onto their Ice Blue India Tea Paper.




Here are a few more from Pinterest and Instagram to give other forms of inspiration:




These are a great option to consider if you don’t have a traditional chimney structure as they still create a very authentic warmth and ambience. From modern to traditional, there is a lot of choice so you can find the perfect burner to suit your style and space. They can add the needed touch to an otherwise simple room or be part of a more elaborate theme. From alpine chic to an inner city dwelling, wood burners suit all types of homes and can work equally well in a bedroom as they can in a large open plan living area.

We love this image from Lily Paulson-Ellis Interior Design of her own sitting room. Her lovely wood burner stove is placed in the original hearth space with a stunning antique mirror above and she has used our Free Fall 04 wallpaper to create statement shelving either side. Also included below are some other wood burners to give you other ideas of style and design.




There is a vast selection available to fit every type of style, room, home and budget. This type of fire works very well in bathrooms and kitchens, in fact any room of the house and can be the safer choice should you have a young family.

You can source very contemporary styles or more traditional, again completely depending on your personality and style. Below is an image from Dru Fire that have a stunning range of more modern fireplaces.





No matter your choice of fire, they present a wonderful opportunity to be creative. Below I have selected some images to inspire use of pattern, texture, colour and foliage.




I couldn’t resist an early mention of Christmas with fireplaces screaming to be decorated!  They really are the focal point for your Christmas decorations working well with garlands, wreaths, lanterns, pine cones, stockings and of course a place for your festive candles to sit.

Below are some of my favourite Christmas themed fireplaces:




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