There is something magic about spring. Trees and flowers start to bloom, the days become longer and the nights shorter, children go out and play, spring cleaning and garage sales start to happen and we get busy assisting our clients to redesign their place. One of the most common questions I hear from homeowners that live in a house with a conventional fireplace is what can you do to make my fireplace pretty for the summer?
That is a great question, since not every person lives in a very cold climate area and neither uses the fireplace equally. If the homeowner has an electric fireplace that is mounted into the wall, there is no much to change when compared to a conventional fireplace and by conventional I mean the ones with a firebox where kids expect to see Santa climbing up and down during the holidays. If you are a proud owner of a conventional fireplace here are some ideas for you to decorate your fireplace for the summer months, regardless if you have a very traditional or an ultra-modern one.
Play with candles:
Candles are probably the most common and affordable solution to fill the empty firebox during the months when your fireplace is not in use. If you like candles place several candles inside your firebox. Play with sizes, shapes, colors, scents to make it very unique. Feel free to add some candle holders too and don’t forget to incorporate some marble or glass beads into your design to add some interest to it.
Decorate with plants:
Depending on the location of your fireplace and the extension of the heart, consider surrounding it with colorful plants. If you have plenty of light coming in opt for natural flowers, herbs and foliage; otherwise, use silk flowers to create a custom arrangement for your fireplace.
Create a meditation area:
Depending on the surroundings of your fireplace and your lifestyle, creating a meditation nook can be a great way to use the fireplace during the warmer months. Start by placing a mirror in the back of the firebox, add an image of your meditation icon, and surround it with candles. By doing this, once the candles are lit, it will reflect nicely in the mirror, creating a very relaxing atmosphere. On the outside, where the heart is, place few pillows and other meditation accessories or small plants.
Set up a display area for your best photo or artwork:
One of the easiest ways to make your fireplace as part of your décor is to treat it as being the largest object of an art collection. Once the winter is gone and your fireplace is no longer being used, clean the firebox entirely and then cover it with clear glass beads or white marble beads. On the outside where the heart is, place one large scale artwork or picture frame. A black and white photo mounted on a black frame with white matte is a great option. If you have a mantle, clean it up and remove any accessory from it. Above the fireplace where the over mantle is, hang a large mirror or an image (or photo) that will complement the one sitting on the heart. (See photo attached)
Cover it up completely
If you don’t really want to see your fireplace during the warmer months or if you are looking to have a new design of the room where your fireplace is without redoing the entire space, consider the option of working with personalized screens or room dividers on a large scale. They are mobile, easy to be customized, and they will be a great addition to the space. For example, old louvered closet doors can be easily put together to create a one-of-a-kind divider. If you do that, think about painting them in different colors, and selecting objects to hang on those doors to produce a very unique conversational piece. Re-invent your room, and move a piece of furniture or two if necessary.
Set up a vignette using some of your favorite vases:
Select some of your favorite vases and group them inside the firebox to produce a unique vignette. When doing this think of size, shape, color, and pattern. Have fun!
VK Sustainable Concepts’ Principal Andrea Vollf, LEED AP ID+C, is a registered interior designer and sustainability professional with over fifteen years of experience in the interior design and marketing industries. Ms. Vollf is an active member of the U.S. Green Building Council – Illinois Chapter, with in‐depth knowledge of all aspects of Sustainability – Social, Environmental and Economic. Connect with Andrea on Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
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