What Should I Put On The Sides Of My Fireplace?

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What Should I Put On The Sides Of My Fireplace?

You should put a mix of functional and aesthetic options when decorating the sides of your fireplace.

Popular choices include mantel shelves for displaying items, built-in bookshelves for storage and decor, cabinets or display cabinets to hide clutter, wall art or mirrors for elegance, wall sconces for ambient lighting, decorative columns or pilasters for a traditional look, and decorative tiles or stone for a focal point.

Keep the room’s size, dimensions, and personal style in mind to create a cohesive and inviting space.

Do Both Sides Of The Fireplace Have To Match?

Do Both Sides Of The Fireplace Have To Match?

No, both sides of the fireplace do not have to match. While a symmetrical and balanced design is traditional, modern interior design often embraces asymmetry and eclectic styles.

Whether to match or not the sides of the fireplace depends on your personal taste and the overall design theme you want to achieve.

If you prefer a classic and formal look, matching the sides of the fireplace can create a sense of balance and harmony in the room.

Symmetry can be visually appealing and is a common choice in more traditional or formal settings.

Embracing asymmetry can add a contemporary, casual, or eclectic vibe to the space.

It allows for more creative freedom and can be particularly useful when dealing with limited space or unusual architectural features.

Should I Decorate The Walls Around My Fireplace?

Decorating the walls around your fireplace can significantly enhance the overall look and feel of the room. It provides an excellent opportunity to create a focal point and showcase your style. 

Here are several reasons why you should consider decorating the walls around your fireplace:

  • Enhanced Aesthetics: Wall decorations can add beauty, depth, and character to the space, making it visually appealing and inviting.
  • Personal Expression: Decorating the walls allows you to express your personality and taste through artwork, mirrors, or other decorative elements.
  • Emphasize the Fireplace: Well-chosen decorations can draw attention to the fireplace, making it a standout feature in the room.
  • Complementary Design: Coordinating the wall decor with the fireplace’s style and the room’s overall design creates a cohesive and harmonious atmosphere.
  • Versatility: The walls around the fireplace offer a versatile canvas for various decor options, such as paintings, photographs, tapestries, or decorative shelves.
  • Warmth and Comfort: Thoughtful wall decorations can create a cozy and comfortable ambiance, especially during colder months.
  • Balance and Proportion: Properly chosen decor elements can create a balanced look and enhance the room’s proportions.
  • Personalization: Customizing the wall decor allows you to tailor the space to your preferences, making it uniquely yours.

Ways To Decorate Walls On Either Side of Fireplace

Decorating the walls on either side of your fireplace opens up a world of possibilities to enhance the ambiance and aesthetics of your living space.

Whether you prefer a traditional, contemporary, or eclectic style, there are numerous creative approaches to transform these areas into captivating focal points. 

1. Paint

Painting the walls on either side of your fireplace

Painting the walls on either side of your fireplace offers an affordable and versatile way to set the tone and style of the space. Choosing the right colors can significantly impact the room’s ambiance.

Soft, neutral tones like beige, cream, or light gray can create a calming backdrop that complements various interior styles. These colors provide an excellent canvas for other decor elements to shine.

Experiment with bold accent colors like deep blues, rich burgundies, or vibrant greens if you crave a more dramatic effect. An accent wall on one side of the fireplace can add depth and create an eye-catching focal point.

2. Wallpaper

Wallpaper offers an array of patterns, textures, and designs to elevate the walls around your fireplace. It can add depth and visual interest that paint alone cannot achieve.

Consider bold patterns, such as floral prints, geometric designs, or textured wallpapers, to create a striking feature wall. 

Choose understated patterns or delicate textures for a touch of elegance without overpowering the room’s overall design.

Ensure the wallpaper complements the room’s furniture, rugs, and other elements to achieve a harmonious look.

3. Artwork

Artwork can inject personality and creativity into the walls around your fireplace. It provides an opportunity to express your style and preferences.

Choose artwork that aligns with the overall theme and style of the room. Consider the size of the painting concerning the wall space and furniture to create a well-balanced arrangement. 

Larger pieces can be focal points, while smaller ones can be grouped for a gallery effect.

Experiment with different frame styles or create a gallery wall to showcase a collection of artwork, photographs, or decorative mirrors.

4. Mirrors

Mirrors are an excellent addition to the fireplace walls as they enhance the aesthetics and reflect light, making the room appear more spacious and brighter.

Choose mirrors that fit the wall space appropriately. A large mirror can create a sense of openness, while multiple small mirrors can add a touch of whimsy.

Select frames that complement the room’s decor. Ornate frames work well in traditional settings, while minimalist frames suit modern interiors—place mirrors across from windows or light sources to reflect natural light and brighten the room.

Also, consider positioning mirrors to capture attractive views or exciting decor elements.

5. Bookshelf

Bookshelves flanking the fireplace offer both functionality and aesthetic appeal. They allow you to showcase books, collectibles, and decor items while creating a balanced and symmetrical look.

Custom or built-in bookshelves can be tailored to fit the exact dimensions of your fireplace walls, maximizing storage and display space.

Ensure the shelves on both sides of the fireplace are equal in height and width to achieve balance and symmetry.

Organize books vertically and horizontally, intersperse with decorative items, and add indoor plants to bring life to the shelves.

6. Shelves

Decorate Walls On Either Side of Fireplace with shelves

Aside from bookshelves, consider incorporating additional shelves that go beyond conventional styles. Floating shelves or corner shelves can add a touch of uniqueness to the walls around your fireplace.

Utilize corner spaces around the fireplace for triangular or curved shelves, ideal for displaying small sculptures, plants, or candles.

Arrange shelves to showcase a particular theme or color scheme, adding a curated and cohesive aspect to the decor.

7. Furniture

Placing furniture on the walls around your fireplace can add functionality and style

Placing furniture on the walls around your fireplace can add functionality and style. Positioning chairs or small benches on either side of the fireplace creates a cozy and intimate seating area.

Console tables with decorative items or lamps can accentuate the fireplace and offer additional display space.

8. Wall Lights

Wall lights or sconces can add a touch of elegance and ambiance to the walls around your fireplace.

Choose wall lights that complement the room’s decor and place them strategically to highlight artwork or decor elements.

Consider installing dimmer switches to control the intensity of the wall lights, creating various moods according to the occasion.

9. Plants

Introducing greenery with plants can breathe life into the walls around your fireplace

Introducing greenery with plants can breathe life into the walls around your fireplace, adding a fresh and natural touch.

Choose decorative planters or pots that suit the room’s style and accommodate the size of the plants you wish to display.

Consider wall-mounted planters or vertical gardens to save space and create a unique visual display.

Should the Fireplace Be Lighter Or Darker Than the Walls?

Should the Fireplace Be Lighter Or Darker Than the Walls?

The decision to have the fireplace lighter or darker than the walls largely depends on the desired visual effect and the overall design scheme you want to achieve in the room. Both options can work well, but they create different atmospheres.

A lighter-colored fireplace can draw attention to itself, becoming a focal point in the room. If you have an intricate or beautifully designed fireplace, showcasing it with a lighter color can be an excellent choice.

A darker fireplace can exude luxury and sophistication, particularly with rich textures or intricate detailing. Darker hues can create a cozy and intimate atmosphere, making the room feel more comfortable, especially in larger spaces or high ceilings.

If you need help deciding whether to go lighter or darker:

  1. Consider finding a balance that harmonizes with the overall room design.
  2. Choose a fireplace color that is a shade or two lighter or darker than the walls to maintain a cohesive and elegant look.
  3. Opt for neutral colors for the walls and fireplace, ensuring they complement each other and create a serene and timeless ambiance.

Should I Paint the Fireplace?

Painting the fireplace is a popular and effective way to update its appearance and match it with your interior design.

However, careful consideration is essential, including evaluating the fireplace’s material and condition, considering your aesthetic preferences, and understanding the maintenance benefits.

When painting, opt for heat-resistant paint for safety, ensure proper preparation and primer, choose a suitable color and finish, and consider consulting a professional if needed. 

What To Put In Front Of The Fireplace?

Here are several options to consider for decorating the area in front of the fireplace:

  • Hearth Rug or Carpet: A hearth rug or a small carpet placed in front of the fireplace adds a decorative touch and protects the floor from sparks and ash, providing a designated area for relaxation in front of the fire.

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  • Fireplace Screen: A fireplace screen is a practical and stylish addition that sits in front of the fire to prevent sparks and embers from escaping while still allowing the warmth and glow of the fire to be visible. 
  • Decorative Firewood Holder: If your fireplace is wood-burning, consider using a decorative firewood holder or log basket to store logs neatly in front of the fireplace. 

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  • Decorative Accessories: Place decorative accessories on the hearth or mantel shelf before the fireplace to add visual interest. This could include vases, candles, small sculptures, or decorative items that complement the room’s overall style.
  • Floor Cushions or Ottomans: This provides additional seating and encourages relaxation around the warmth of the fire.

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Comfort Memory Foam Meditation Floor Pillow

  • Indoor Plants: The natural touch of greenery can freshen up the space and add a vibrant element to the room.
  • Decorative Baskets or Storage: Use decorative baskets or storage containers before the fireplace to hold blankets, pillows, or other cozy essentials. 
  • Seating Arrangement: If space permits, arrange seating furniture like chairs or a small bench in front of the fireplace. This creates a welcoming seating area for conversations or relaxation by the fire.

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  • Personalized Decor: Add personal touches like family photographs, artwork, or sentimental items on the hearth or mantel shelf to make the fireplace area uniquely yours.

Balancing functionality and aesthetics is essential when decorating in front of the fireplace. Ensure that any items placed in front of the fireplace are safe and can be easily moved when the fireplace is in use. 

Can I hang Anything Above the Fireplace?

Hanging various items above the fireplace can create an attractive focal point, but safety and aesthetics should be considered.

Options include wall art, mirrors, clocks, sconces, tapestries, statement decor, decorative plates, wreaths, wall shelves, and mounted TVs.

Ensure items are securely anchored, avoid heat-sensitive objects, consider proportions, maintain aesthetic balance, and avoid flammable materials.

You can confidently create a captivating and personalized fireplace display in your living space.

Regnar James

Hey there, home improvement aficionados! I'm Regnar, the quirky brain behind this Home Improvement blog.
I have 10 years of engineering experience and problem-solving skills in the building industry.
In 2021, I took the plunge into homeownership, scoring an ancient abode that's equal parts charming and... well, let's just say it's a "fixer-upper" in the truest sense. Owning a house gave me an idea to start this website.
So, grab a tool belt and join me in making home improvement a laugh-out-loud adventure! 🏠🔧😄

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