The fireplace is the focal point of a room. The eye is drawn to the empty space soon to be filled with light; whether this be the blue flickers of a gas flame, white hot coals, the amber hue of burning logs or a modern display panel. Surrounding this mesmerising display is the mantle, which can be adorned with eclectic decorations, simple touches, or topped by a mirror to create the illusion of space.
You need to decide what you want from the fireplace; is it merely aesthetics or heat-output? A gas fire is excellent for quick and convenient heat. There is a wide range of gas stoves on the market today, ranging from traditional to modern styles. If you would prefer a solid fuel fire, you can choose from a multi-fuel, log or coal fire. These fires are designed to burn smokeless fuels, where the ash will drop into a hidden ash pan whence it is done. A wood-burning fire is one of the most eco-friendly options. They create a stunning, natural focal point with flickering flames, enticing aroma and unparalleled heat. Electric fires carry a stigma due to poor performance in previous years, this is no longer the case. Electric fire technology has come on leaps and bounds! Electric fires come in a range of shapes and styles that can be deceptively traditional, or artistically modern such as hanging fireplaces.
You should consider the aesthetics of both the fireplace and the mantle. A modern place requires a more modern mantle, where a traditional style can be elevated by painted wood. Simplicity is key when installing a fireplace; the decorations on the mantle can be easily changed to update the look, but to regularly replace the stove would be difficult.
It is advised that you seek professional advice on which type of fire is appropriate for your home dependant on the flume, heat output, fuel sources and fitting. If your home has a chimney breast, you will likely be able to install a wood-burning fire or traditional gas fire. If you have a more modern home without a chimney breast; you should consider an electric fire or one where a two-pipe system can be installed to allow for a gas-flame. In some urban areas there is a restriction on ‘smoke control’ due to the Clean Air Act. Many fireplaces nowadays come equipped with technology to make this act null and void, even if you want a solid fuel fire, simply ask your advisor for details!