Cold evenings in Chicagoland are the perfect opportunity for families to stay inside, watch movies, spend time together and enjoy the warmth of their homes. And, if you have one, there is nothing cozier than curling up by the fireplace on a winter evening! If you are already feeling those hibernation vibes and want to hunker down for the winter, then you are probably spending a lot of time in front of your fireplace.
Between advances in technology and interior design, home fireplaces have become fashionable as well as functional. Here are some trends that you might see if you’re touring new homes this year, or simply thinking about updating your own fireplace.
Fireplace finishes have changed over the years but something we are seeing in a lot of new construction homes is a sleek and minimalist approach to fireplace design. Materials like metal, black and white marble or neutral tile are simple, classic and streamlined for a contemporary living or family room that will work well with almost any furnishings or design preferences. Homeowners can balance stark simplicity of sleeker fireplaces with shapes and textures — like a geometric shaped mirror or a bright piece of art.
Wood Burning Fireplaces
Once passed over in favor of the tech-savvier gas fireplace that can be turned on by flipping a switch, there is definitely a romantic appeal to wood-burning fireplaces, particularly in homes where there is more than one fireplace. As an added bonus, decorative spaces for wood storage can add architectural interest, too.
One of the leading trends in gas fireplace design is a larger viewable window to the fireplace. The larger the better! It provides a sense of added elegance and prestige. While gas fireplace have historically been rectangular in shape, they have expanded in recent years to be wider and more square shaped. This is especially eye-catching and dramatic if the fireplace is framed with light stonework to accentuate the wide frame and dark space.
With open floor plans becoming more and more common, two or three sided fireplaces with sleek styling and elegant accents are making a comeback. Large corner or multi-sided fireplaces have become a great way to integrate a fireplace into a larger room, keeping an open floor plan with the added benefit of being able to enjoy a fireplace from more than one angle.
Fireplaces that aren’t large and square this year will be long and linear. Linear fireplaces can stretch as long as the full length of a wall. Generally, they deliver a more modern look with monotone colors and clean lines finishing off the trend. Home builders love linear fireplaces because they can be more versatile into a wider range of interior design styles and offer a more understated look. A linear interior fireplace can completely transform a space, especially if you add other design elements like a stone surround or a floating shelf mantle. This look creates a modern, but classic look that would fit the décor of most living room styles.
New materials for construction and renovations allowing home builders to create homes that are more tightly insulated, and made from energy conscious materials. Therefore, fireplaces no longer need to heat homes as intensely as they once did. Heat controlled gas fireplaces allow you to lower the heat output of the fireplace, but still enjoy the benefits that a fireplace offers.
Some gas fireplaces also have programmable remotes and thermostats, allowing you to maintain a consistent temperature or set your fireplace to turn on or off during specific times. If you are looking for ways to upgrade the look of your own fireplace this year, I hope these tips and trends provide you with inspiration!