Thursday, March 27, 2014

Guest post- Popular fireplace decor and design options for your home!

This article is provided by Andrea Vollf.

It is already March and thanks to mother nature, we have been blessed with a long, really long, winter season this year. Even though many stores have been featuring spring gears, the temperature remains low. Therefore, until Spring arrives and the weather becomes nicer, let us make most of our fireplace season.

Although a lot of homes are now opting for electric fireplaces for several reasons, from cost to its eco-friendly benefits, many homes in America are still using gas fireplaces. If you are one of them, this article is for you as I am going to focus on stylish accessories to make your traditional fireplace even more glamorous!

Unlike many people think, finding the right tools to make your fireplace stand out without breaking the bank is not an easy task as fireplace tools are not sold everywhere, but at specialty stores. While I love using the internet for my projects, either for getting overall ideas to show to a client a concept or to actually browse for items to be used in the project, there are certain things that you must see in person, such fabrics, furniture, and fireplace tools.

There is nothing like looking at a fireplace set in person, seeing how each item is manufactured, admiring every design details, feeling the weight of each piece carries. If you are a fireplace lover, you can definitely relate to this. Buying a fireplace set is like going to a wine tasting, where all of your senses are put to a test to help you to select the best product. 

One of my favorite places to shop for fireplaces and accessories in the Chicago area is the Northshore Fireplace store. Located in Evanston, this store has everything fireplace related that you can think of. While brass is still considered the standard for fireplace accessories, from an interior designer standpoint, there is nothing more unique and intriguing than a hand-forged tool set. In the middle of so much technology and mass production items, those sets really stand out as they are individually handmade using wrought iron and many of those sets also carry some feature from the original European blacksmith designs.

Besides being stylish and unique, a hand-forged tool set will definitely become an asset to your room design and will turn into conversational piece among family and friends. 
However, if you are not a huge fan of hand-forged items, and brass is also not your style, think of regular iron sets. They will bring out some of the rustic flair to your fireplace without interfering with the room overall’s design. Even though many of the iron sets resemble some of the blacksmith designs, they are not exclusive or unique like the hand-forged ones, as they can be easily replicated.

In addition to having a fireplace set that is a conversational piece, you can also enhance the area by incorporating some black and white photographs over the mantle. Create a group of 3 or 5 picture frames and place them (leaning) against the wall over the mantle. This design solution will give your traditional fireplace something else to talk about. When designing around fireplaces, use photos with a story behind it. It can be the exotic places you visited, your love story, your pet’s best shots, anything that brings you sweet memories and makes you smile.

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