Fan the Flames with Creative Fireplace Decor Ideas

You just purchased your home, you’re redecorating seasonally, or you’re finally tackling that giant question mark on your to-do list: what should I do with my unused fireplace? Whether the fireplace in question is broken, sealed off, or simply doesn’t get used, it can be a massive eyesore in your living room or bedroom. But it doesn’t have to be!


After we go over the essential exterior anatomy of your fireplace, we’ll cover different flavors of decor and how to style your fireplace to match them. No matter how your house is decorated, you’ve got options! Let’s explore them.


Fireplace 101


Before we can discuss how to decorate your fireplace, it’s important to know the parts of a fireplace. We’ll cover the external portion – the part that you can see.




Starting at the bottom, the hearth is the portion that extends out onto the floor. You may think of this as the area to store firewood, tools, etc.




The firebox is the chamber where you would put wood and start a fire.




Though not all fireplaces have mantels, this shelf is above the firebox. It’s often used to display family photos or decorations.




The external facade of a fireplace is called a “surround.” This is typically made of the same wood, tile, or brick as the rest of the fireplace.


Don’t forget about fireplace safety!


Safety is a top priority with home appliances, especially those that use heat or fire. If you’ve recently purchased your home, you’re unsure if your fireplace is functional, or have any questions about it, consult a professional fireplace technician or chimney sweep specialist. They can perform an inspection and advise you on any potential safety hazards you might need to address before decorating your fireplace. They can also advise you if your fireplace is drafty in the winter.


Additionally, if you have a gas fireplace, they may be able to help ensure that your fireplace is fully disabled and not at risk of leaking dangerous gas into your home.


Fireplace Decor Ideas


Modern farmhouse fireplace ideas


If your home has a modern farmhouse theme, you can incorporate the style into your fireplace decor.


  • Mantel: If your fireplace is brick, consider limewashing it to help blend into the rest of your home. Decorate with antique knick-knacks, reclaimed wood, or even metal sculptures.


  • Firebox: If you haven’t bricked over or otherwise closed off the fireplace, use the empty firebox as a space for decor. Consider a collection of oversized, same-colored candles of various heights and widths. Or, you could arrange aesthetically pleasing logs (natural or artificial!) in the space. For a modern farmhouse twist, consider a bundle of cleanly cut aspen or birch tied together with rustic twine to totally transform the space.


  • Hearth: Wooden crates of rustic items, like stacks of wood, dried flowers, books, or even blankets, can extend out on the hearth. Find an antique set of fireplace tools to display, or if you have a not-so-antique set, DIY to give it a rustic, heavily-used look.


Boho and eclectic fireplace hearth decor


If your home is decorated with a boho or eclectic style, congratulations: you’ve got yet another blank canvas to spread your unique look!


  • Mantel: If your fireplace is brick, consider painting it a bright color. Choose something that pops to make a statement! If your fireplace is tile, consider replacing the tile with something more true to your style.


  • Firebox: While you could fill the firebox with interesting, quirky objects, another idea is to cover it with decorative fireplace screens or use a room divider to cover the whole fireplace and mantel.


  • Hearth: If you decide not to cover your fireplace, use the hearth to keep floor cushions while not in use. Alternatively, you could use this as a space for a collection of plants in colorful planters.


Cottagecore fireplace mantel decor


A cute fireplace is the perfect complement to a cottagecore-style home. However, if you live somewhere particularly warm or your fireplace doesn’t work, even just the look is plenty to add to your home’s pastoral ambiance.


  • Mantel: One word: plants. Plants of different heights, trailing plants, faux plants – make that mantel pop with plants. If you don’t have a green thumb, that’s okay — stack vintage books, plenty of candles, and jars full of dried flowers. A lace runner across the top makes a great base.


  • Firebox: Of course, plants are a great option here, too. Consider building a stack of firewood (much like the previous farmhouse recommendation!) with LED fairy lights around it for a glowing “fire” without the work. Or, if you’re incredibly crafty, you could even paint a cute woodland scene inside the firebox.


  • Hearth: Now it’s time to embrace the coziness of cottagecore. A woven basket full of throw blankets, knitting materials, or bundles of firewood is right at home on the hearth. A pair of unique chairs could provide the perfect area to snuggle up!


Fireplace decor ideas: modern, Scandi, and Japandi


A minimal, Scandinavian, or Japandi-inspired home may not scream “decorative fireplace,” but that’s okay – you can make it work.


  • Mantel: Scandi designs are intentionally minimal, with most objects serving a specific purpose. Consider hanging a large, frameless mirror above your fireplace to help bring more light to the room. If you choose to have decorative objects, try to limit them and keep them neutral. Minimalist wooden figurines, for example, could provide some visual interest.


  • Firebox: For a Scandi home, keep the minimal approach. One or two large birch branches leaned against each other or in a subdued container, a simple sculpture, or a clean screen can occupy this space.


  • Hearth: If you’ve already decorated the mantel and firebox, adding things to the hearth itself may be too much. If you only choose to decorate the hearth, remember the previous tips: clean artwork, mirrors, and minimal plants are great additions. 


Traditional and timeless styles


Don’t underestimate the power of a beautiful fireplace in a timeless home full of leather and wood!


  • Mantel: A new or antique framed mirror above the fireplace is classic. Consider adding a collection of framed family photos on the mantel to make it feel cozy and lived-in.


  • Firebox: Even if your fireplace isn’t functional, a decorative cast iron grate (the metal piece that sits on the firebox floor and holds wood) can create a beautiful, timeless look. Be sure to include a stack of wood on the grate!


  • Hearth: Likewise, a rack of cast iron fireplace tools can give the appearance of a traditional fireplace, whether you actually use it or not. If you have the space, a pair of luxurious leather armchairs near the fireplace provide a comfortable reading space.


CORT Furniture Outlet Has Your Decor Dreams at a Great Price!


Maybe you live in a hot climate where the thought of a fire makes you sweat. Or perhaps the old hearth in your home has been sealed off for decades, but you want to find a way to integrate it into your home’s decor. No matter the reason, a fireplace offers a world of options for styling your home.

After the paint dries and you’re ready to decorate, turn to CORT Furniture Outlet for your decor needs. From faux plants to stylish room dividers that can hide an unsightly hearth in one fell swoop, CORT Furniture Outlet is your source for used furniture and decor. With discounts of up to 70% retail prices and many items available for pickup the next day, shopping used has never been so easy! Visit your local CORT Furniture Outlet in-store or online today.

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