How to Decorate a Living Room With a Fireplace

Many homes have a fireplace. Modern homes often have a non-functional fireplace, or faux fireplace, while many older homes have traditional fas fireplaces in their living room or dining room.

A common occurrence is for the fireplace to be in the middle of your living room wall, a focal point. As a result, you can incorporate this prominent feature into your decorating plans.

In this guide, we look specifically at how to decorate a living room with a fireplace in the middle. Read on to discover some design tips for your house!

Living Room With Fireplace: Considerations Before Decorating

There are some considerations before buying wallpaper, paint, accessories, and furniture. If you want to make the most of your fireplace and living room, you must think carefully about your design goals, what furniture you already have, and the fireplace itself. We look at these considerations and more below.

What Furniture Do You Have In Your Living Room?

In many cases, you will already have a selection of existing furniture in your living room, like chairs, a sofa, a massage chair and a coffee table. You may simply be re-decorating an existing small living space, for example.

If this is the case, you have two options. Firstly, you can keep the furniture you have and create a cosy living room that matches the style of your furniture. Whilst this is much cheaper, it will also limit your creativity.

Alternatively, you could replace your living room furniture and start from scratch. This gives you far greater creative freedom but is also much more expensive!

Also, you may be moving into a new unfurnished house. If so, you have a blank slate to work with and can let your interior design skills shine! So take this chance to put your creative ideas into reality.

Does Your Living Room Have a Lot of Natural Light?

Another thing you must consider is the lighting in your living room – both natural and manmade. The lighting can play a large role in the decor and style of your living room features. Light can also greatly affect how colours work and contrast with each other.

Before decorating, consider how many windows your living room has. Is it a small living room with only one window? If so, does it lack natural light? In this instance, using dark colours for decorating could be a bad idea and make your small living room feel dark.

Alternatively, perhaps you have a large living room with huge bay windows that give natural light? If this is the case, you could have more freedom to use darker colours or accentuate the natural light by using whites and neutral colours.

Do You Want a TV Above Your Fireplace?

The inclusion and positioning of a TV in relation to your fireplace are the most important aspects.

Not everyone has a TV in their living room, and if this is the case, you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

If you do have a TV, where do you want it? Is there enough space above the fireplace to mount it on the wall? Or would you prefer it to sit in a corner or opposite the fireplace on a TV cabinet?

When making these considerations, you must also think if your fireplace is functional or not. As you will see below, the function of a fireplace (or the lack of it) greatly affects living room furniture placement.

What Space Do You Have Around the Fireplace?

The space on your floor and the space around the fireplace is also something to think about. For example, you may have limited space in your living room, reducing your furniture placement options.

Is the fireplace protruding from the wall on a chimney breast section? Or does it lie flush on the wall? Where are the windows positioned, and could this block furniture placement? Does the fireplace have a hearth?

Think about the fireplace and its space to make the most of the floor and wall space you have available.

Is the Fireplace Functional?

One of the biggest considerations to think about is the type and functionality of your fireplace.

Firstly, you will have either a working or non-working fireplace. Secondly, if you have a working fireplace, it will be either gas or electric.

If you have a non-working fireplace, there is not much to consider. You don’t have to worry about heat damage or placing objects in front of the sofa. Also, you can safely install a TV above a non-working fireplace combination.

Alternatively, if you have a working fireplace and you will be burning wood, you must be careful about placing items in front or above it. For example, mounting a TV above a working fireplace could lead to heat damage.

Also, placing a sofa or other furniture in front of a working fireplace could block the heat and damage the furniture.

What Interior Design Style Do You Want to Achieve?

It would help if you also thought about what style of living room you want. There are many different designs to emulate, or you can do what you feel works!

Examples of styles include a modern living room, a minimalist living room, a cosy living room, or a more traditional design.

Some people, for example, like to create a contemporary space with minimum furniture and neutral colours. Others may prefer a traditional feel that emphasises warmth and warm colours and more furniture to improve the cosy feel.

The style depends on your personal preference. You may not even care about the style. Regardless, it is a great idea to spend some time thinking about a colour scheme and if you want to achieve a certain look for your small living room.

What Is the Style of Your Fireplace?

Living room with a stone fireplace in the center

Lastly, the design, shape, and colour of your fireplace are also important. This will greatly affect how you decorate your living room.

There are many different fireplaces – a stone fireplace, a brick fireplace, a modern fireplace, or a marble fireplace.

It would help to consider whether the fireplace material could be painted or not. For example, you could paint a brick or stone fireplace in different colours to match the walls. In contrast, something like marble or patterned stone may not suit the painting.

Also, look at the size of the hearth and the shelf above the fireplace. How wide is it? Can you easily fit accessories and ornaments on it? What about the surrounding plinth at the base of the fire? How much does this stick out in the room?

Understanding your fireplace design’s shape, style, and size will help you incorporate it better into your modern home design.

Tips and Ideas for Living Rooms With Fireplaces

Once you have made the above considerations, designing your fireplace living room layout should be easier. Still, you need to consider where you put your furniture, how you decorate your walls, and what will you do with the fireplace? Fortunately, we listed below some simple tips for decorating living rooms with a fireplace.

Make the Fireplace Wall Blend in With Your Living Room

A great idea, particularly if you want a minimalistic design, is to make your living room fireplace blend in with the decorating. A living room fireplace doesn’t always have to be the focal point of the design.

Instead, it can be subtle and blend in but still catch your eye and make the room aesthetically pleasing.

Your fireplace should ideally be the same colour as the same wall it is fitted to. For example, you could have a white fireplace combined with white or cream walls and a white ceiling. You could also use similar coloured accessories and decorations to create subtle colour tones.

This type of design may work well for a small living room with a fireplace if you need to use lighter colours to emphasise the natural light.

Create an Accent Wall, So the Fireplace Is the Main Focal Point

Amongst popular lounge with fireplace ideas, there is the option to make the fireplace and supporting wall focal points.

This is done by using contrasting colours for the fireplace wall and the other walls in the seating area. For example, you could have a black accent wall and a black marble fireplace.

You could contrast this with lighter colours and accessories for the other wall spaces in the room.

Extra Tip

If your living room fireplace sticks out on a chimney breast, you could also take this one step further. The breast and fireplace could be painted an accent colour, while you could paint the rest and surrounding walls in lighter colours.

This is a way to put even more emphasis on your fireplace.

Use Accessories and Decorative Pieces to Frame the Fireplace

a wide-spaced area for relaxation

Accessories such as paintings, canvases, and wall hangings are brilliant for framing your fireplace and making it fit symmetrically in your room.

The easiest way to do this is to place a canvas, painting, or wall art on each side of the fireplace wall section.

These simple accessories will provide balance to the fireplace.

It creates a symmetrical effect that improves the aesthetic of your living room. If you do this, also consider the colour of the accessories. You can choose canvases with similar colours to the wall behind them to create a subtle effect that isn’t too jarring or contrasting.

Consider Using Built-in Shelving on Each Side of the Fireplace

To make use of space in your living room and the dead space on each side of the fireplace wall section, why not consider built-in shelving?

Built-in shelves that fit perfectly in the gaps on each side of the fireplace can look fantastic. Firstly, they look impressive and can be used to continue colour schemes.

Secondly, you can use them to create a stylish wall that encloses your fireplace perfectly. Choose the decorations and ornaments carefully for your built-in shelves. Ideally, they should complement the colour of the shelf units, the fireplace, and the walls.

Consider Your Furniture Arrangement

Lastly, it would help to consider the furniture arrangement surrounding the fireplace. Many common arrangements allow the fireplace to be visible but still provide a comfortable living space or a cosy room to entertain guests.

For example, you could place two small sofas or two armchairs on the opposite side of the fireplace on an area rug. A glass top coffee table could then sit comfortably in between these without blocking the view of the fireplace.

Look at your furniture, and arrange it to highlight your fireplace and make the best use of the floor space.

Decorating FAQs

Where Do You Put a TV in a Living Room With a Fireplace?

This depends on the living room design, the type of fireplace, and the size of your TV. If you have a working fireplace, it may not be good to mount a TV above it – the heat could cause damage.

Alternatively, if you have a non-functional fireplace, a TV could safely be mounted above it and create a great focal point.

Can You Put Your Sofa in Front of a Fireplace?

Yes! If you are not bothered about your fireplace, and it is non-functional, you could place a sofa in front of it. The sofa will not block anything important. Also, if you are happy with the room’s design, go for it!

How Far Away Should a Couch Be From a Working Fireplace?

If you have a working fireplace and regularly use it, your sofa should ideally be a minimum of three feet away from it. This will help the heat and air circulate properly. It will also help prevent heat damage to your sofa from the warm fire.

Can Heat From the Fireplace Damage Your TV?

Yes! Excess heat from a wood-burning fireplace can easily damage a TV. This is why it is important to consider the positioning of your TV in relation to your fireplace.

Gas fireplaces will cause more damage than electric fireplaces with more potent heat output. The heat can damage components and cause warping and distortion on the TV screen.

Ready to Decorate Your Living Room Space?

We hope you have found this article on how to decorate a living room with a fireplace in the middle useful! Fireplace design can completely change the decor and feel of living rooms. You can use it as the focal point in the room or something to base your interior design around.

Using a fireplace gives you a chance to be creative and play with many different styles and design choices – see how you can incorporate your fireplace into your living room layout today!

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