Whether you want to update your existing fireplace or install a new source of heat. Here are some great ideas that’ll make your fireplace a focal point.


“A fireplace offers the opportunity to make a focal point,” says Claire Clarke of By Dezign Interiors. “To draw attention to the gas fire, I painted the chimney breast and surround with textured suede paint and hung a framed artwork to draw the eye.” A couple of ginger jars link the fireplace with the blue and white scheme.

READ MORE: 5 Ideas for fireplaces

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Open on two sides, the fireplace in Debbie O’Flaherty’s Jo’burg house heats both the dining and living rooms. The face brick surround and timber mantel complement the sophisticated country feel. Decor by David Muirhead & Associates.

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READ MORE: A Small open plan home


If you prefer a clean, simple look, don’t bother with a mantelpiece or surround. In this Jo’burg home, the wood burning fire was set flush with the chimney breast. All it needed was a faceted mirror and a set of horns above to make it a focal feature. Decor by Jenna Penny Interiors.

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As her apartment is rented, Valery Zelenyuk of Agape Wedding & Event Design made the fireplace a feature with styled books, photographs and accessories on a simple wooden shelf. She added symmetry with two identical firewood buckets.

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In Bernadette Sampson’s contemporary home, a washed timber surround offsets the steel framed gas fire, which rests on a floating shelf. Decor by Robin Widdop.

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READ MORE: An eco-friendly seaside home


In modern rooms, keep it simple. Painting the chimney breast grey was all the embellishment this fireplace needed. The stack of wood is cleverly kept in check by steel cables attached to both the ceiling and floor.


In open-plan areas and rooms with angled walls, there’s often no suitable wall for a fireplace. The solution is a freestanding stove or one that’s suspended from the ceiling. In this renovated Tamboerskloof home, Hocus Interior Design Studio chose an ARC Neo 3W wood burning stove that fits neatly against the living room wall and doesn’t take up space.

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If you don’t have, or can’t have a fireplace and chimney but would love a fire to sit by, then a biofuel fireplace, like this one from Beauty Fires, is the answer. They burn bioethanol and are easily and simply installed.

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