It's officially fall and we've all got that urge to turn our homes into a warm and cozy retreat appropriate for the season. One of my favorite, fall features in a house is the fireplace, but it's fairly common to be stuck in a space with a nonfunctioning one. So, what do you do when you're left with an empty niche and no fire? I'm sharing ideas to fill your fireplace this season!
There's the obvious (but effective) option: fill it with pillar candles. Yes, it's been done hundreds of times, but the key to pulling off this classic look is lots of candles of varying sizes. The more candles- the better; you don't want to skimp on quantity. Choose different shades of white candles to add depth. Another styling tip is to use candle holders or bases; this will help add height and give you a curated look.
I paired the candle vignette with a vintage rug, leather pouf, books, and placed a basket of pillows and throws nearby. It's the perfect spot to spend a cozy afternoon, plus who says you can't have fire with a non-functioning fireplace? The best part about this alternative is lighting the candles to create that same glow and ambiance a fireplace gives. I created a similar look for Christmas last year; the lit candles look beautiful!
The next concept is an easy one- add a mirror! If your interior niche doesn't look presentable, this is the perfect option. It hides any flaws, reflects light back into the space, and feels contemporary.
I offset vases filled with feathers for a new take on the texture. Keeping the palette monochromatic is a great way to incorporate other shapes. I added geometric prisms and a horse bust for variation. The white palette feels clean and crisp, while the feathers bring in a touch of fall.
While I love a traditional inner hearth filled with chopped wood, it seems expected. I wanted to try incorporating wood in a different way- hence the natural tree stump. The large scale better occupies the space and is much easier than styling an entire fireplace filled with logs. I added a couple ottomans that can easily be pulled for additional seating. The natural materials and southwestern rug give this vignette a very desert fall sort of look (can't forget that cute little cacti).
Sometimes the easiest solutions are the most practical. With cooler weather comes cozy accessories. Tuck baskets filled with pillows and throws into the niche for easy access. Nate Berkus does it again... how amazing is this inexpensive basket?
My newest go-to fall floral arrangement really isn't "floral" at all. A little branch of eucalyptus in a vase creates such a fun graphic pattern against the painted brick. Don't forget to cover the hearth with a sheepskin rug, because who wouldn't want to walk on that?
Last but not least, make a bold statement within the niche. I used this fantastic wallpaper from Chasing Paper; the color palette is reminiscent of changing leaves in the fall. I didn't want to cover up the beautiful pattern, so acrylic nesting tables were a great option to fill the void while allowing the gorgeous paper to show through.
A wool Moroccan area rug and vintage mid-century candles add a little warmth and femininity to this chic option.
My fireplace may not be the most beautiful (ahem, dreaming of marble!) and it definitely isn't in working condition, but there are certainly fun ways to make the most of it! Which way would you style your non-functioning fireplace? I'm partial to the classic pillar candles. Each time I trade out my fireplace niche, they seem to make their way back into the space. xo, -Sarah
photography by sarah gibson for coco+kelley