Sunday, September 25, 2011

Enjoy The Flames: Decorative Fire Pieces

Fire never goes out of style. Candles have been made in every design possible, and you can literally find them everywhere. No matter what your taste, personal esthetic, design inclinations may be, most people appreciate the warm glow of candles and firelight. In that same vein, and a little more extreme, fire pits, fire pots, tiki torches, and fireplaces are all ceaselessly favored as accents that bring fire to the forefront of a living space, whether inside or out.

 If you are looking for something new to add some fire in your house, and you want something a little out of the ordinary, a vent free fireplace may be for you. Unlike an ordinary fireplace, a ventless model can be used anywhere. They are powered by gas, either propane or natural gas, and can perform just like a traditional fireplace. Where they really differ from their built-in counterparts is in style. With a ventless fireplace, you can use gas logs, which are hand crafted from extremely resistant, durable ceramic, designed to replicate the intricate natural likeness of wood, or you can really veer off the beaten path with some of their more vibrant designs. Fire balls, which stack up and resemble cannon balls for a very modern, sculptural look. Fire balls are also made of ceramic material, and available in a host of different colors for customization and great coordination. Another great look is the colored crushed fire glass. Used in the standard stainless steel burner, it makes for a sparkling, brilliant look when the flames are lit. There are several colors available, like black, white, clear, blue, turquoise, and copper. Glass gems are also popular, and they also add an interesting touch to the d├ęcor. One of the most modern, and streamlined looks it the burner set up entirely bare. Without any accents and decoration, the look is straightforward, clean, and entirely timeless while still remaining current.    

Trends come and go, repeat themselves, get reworked, revitalized, tossed entirely, and reinvented. Fire remains, and no matter how many different incarnations it undergoes, decorative fire pieces, like unvented fireplaces, fire pits, and fire pots make enjoying it a breeze!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

5 HOT Things You Cannot Be Without This Winter!

1. A fire pit. If you live in South Florida, as I do, a fireplace is not exactly the most common household accessory to come by. Sure, you could have one built in to your home's architecture, but seriously, all that work for something you're only going to use a few months out of the year, and is not a necessity what so ever. And, just for kicks, to add insult to the injury, it really does not get cold enough to even need one for the warmth. What to do if your fantasies of enjoying a fire during the cold months has just been put out by that rant? Get yourself a fire pit, stat. Usually of the portable, easy to set up variety, you can find some gorgeous designs, that will go nicely with whatever your patio decor may be. Styles include table-like pits, furnaces, "houses," and chimneys, so you have the upper hand in choosing what works for you. If this isn't enough for you, and your mind schemes something more dramatic, more profound, more like an actual fireplace, you can actually have a fire pit into your backyard. Intricate or basic, huge or small, it can be done; which is the beauty of custom work!

2. Gas logs for the ventless fireplace. The ventless fireplace, you may ask? It does exist, and is a viable option for those who want to savor the glow of a fire in their homes, without having one built in. Yes, it really is that simple. Icing on the cake: no actual wood will get burned! Gas logs made for use in ventless fireplaces are continuously burning, totally safe for indoor air quality and breathing, and do not force you to come up with a way of storing an entire season's worth of wood. Brilliant!

3. Gas logs for the vented fireplace. Backing up #2, gas logs are versatile, and they really rock. It's kind of amazing that not too many people have heard of them, and how awesome they are. They totally replace the need for using actual wood, and heat quicker as well. And, when you're through, all you have to do is turn it off! If you're thinking that you're going to be missing out on the actual beauty of a fire in your hearth, think again. These hot logs are designed to mimic the looks of actual wood, with hand-painted wood designs, accessory pieces that add natural charm, and a fire that burns true. What you will actually be missing out on: residue, soot, ash, smoke, and a fire that needs to burn its way out. Still need convincing?

4. Pretty fireplace accessories. If fire is your thing, no matter how enticing gas logs may be, it's understood, it's part of our primal instincts, and modernity can only take over so far for some folks. So if you are all for wood fires in your fireplace, having nice tools that work, and add some decorative flair is really good too. It just says "winter."

5. A good chimney cap. If you have a fireplace, you'd be utterly foolish to forego this one. Your chimney just isn't a chimney without one. It should be functional, and for esthetic purposes, make sure it coordinates with your house's exterior. Multi flue, or single flue, fit to size or universal, make sure you have one and it fits before you get that fire roaring this year!

Here's to a happy and firery-hot autumn and winter season!