Mirrors Over Mantels

Mirrors have a long and interesting history that stretches across the world and dates back centuries. And despite their transition from a rare object only owned by the very wealthy to a common household possession, the mirror is still a highly popular item of home decor. But why do we hand them over fireplaces? Is there a superstition, a reason, a history?

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE MIRROR.

Techniques for creating mirrors advanced along with society. It was the Venetians that truly popularised mirrors as we know them today. In 1680 came the ability to produce large single sheets of glass and mirrors were made by coating the glass with a mixture of tin and mercury.

As a general rule, mirrors created before this period tend to be slightly smaller, or created from multiple panels of mirrored glass. The success of Venetian mirror makers was the envy of Europe, to the extent it was said that the French court of Louis XIV sent spies to Venice to steal their secrets. The spies must have been successful as France soon became renowned mirror makers in their own right.

The French did not keep as tight-lipped as the Venetians about their mirror-making secrets, and techniques spread to other countries soon after. In the early 19th century, a new, safer method of mirror-making was invented, using silver nitrate to replace the highly toxic mercury. Today we use aluminium in mirrors. It’s lighter, and cheaper, and crucially, not poisonous!

MYSTERY AND MYTH

You may think it a mystery as to why displaying a mirror above a fireplace is often suggested in home decor guides. Given thought, it can appear a dangerous idea to want to see your own reflection above a fire and that a piece or art would be far better suited in this location.

There is a myth that this trend dates back to a time when knights of old were once crowded around the fire on a cold night and were ambushed whilst their backs were turned. From this event onwards the rich installed mirrors above the fireplace so that they would not be compromised or vulnerable to attack again. However, the dates of large mirror manufacture and knights in castles simply don’t align, but it does make for a great fireside tale!

FROM TREND TO TRADITION

Not only do mirrors amplify natural and electrical light, they are masters of illusion; making spaces appear and feel so much bigger than their physical dimensions. From the start of using reflective surfaces in interior design, mirrors have been deliberately positioned to allow additional light to be brought into the room.

As previously mentioned, mirrors were extremely expensive, especially the larger variety. Due to their extreme value everyone wanted to showcase them as a centrepiece. The wonderment created at the royal palace at Versailles was highly influential of the trend for mirrors to adorn the walls in state rooms.

Overmantel mirrors became the must have home accessory during the Regency Period, 1811 to 1820. Architects began to lower fireplace mantels to make room for ever-larger horizontal mirrors. Often these were enhanced by gold frames, elaborate carvings, candelabras and additional smaller mirrors. Vanity was alive and thriving long before celebrity culture, but our noble forebears had to settle for mega mirrors rather than selfies!

The tradition of incorporating a mirror into the space over the mantelpiece soon became established: many of the early versions of these mirrors, usually known as overmantels, were enclosed in glass frames. The mirror was a status of wealth and the frame a reflection of taste.

A MODERN TREND

Now considered a classic look and a neutral solution on what to place over your mantel, there are other reasons why hanging a mirror above your fire is a good idea. The right mirror can make a room seem bigger and brighter, it can also create a bold and dramatic feature.

Choosing the right mirror is key to ensure that it doesn’t lack in personality and hanging something of interest on the opposite wall can give the mirror a practical value too. The idea of hanging a mirror above the fire is to enhance positive room features; it’s also an auspicious Feng Shui practice to place a mirror over a fireplace as the water element of the mirror balances the fire element, thus bringing in good energy into the room.

In conclusion, there is a rich history to hanging a mirror over a mantelpiece and it’s an interior practice that isn’t going anywhere soon. The many unique styles of mirror available on the market make it a great item to create an attention-demanding centrepiece in any room.

Our Top 5 Fires of 2021

2021 was a great year for new fires, with great strides being taken in Ecodeign technology and innovative design. Here we showcase our 5 favourites that stood out from the crowd.

NO. 1 THE LIBERTY 85

A free standing electric fire from Gazco. A bold freestanding design, with the convenience of an electric fire, delivering ambience, warmth and style. This is a contemporary fire that is designed to make a statement.

Featuring advanced Chromalight technologies to create a mesmerising flame picture and ember bed up-lighting that can be enjoyed with or without the heat. An ideal choice for media walls and with two sophisticated finishes, the Liberty provides you the freedom to tailor it’s look to your living space. You can also choose from either black or white finishes, and can co-ordinate this with a matching plinth or bench mount to elevate your electric fire. A selection of fuel effects help you personalise its look even further to fit your interior.

NO.2 THE OYNX LIV 3

A gas stove combining a sophisticated cylindrical design with stunningly realistic flames and log effects. With innovative engineering and design, the Oynx Liv 3 is an unmistakably contemporary centerpiece adding poise and allure to any interior. With a heat output of up to 4.5kW and thermostatic remote control, we love that these quality stoves don’t only look great but are highly efficient too.

Front and side glass panels showcase the Oynx Liv 3’s panoramic flames, providing 180˚ views for maximum visibility. Inside, the flame burner technology creates a tall fire which dances through a highly realistic log effect fuel bed. Conventional flue and balanced flue options mean that this stove can also be installed with or without a chimney.

NO.3 THE AVANTI ELECTRIC

The all new, award-nominated, luxury designer-brand of fires from Stovax and Gazco, is an inset electric fire range.

Designed to offer tailored ambience and representing the very highest level of innovation available in modern electric fires, these premier fires are available in three sizes. Each size has a variety of installation options. The Avanti 110RW, Avanti 150RW and Avanti 190RW are all available in a single, corner or three-sided fire configuration and to give your fire its own bespoke feel, the Avanti range offers you a choice of true-to-life Split Oak or optional Split Silver Birch log fuel-effects.

NO.4 FUTURA 5

A Real Homes Awards 2021 nominee, this wood burning and multi-fuel stove from Stovax ticks all the eco boxes, is incredibly efficient and the fame visuals are outstanding.

The Stovax Futura 5 stove prioritises spectacular flame visuals and high efficiency heat. Designed and engineered in Britain and the result of over four decades of British stove engineering, the Futura 5 represents the cutting-edge of Ecodesign wood burning and multi-fuel stove design. Delivering flair and function with its state of the art engineering and minimalist design.

NO. 5 STUDIO AIR 2

A freestanding, wood burning fire with unsurpassed flame visuals in its category. A contemporary, Ecodesign ready fire with high performance heating and a touch of luxury.

Offering an impressive 8.2kW heat output and featuring a heat shield for reduced distance to combustibles, this fire uses state-of-the-art presions airflow combustion systems to effortly exceed Ecodesign standards.

For enhanced visual grandure the freestanding Studio Air 2 can also be mounted on a Stovax stove bench. Available with black, white or storm grey trims to suit your interior.

What to Look Out For in 2022

It’s that time of year where we talk about trends and look at what’s set to be the next big thing in the world of stoves and fires. Below we look at 4 fireplace design trends that we’re already seeing utilised in new projects and we‘re pretty certain these will continue to surge in popularity in 2022!

SIZE MATTERS…

When it comes to size, it definitely matters in 2022 fire choices! Big and bold statement fires are seeing a rapid rise in popularity with many embracing the freedom to upsize in contemporary layouts. Oversized fireplace designs make a big impact, quite literally, and create a wonderful focal point. Glass panels on stoves are now bigger and wider than ever too, so you can really enjoy the beauty of a log fire compared to more traditional compact designs.


This popularity surge extends into electric fires too. As media walls also continue to trend so do large fireplaces to mirror the size of the screens. The wider the better!

OUT WITH THE OLD

Behold the mesmerising aesthetics of the clean precise lines of a thin, oblong fire. We are seeing more and more clients embrace narrow fires and horizontal deigns.

A natural progression from the popularity of linear fireplace. Long skinny fireplaces really lend themselves to an symmetrical design, and lines can be mirrored with a shelf or bench mount. These fires are ideal to create an impression of a longer room and, as often available in electrical wall mounted options, they’re great for homes short on floor space too.

RETURN TO TRADITIONAL

The polar opposite to above, we’re treasuring that so many people appreciate original fireplaces and are embracing them within their home designs. Whether you’re giving an original a makeover or installing a new fireplace with a timeless and classic design, we’re seeing a big lean in recent months to favouring vintage styles and expect this to continue into the new year.

FIRE THAT DOESN’T HEAT UP THE PLANET.

As we all become more aware of decreasing our carbon footprints in any way possible to us, energy efficiency and eco credibility have become essential features when shopping for a fireplace.

Stovax fires continue to be one of our most popular brands with a wide range of wood-burning and multi-fuel Ecodesign stoves and fires. Lowering emissions to an absolute minimum, their cutting-edge designs make them some of today’s cleanest burning fires. Ecodesign Plus stoves represent the future of wood burning. Supporting the governments Clean Air Strategy, these advanced stoves burn so cleanly they meet, and in many cases even exceed, 2022 air quality and efficiency targets.

Interior Design Trends for 2022

Pantone have already announced the official colour of 2022, Very Peri, and we’re excited to see how it transfers in to the forecast interior trends of the year. We’re looking ahead to see how you can take inspiration from these new ideas to personalise your interiors, design to suit lifestyles, incorporate different tastes and reflect moods.


ECLECTIC


Eclectic style is taking the lead in the interior trends of 2022. A natural progression from maximalism it embraces combining styles, some often thought incompatible, and doing it with creative flair. Like maximalism, this style isn’t about chaotic mess, it’s a busy look that has a connecting link between items through shape, colour and texture.


If you chose to have mismatched furniture and soft furnishings then the key to achieving this trend is to keep your wall, floor and ceiling decoration to a minimal.


ECO-STYLE


Eco-style arrived in our homes almost a decade ago so it’s overdue a new surge in popularity. More relevant than ever, its topping the 2022 list of interior design trends.


This style is ideal for those who favour freedom and light in their living spaces. Organic colours and materials, simple yet functional furniture. Traditional colour schemes are calm and natural utilising natures colour palette with warm earthy shades, beige, white and green.


Natural textiles lend themselves to this style with some new twists being brought in for 2022. Aged and stained wood is making a comeback, unpolished concrete, terracotta and brick are all popular materials to feature too.


LOFT STYLE


Characterised by high ceilings, wooden or metal staircases, wood burning stoves and a combination of modernity and classics (for instance, designer wood furniture and aged mirrors) this is the new industrial chic.


Urban, rustic and an easily achieved look for those on a budget. Stripped back floorboards and old brick walls all look great when paired with modern lighting and furniture.

If you don’t live in an older building with traditional brick walls, there are fantastic brick effect wallpapers on the market which will help you to achieve this style without breaking the bank.


HIGH-TECH STYLE


Minimalistic, modern and futuristic.
It’s time to get serious about storage when it comes to this style, it’s all about the cutter-free, clean and stylish aesthetic.


Get your tech on, this trend is all about the mod-cons. Media walls, electric fireplaces and remote control blinds. App controlled lighting built into furnishings is a great way of taking things a step further and embracing this almost futuristic look.


Accent the main hi-tech colours of grey, white and black with bold accent colours. Pick one as a basis and build your design around it. Glass, mirror and gloss tiles are all materials that will work will within the theme.


COLOUR BLOCKING


Colour blocking is experiencing a third surge of popularity in 2022. This technique came into interior design from fashion catwalks. It involves creating an image of a room by using large colour spots (blocks).


The idea is simple: you need to highlight a few large items and supplement them with details. For example, a cabinet or sofa can appear as a large colour spot. And they will be supplemented by armchairs and décor. The aim is to select items and colours that contrast so that they do not merge with the general background.


Prints are rarely used and if you do chose to incorporate these within the style, simple abstract or geometric designs work best.
It must be emphasized that colour blocking does not involve working exclusively with bright colours. Pastel shades also look very impressive.

Let It Snow, Let it Snow, Let It Snow – Glamping in The Winter

Unlike camping, which for the recreational seasonal campers among us is maybe hard going in winter, glamping in the cold is a much more luxurious experience. Glamping is an activity that isn’t dependent on the seasons especially since the introduction of glamping stoves. The addition of wood burning stoves into yurts, barges and huts has certainly taken glamping up a notch or two on the comfort scale! Summer camping can be too warm for a fire, but in winter its perfect!

Here’s some of the many reasons we love glamping in the winter.

1. THE SCENERY

Scottish scenery is stunning all year round but add in an autumnal palette to a native forest or a thick frost over the mountains and it is undeniably breath-taking. Star gazing under the clear winter skies is an unforgettable experience with a much higher chance of seeing the Mirrie Dancers (Northen Lights) too! Crisp mornings, still lochs and an incredible stillness create a truly magical winter wonderland.

2. COSY PUBS

We can’t write about winter glamping without talking about the joy of sitting by the roaring fire in a rural pub after a long walk. While it’s great to be warm and snug in a glamping pod in the winter, it’s even better to head out on a long bracing hike to a cosy, welcoming pub. Then enjoy some home cooked, classic pub grub and a craft ale, or whatever takes your fancy, before walking back home knowing your own stove awaits you there!

3. THE DARK MORNINGS

Amongst the hectic hustle and bustle of the season we often forget to stop, unwind and relax. Dark mornings can be a grind during the working week, oppressive and un-motivating. But the dark mornings on holiday? Hello relaxing, long lie-in! Winter glamping means no waking up with the dawn chorus at a 5am sunrise and with a bit of luck it keeps any accompanying pets and kids sleeping in a little longer too.

4. THE WINTER WALKS

We know we’re mentioning it a lot but winter sun makes walking at this time of year magical. The trees glisten, the hills glow and the skies are refreshing, there’s something about frosty country air that fills your lungs and makes you feel alive. Winter walks out in nature, whatever the weather, makes the return home to your cosy space even more enjoyable. Especially so if you have a beautiful wood burning stove to welcome you. The other great thing about glamping in the winter is it’s usually cheaper, and you have a wider choice of accommodation. If you love the great outdoors, and being out in nature, but want to enjoy the warmth and comfort of being in-doors, then try glamping!

Learn more about the Eco Glamping Stove here

Christmas Fire Safety Tips

The weather outside is frightful but the fire is so delightful…but only when you know it’s safe.

As the nights draw in and we fill our homes with warmth, lighting candles and fires, it’s wise to remember the dangers of a live flame. Christmas is one of the most dangerous times of year for house fires and UK Home Office fire statistics show that fires are most common in December with candles being the fourth highest cause of accidental house fires.

A little preparation and planning can help you avoid having your holidays and home ruined during the festive season. Below we take a look at some of the most common fireplace risks found in the festive period and list some top tips for keeping you, your loved ones and your home safe this Christmas.

CHRISTMAS TREES

Be careful not to place your tree too close to the fireside, whether real or fake they can pose a serious fire risk. Keep your tree in an open area at least 3 feet away from any heat sources, make sure it isn’t blocking any exits and be careful if lighting any candles nearby.

If you’re choosing a fresh tree, choose one with a healthy green appearance and avoid any that have dry or brown needles that fall off when touched. Keep your tree in a pot or tree stand and water it daily.

If selecting or re-using an artificial tree, make sure it is labeled, certified or identified by the manufacturer as fire retardant.

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

It goes without saying that electrics and live flames don’t mix. Mantel garlands with fairy lights may look magical but they pose another serious fire risk. If you do chose to use one, just as with candles, do not leave it unattended. Another alternative is to only use these when the fire isn’t lit.

Never leave Christmas lights on when you’re sleeping or out of the house. We’re all seem the Mog Christmas Calamity advert…

CANDLES

If you’re using candles at Christmas, make sure you take extra care to use them safely. Blow out candles before leaving the house or going to bed and make sure you only light them in open, visible spaces. If you have children around, it might be best to leave the candles up high so small hands can’t grab them.

If in doubt, avoid using candles altogether. LED, flameless candles offer a much safer alternative to real candles and will keep flickering for much longer than the real version too!

CHRISTMAS CARDS

Whether you hang your Christmas cards on the wall or display them on a shelf, make sure they’re kept well away from candles, fireplaces and other objects that could start a fire. It only takes one card falling down in a breeze to set a whole house alight.

TEST YOUR SMOKE ALARMS

Before the Christmas season begins, make sure your smoke alarms are working properly. Doing so could save lives should anything happen during the holidays. Never take your smoke alarms down or remove the batteries to use in toys, decorations or other gadgets around the home – your life is much more important.

The Fire is so Delightful

Maximise The Potential of Your Stove This Winter

If you’ve been following our blog and social media for a while, you’ll have heard us talk about Ecodesign Ready stoves. They have been designed to make sure they are incredibly efficient. An open fire has an efficiency level of around 20%. In comparison, an Ecodesign Ready stove has an efficiency level of around 80%. We need to be doing everything we can to lower our carbon footprint and increasing appliance efficiency is a great way to help.

The diagram below explains the efficiency of an Ecodesign Ready stove vs an open fire.

While an Ecodesign Ready stove is designed for maximum efficiency, there are things you need to be aware of, to make sure you are maximising the potential of your stove. Here are a few pointers to help you:

REFUELING YOUR FIRE

Place the logs into the centre of the fire, away from the rear, sides and glass. By doing this you are helping keep the glass and the liners clean. Make sure you use stove gloves or an oven mitt when opening the door, adding wood or adjusting the controls.

BURN THE RIGHT STUFF

Hardwood logs are undoubtedly the most healthy choice for your fire. Moisture content is critical too; the moisture levels in any burning wood should be no more than 20%. Too higher moisture (know as wet wood) will create an inefficient burn and increase the levels of tar in a flue, which in turn can increase the risks of a chimney fire and carbon monoxide poisoning. Look for Woodsure “Ready to Burn” quality assured wood. This assurance scheme brought in from May this year (2021) is to help unsuspecting buyers avoid purchasing “wet” wood.

You can read more about what woods to burn here

WHAT NOT TO BURN:

HOUSE COAL

The sale of traditional house coal (also known as bituminous coal) is being phased out in Scotland and is no longer easily obtained.

SMOKELESS COAL/BRIQUETTES

Over time the chemicals in the smokeless coal and briquettes can discolour the fire and can cause a range of other problems, as a result, it is recommended that you avoid these fuel sources. Want to know more click here.

PAINTED OR PRESERVED WOODS

Burning such wood can release very toxic chemicals into the atmosphere, which are a direct threat to air quality. Also, the chemicals can also damage and discolour the inside of your fireplace. Avoid at all costs.

NEWSPAPER AND CARD

A traditional fire starter but a major fire risk. Paper and card burn very quickly and can easily float up the chimney (when lit) and ignite creosote/tar currently residing in a flue, possibly causing a fire. Burning both should be avoided.

STORING FIREWOOD:

You should store firewood in well vented dry areas, that is well away from the rain. Stacking firewood is good because it helps promote air circulation. The last thing you want is to buy correctly seasoned wood only to trap in dampness!

Discover our great range of wood burning stoves.

Pizza Oven Christmas Treats

Christmas is just around the corner, which means it’s the perfect time of year to get those pizza ovens fired up and get creative. No, we’re not talking about cooking your entire Christmas roast (though that is possible!), we want to spread the festive cheer by giving you a few ideas for some easy peasy, tasty festive treats! These recipes are great for parties, nibbles and movie nights.

SHORTBREAD

Shortbread is a great snack to have at hand over the festive period. It pairs well with mulled wine, hot chocolates and a whole host of other ripples too! These shortbread stars are perfect for leaving out for Santa, a quick and easy homemade gift or perhaps you just want something yummy to nibble on Christmas Eve.

Ingredients(Makes 12 stars):

• 150g plain flour

• 100g butter

• 50g caster sugar

• 1tsp vanilla extract

Method:

  1. First you will need to fire up your oven to its optimum temperature, then allow it cool until it reaches around 130°c.
  2. Next you will need to mix the flour and butter into a bowl, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  3. Then pop in the sugar and vanilla extract and mix together until you have a ball of dough.
  4. Once the dough is smooth, wrap it in some clingfilm and chill in the fridge for about an hour.
  5. Whilst you are waiting for your dough to cool, line a high heat-baking tray with baking parchment.
  6. Next take your dough out of the fridge and roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is around 1cm thick.
  7. Using a star cutter of your choice, cut out the biscuits and pop them onto your pre-lined baking tray.
  8. Next, place the biscuits into your wood fired oven for around 30 minutes, or until they are a pale gold colour.
  9. Whilst your biscuits are cooling, dust over some caster sugar for a festive finishing touch.

PIGS IN BLANKETS

Christmas isn’t complete without some scrummy pigs in blankets. Impress your party guests with this Christmassy nibble, honey-glazed pigs in blankets with cranberry dipping sauce. They are so delicious you may just want a plate full of these for Christmas dinner!

Ingredients:

• 60ml (4 tbsp) runny honey

• A pack of smoked bacon

• 900g (2 lb) good-quality chipolatas

• Cranberry Sauce (shop bought or homemade)

Start by firing up your wood fired oven to its optimum temperature and allow the oven to cool down to a roasting environment. Maintain the temperature at 200 degrees C.

Method:

1. Unless you have bought cocktail sausages, you’ll need to divide up your chipolatas.

2. Twist each one in the middle and cut in half.

3. Add them to the sticky honey in a large bowl.

4. When you are happy that all the sausages have a good coverage, tip the sausages and the sauce into a roasting tin lined with foil and cook in your wood fired oven for 30-40 minutes, turning occasionally.

Serve on a wooden board; you can add some Christmas decoration like a sprig of holly to be a bit fancy and place the cranberry sauce on the side in its glass jar for dipping!

CHRISTMAS CRANBERRY & BRIE PARCELS

A scrummy addition to any festive Christmas party spread!

Ingredients:

• Shop bought (17 1/4 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed

• 1 lb Brie cheese

• Cranberry sauce (purchased or homemade)

Fire up your pizza oven as per usual. Bring the oven up to maximum temperature. This recipe is perfect after roasting or pizza cooking as the oven is already hot and saturated with heat. Let the oven temperature gradually cool to baking temperature, for this recipe around 250° C. Sweep all the embers out and place the door in the doorway.

Method:

1. With a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut the sheets into approximately 3 inch x 3 inch squares.

2. Press each square into a muffin cavity.

3. Cube the cheese – about a 3/4 inch cube for each (you may have a little cheese left over).

4. Place a cube of brie in the center of each puff pastry square. Top the brie with a small dollop (about 2 tsp) of cranberry sauce.

5. Bake for about 10 minutes or until puff pastry corners are toasted golden brown & the sauce and cheese is lightly bubbling for that authentic wood fired look!

Snowman Pizzas

Follow the pizza recipe on the blog below for a perfect pizza-oven pizza.

To make a snowman pizza simply create three different sizes and align them to make a snowman shape prior to baking.
https://livingfires.co.uk/2020/08/20/our-top-5-morso-pizza-oven-recipes/

2021 Christmas Décor Trends

We say it every year, but we can’t quite believe that we’re starting to think about Christmas already! However, after the disappointment of 2020’s festive season, we’re only too happy to look ahead, towards what will hopefully be a more ‘normal’ December, with more family members gathered around the tree and fewer seasonal Zoom parties.

We’ve scolled through pinterest, clicked through the hashtags and read the interior design forecasts searching for what are predicted to be the big design trends for Christmas 2021. We’ve discovered asymmetrical trees, the colours of the seasons and the textures everyone’s talking about, plus an unexpected rise in popularity of an item from yesteryear.

So, if you’re feeling quietly festive, or just want to make sure you’re ahead of the game, scroll down and take a peek into what Christmas will look like this year.

  1. OH CHRISTMAS TREE, OH CHRISTMAS TREE

If you love the smell of a real tree or are looking for a more traditional feel this year Christmas, the Nordmann Fir remains a firm favourite across the UK. Well known for its even shape and somewhat sparse branches, these trees have graced British homes for decades and will bring an authentic, nostalgic feel to your home.

If you prefer more contemporary interior decor at Christmas then the Fraser Fir is the tree for you. Extremely popular in the US, the Fraser Fir is a more full-bodied tree in comparison to the traditional Nordmann Fir, with its volume providing a larger canvas for more elaborate lighting and decorations.

But remember: the most eco-friendly way to approach your Christmas tree is to go for a real tree that has been grown locally. Or, even better, rent a real tree from a local supplier so it can continue to grow in-between seasons.

2. WINTER WONDERLAND

When wonky vegetables hit the shelves we rejoiced, finally the imperfect was being seen and its grown in popularity. This new perspective has now reached the artificial tree market, we can expect to see asymmetrical and sparse trees growing in popularity this year.

As with many things in nature, nothing is ever perfectly symmetrical, and the humble Christmas tree, whether real or synthetic, is no different. LED twig trees are continuing to trend this year complementing the interior trends of the year. The bare branches and warm lighting of these trees add a festive feel without overwhelming the space.

The wonderful thing about sparse trees is that they allow for you to show off the unique decorations and lights you’ve collected over the years – from the more modern to your precious family heirloom baubles. Perfect for embracing the maximalism trend.

Tip: If you go for a fake tree, make sure you care for it well so it can be used for years to come. Package it away thoughtfully in between Christmases so it lasts.

3. ROCKING AROUND THE CHRISTMAS TREE

It doesn’t get more British than a Christmas tree skirt. An item from yesteryear that is seeing a huge rise in popularity. The addition of a tree skirt, or collar, allows you to cover up the base of the tree, while also giving you the option to level up your decoration game and continue your theme from the star at the top of three right down to the base. They’ll cover up unsightly stands, protect your floor from fallen needles and make a great base for presents!

4. SILVER BELLS, SILVER BELLS

As the modern, paired-back interiors continue to grace British homes, silver is taking centre stage this festive season. Its muted and cooler tone helps bring the snowy outside in – without the freezing cold temperatures.

Gold is also popular this year as a nod to the pantone colour of 2021 (Illuminating 13-0647) feeding through into many festive designs this year. Gold helps to add a warmth and depth as it contrasts against the leading silver tones. Paired with rich navy and burnished berry tones, gold adds an opulent, sophisticated touch and looks wonderful against dark feature walls.

5. LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW

Continuing the theme of bringing the snowy days of Christmas indoors, white decorations paired against other whites will be a huge trend this year. Textured layers of white to imitate snow such as a variety of cushion textures in fabrics like velvet and corduroy teamed with chunky knitted throws.

6. DECK THE HALLS

The biggest emerging trend of winter 2021 is rustic, homemade looks. DIY décor is on the rise, the pandemic lockdowns have made us a nation of crafters and Christmas is a wonderful time to proudly hand our homemade decorations around the house. If you’re not the crafty type, fear not, the next big trend of the year is a switch to more subtle, stripped back country style. Traditional decorations of pine cones and dried fruit, foliage and berries will be back in abundance.

Following COP26, sustainability is also a huge influence in Christmas décor this year. Re-useable crackers, recycled glassware, re-purposed items and borrowing what you don’t have. Conscious shopping, sustainable materials and natural colours.

5 Creative Locations for Electric Fires and Stoves

We all know that electric fires and stoves are one of the most versatile fire options available and that they can be safely installed almost anywhere you require localised heat. Our range of electric fires and stoves don’t need to be installed in lounges or sitting rooms, they can be placed in many areas of your home and look great! 

From cosy bedrooms for bedtime warmth and bedtime stories by the fire, to stylish kitchens that invite you in. Inglenooks and tiny spaces, or cloakrooms to help the boots dry, not forgetting they are the must have accessory for home offices keeping your comfortable while you work. Electric fires are ideal for creating ambiance almost any where.

Scroll down from some more ideas to inspire you.

  • IN THE BEDROOM

An electric fire in the bedroom can create a stunning focal point, apart from the impressive heat they give out, they can also help create the perfect ambience if all you want to do is get comfy in bed and have the optional mood lighting and flame effect on. It’s up to you if you also want the fire to warm your room.

  • IN THE KITCHEN

They say the heart of the home is in the kitchen, so why not warm the heart of your home with a visual masterpiece, such as the Onyx Avanti 190RW, which is part of the of Onyx Avanti inset fire range. This fire sits perfectly in a kitchen, allowing a great view of the fire itself, without the view being distracted by the functionality of a kitchen. The Avanti 190RW has a range of benefits including:

  • Can be installed as a one, two or three-sided fire
    • Chromalight® Plus Designer LED System
    • Multiple flame options with adjustable flame speed
    • Range of lighting systems and effects
    • True-to-life Split Oak or optional Split Silver Birch glowing fuel-effects
    • Up to 2kW thermostatic heating
    • Flames can be enjoyed with or without the heat
    • Remote control via app or handset
    • Optional Mood Lighting System
    • Ecodesign Energy Saving Features
  • IN A DIVIDING WALL

A dividing wall can be added to any room in the house. A built in electric fire is a perfect way to create a dividing wall with a difference! Not only does it draws attention to the wall, it also draws attention to the fire creating a new focal point in a room. Being located on the dividing wall the fire can also be used to heat both separated areas when using a double sided model.

  • IN A HOME OFFICE

Creating a productive home office is all about finding that perfect balance between form and function. An electric fire or stove can make the perfect addition creating an inspirational and cosy working environment. A fireplace can become the focal point of any room that it sits in, and in small home offices it becomes an even more effective addition.

Being comfortable in your home office space is essential for keeping focused and productive – plus, you want your workspace to be somewhere that you feel settled spending time in.

You can find our more about having an electric fire or stove in your home office here:

Blog: The Home Office Up Grade Everyone Needs

  • IN A HALLWAY.

One of the best and safest ways to dry out wet boots and jackets is to place them in warm room without putting them in direct heat which can damage items. A low, constant heat is what’s required which is where an electric stove or fire can come into its own. Fully adjustable to the temperature you require when you need it, without having to heat the rest of the home. With many models being controlled by an app, you can set your fire to come on before your home from a rainy walk, a very welcoming sight!

Be inspired by the possibilities, where will you put your electric fire?

For more information and brochures arrange to visit one of our showrooms today.