With the fall season right around the corner (although it is still hot here in sunny Myrtle Beach, SC, right now!), it started me thinking about all of the things that go along with cooler weather. One of my favorite relaxing activities (once a chill hits the air!) is to curl up in front of the fireplace with a hot cup of tea and a great design magazine. I can hardly wait!

So, when I decided to blog this week about decorating small spaces, fireplaces immediately came to mind again! There are very few other small spaces that pack as great a punch as fireplaces.We generally find that they are the main (or only!) focal point for the rooms in which they are contained.

These days, we no longer need functioning fireplaces in every room to stay warm (although I definitely would not mind it at all!). However, beautiful fireplaces are still treasured for their aesthetic appeal and the lovely architectural detailing  they add to any room. There are truly a multitude of options to fit absolutely any design preference.

Here are some inspiring fireplaces from living rooms of several different design styles…..


(Photos from Elle Decor, except where noted)

Photo from Domino.

I love how this mantle repeats some of the fabulous bright colors in the room! However, it still grounds the space by adding the neutral color in the mirror and sculptures. It provides the perfect amount of contrast against the white walls.

Here is a perfect example of how a mantle can marry together the colors in a room! Notice the artwork that contains green, turquoise, bright coral, and yellow…. all repeated elsewhere in this 70’s inspired space.

This contemporary room utilizes black as its main neutral with restrained pops of color as added interest. The fireplace artwork mirrors that pattern in that it is mostly black with only a slight accent of color peeking through.

This over-the-top room is truly a work of art! Even in such an “anything is possible” type of space, see how the mantle artwork still holds all of the color selections together as a cohesive unit, even repeating the glamour of the gold piano (which, if I remember correctly, now functions as a bar, rather than an instrument!).

The piece hanging over the mantle of this Parisian apartment is actually a 1937 promotional wood panel for the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne. It seems to balance the rest of the room withthe wood flooring.

Photo from Elle Decor.

Notice the very faint “eyeball” over the mantle! What a subtle, yet dramatic (and unique), effect it creates! This room is somewhere between contemporary and modern style decors.

The vintage sconces over the fireplace look oh-so-chic with the metallic chair, ottoman, and accents throughout the rest of the space. I love how the traditional style painting blends the trendy chartreuse and turquoise colors from the loveseat and window treatments.


Here is an example of a traditional style room with a modern piece of art over the fireplace that still works beautifully! The color from the black frames to the right of the mantle  is enough to tie the artwork to the rest of the space.

Photo from House Beautiful.

The mirror over this mantle, as well as the white accessories, brightens the dramatic black of the wood walls.

Photo from Traditional Home.

Again, this artwork could quite possibly have been the inspiration for this whole space, as it contains all of the rich colors used throughout the room.

Photo from Traditional Home.

This eye-catching mantle dominates the focal point of this cozy living room.

Photo from Traditional Home.

The fireplace in this room blends beautifully with the cool, soothing surroundings of the rest of the space.

Photo from Elle Decor.

The 18th-century French overmantel mirror beautifully reflects the light from the other side of the room and even makes it appear as if the gray striped wallpaper continues within the frame. The mirror and lamps on the mantle are perfectly flanked by the 1940’s neoclassical cabinets on either side.

Photo from Veranda.

This color palette of this peaceful living room is connected to the high ceilings by the the mantle artwork of grand proportions.

Photo from Elle Decor.

This fabulous room finds its roots in traditional form and feel, yet it has the glam of a romantic art deco-esque space. The overscale portraits of Marie Antoinette on either side of the mantle, combined with the shiny, white lacquer walls and silver rug, create the need for a more simplistic mirrored display over the fireplace itself.

Photo from Elle Decor.

This living room boasts a 17th-century marble mantle, on which a Han dynasty horse is displayed. Adding other components to this fireplace display would only have take away from the classic beauty of the current design.


This fantastic all-in-one room designed by Bunny Williams is actually more traditional style, but it is so unique and edgy that I decided to include it in the eclectic section. How fabulous is this entire fireplace wall as the focal point of this space?!  It does not include the  bright yellow and red found in the furniture, but we also cannot see the other side of the room from this angle, so it may tie in over there? Regardless, she brilliantly pulls off this room, even with the broad range of colors and forms.

Photo from Veranda.

The photo above, as well as the next two photos following, all show fireplaces that are from the same home located in Charleston, South Carolina. You will see that the home itself is quite historically traditional with modern and contemporary accents throughout. In the photo above, the Andy Warhol artwork contrasts the traditional fireplace structure and classic furniture lines. In the case of this eclectic design, the colorful accents were added for the specific purpose of creating a dramatic effect.

Photo from Veranda.

Again, it is clear to see the eclectic “edge” of this space in the colorful artwork that seems to oppose the traditional objects located upon the mantle.

Photo from Veranda.

The geometric rug and modern chair make the traditional beauty of the historical mantle stand out.

Design by Miles Redd.

Look at this interesting blend of items on the mantle! The mirror accented with a playful red wreath works in this eclectic design.

Photo from Elle Decor.

This fireplace mantle adds to the warmth and charm of this cozy bedroom. The mirror ties the colors together throughout the rest of the space.


Photo from Elle Decor.

Even though the artwork over the mantle is not symmetrical, it seems to work perfectly in this modern space, perhaps due to the very “boxy” furniture arrangement and the matching door openings to each side of the fireplace.


Photo from Country Living.

This cottage chic style room has a touch of femininity that begins with the lovely painting of a lady over the mantle. The pink-lined bookshelves and sofas continue that presentation.

Photo from Cottage Living.

This unique shell fireplace sets the tone for this cozy living room. The natural containers and live greenery on the mantle tie in with the relaxed, organic feel of the space.

After seeing all of these different styles of mantles, which is YOUR favorite? What do you have hanging over your mantle at home?


NOW, GO HAVE AN “It’s So Fabulous!” DAY!

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Stylish, sophisticated and dramatic, Kimberly Grigg brings her unique talents to client’s homes across the country and to her retail boutique, Knotting Hill Interiors. An award winning retail boutique and an award winning full service design firm, Knotting Hill offers luxury interior design, renovation and remodeling services, custom design, childrens rooms and nurseries and accessorizing. The retail boutique sells fabric, home furnishings, retail design, lamps, accessories, art, upscale furniture consignment, gifts, fashion and jewelry. Voted “Best on the Beach” in both retail and design, our customers say that this place and this process is truly “enchanted”! Knotting Hill Interiors is based in Myrtle Beach South Carolina and is located at 7751 North Kings Hwy.