Fireplaces are easily one of the most important home decor focal point elements in any home. It is a vital part of interior design, and the fireplace can dictate the mood for an entire room. While some homes already have a fireplace, a remodel to that area might be in order. If you have just purchased a new home, there is a good chance that the house didn’t come with a fireplace at all.
While there are a good number of different fireplace types around, this article is going to focus on one type: an inglenook fireplace. For this guide, we will explain what an inglenook fireplace is, why you may want to build an inglenook fireplace, and further tips to get more out of the space. We’ll also touch on the importance of using a shelf-style mantel for your inglenook fireplace and give many options regarding mantel choices. Lastly, we will talk about the best fuel type to use for an inglenook fireplace and the fireplace model you should be picking to install inside of your fireplace.
This Guide Will Provide Answers To These Important Questions:
- What Is an Inglenook Fireplace and How Can Homeowners Benefit From One In Their Living Room? – To start things off, we explain what inglenook fireplaces are and how you can benefit from building an inglenook fireplace area in your home.
- What Is The Purpose of Installing a Fireplace Shelf With a Charming Inglenook Fireplace? – Mantel choice is everything and this section touches on mantel shelves to use with your inglenook fireplace.
- What Are The Different Fireplace Shelf Types That You Can Use With an Inglenook Fireplace? – While inglenook shelves have their benefits, there are a few separate types of mantel shelves you can choose between.
- How Important Is Material Choice For a Fireplace Mantel Shelf That You Will Use With Your Inglenook Fireplace? – What kind of material your mantel is made out of is vital to the functionality, appearance, and overall feel of the fireplace.
- What Are The Advantages of Choosing a Third-Party Fireplace Mantel Shelf For Your Inglenook Fireplace From Companies Like Pearl Mantels or Mantels Direct? – We cover the benefit of choosing a pre-made mantel for your inglenook fireplace from a major mantel retailer.
- What Are Some Of The Different Fireplace Shelf Options That Pearl Mantels or Other Mantel Retailers Have Available For Your Inglenook Fireplace? – We talk a bit about mantel choices that are available with big-name mantel retailers.
- Instead of Brand Name Mantel Retailers Like Pearl Mantels and Other Companies, Is It Okay To Purchase Generic Brand Mantels? – While generic mantels are available and the price can seem enticing, we cover why purchasing one may be a big mistake.
- Despite The Many Fireplace Mantle Options Available Through Pearl Mantels, Can You Customize Your Inglenook Fireplace By Building a Mantel Yourself? – If you prefer building a mantel, we talk about the viability of doing this yourself.
- Why Should People Choose an Electric Fireplace To Use With Their Inglenook Home Improvement Project? – If you are building an inglenook fireplace area inside of your home, we explain why electric fireplaces are the only smart option to choose.
- What Fireplace Brand Works Best If You Want a Charming Inglenook Fireplace With Realistic Flame Effects? – With the multitude of fireplace brands, we highlight the best to pick if you want to get the most out of your inglenook fireplace area.
An inglenook fireplace is a type of open-hearth fireplace design. It is a fireplace space that is recessed into a wall of a home. Traditionally, these were spaces to help keep warmth in that area and allow for strong heat. These fireplaces were often used as a heat source for cooking a variety of dishes. While people wouldn’t normally use open-hearth fireplaces with an inglenook design as a place to cook, they still hold a lot of charm.
Since inglenook fireplaces are recessed into a somewhat sizable wall cavity, they instantly have an interesting residential architecture element to their design. Having an inglenook fireplace area in your home is not nearly as common as it was in the past. It will be an instant talking point with any guests who visit you at your home. Because of the interesting and somewhat unique look of an inglenook fireplace, an interior designer will have a field day decorating the area.
Because of the rustic and traditional appearance of an inglenook fireplace, homeowners should lean into the design. You can turn this space into an incredibly charming and cozy area. With the right mantel and accessories, you can turn this space into a warm and inviting reading area, or simply a space for anyone to sit and relax when it is cold outside of the house.
Mantel surrounds are the most common type of mantel that you would use for a fireplace. This is a mantel with a leg on either side that helps prop it up against the wall. Of course, this isn’t the only option. With the unique design of an inglenook fireplace and the limited space within the nook, shelving is a fun option.
This will be different than your typical shelves. Instead, this will be a large mantel that is set up like a shelf. A rustic fireplace mantel that is a single wood shelf is a great fit for a rustic inglenook fireplace area. The clean lines of a single wood shelf allow for space for your books to read or to display any collectibles that you want to have displayed.
If you want to lean into the reading area, you can further recess additional shelves into the wall inside of an inglenook fireplace. This will allow you to fit a small library of books to read warmly by the fireplace. To have a comfortable place to read you should place a comfortable chair or other comfortable furniture into the inglenook area. Of course, you must be safe with anything that is placed near a fireplace. You will want to focus on non-combustible items or have sufficient space within the nook.
There are a few different types of mantel shelves that would work with an inglenook fireplace. There are essentially two main types. First, you have a floating shelf. Floating shelves are single boards without any kind of visible brackets securing them to the wall. These can be a single block of wood for the mantel, but often they are planks of wood built into a box shape to appear to be a single block of wood. By building floating mantels into a box shape with planks, you are severely lowering the weight that will need to be supported.
Floating shelves are typically mounted to a wall with a cleat. This is an angled mounting board that is secured to the wall or studs within the wall depending on the type of wall that it is attached to. If drywall is involved, then mounting cleats need to be secured to studs within the wall because the drywall can not hold up the weight of a mantel alone. If the wall is stone, brick, or some other hard material, you’ll need to secure the cleats with mounting bolts plunged deep into the wall. Once the cleat is completely secure, you can then mount your shelf-style mantel onto it.
Similar to floating shelves are mantel shelves that use corbels. Corbels are small supports that go under the mantel. You will typically place a corbel on either side of the mantel so that the weight is evenly distributed. For extra-wide mantels, a third or fourth corbel may be required in the center to add extra support and prevent the wood from bowing. Often, when corbel units are needed with a mantel, it is either for the aesthetic value of the mantel or the need for extra weight support. Often, both of these reasons are valid. Of course, along with the use of corbel supports, cleats are typically also used with them.
Since mantel shelves are so dependent on the weight of the mantel, the choice of the material that you pick is an important decision. The material you choose also plays a part in the visual aesthetics of the mantel and your fireplace as a whole.
While a wood fireplace mantel shelf is the most common, there are many varieties here to consider for a wood mantle. Real wood is the most common choice. It doesn’t matter much whether it is a solid wood block or if you build a box-style shelf from planks. The appearance will be the same.
While wood choices like oak and walnut can look great and have a rustic appearance with a rich wood grain, you need to be careful using them due to their often heavier weight. If you want to go in this direction, try barn wood. Barn wood has a similar appearance for the rustic-style aesthetic, but it tends to be lighter and easier to work with. Of course, there are many others you can choose from. You can go with pine wood with a nice stain, wood with an espresso appearance, and more. You can also try acacia. Acacia often has a red hue similar to redwood. It is strong and durable. For lighter woods, you can try options like alder and poplar. Alder is the lightest of all hardwoods. Because of its strength, many people choose alder over a softwood type like poplar.
Of course, you can get the appearance of wood without actually using solid pieces of wood for your mantel. These are options like MDF and particleboard. MDF is a faux wood that is made from wood fibers. It is often cheaper than natural wood, weighs less, and is easier to work with. However, with these faux woods, you will either need to paint it or attach laminate siding to give the appearance of grain. Unfortunately, synthetic mantels made out of faux materials will not last as long. Additionally, if you purchase low-quality versions, they can look particularly fake and tacky.
Stone mantels are where things can get tricky. Stone mantels can be cast stone, cobblestone, or faux stone siding. While a floating shelf with faux stone will be the lightest and just as easy to install as wood mantels, using real stone can be quite heavy. If you use real stone then good weight support will be vital. Corbels will be a necessity. Of course, if you choose a faux stone option, corbels will not be necessary due to the reduced weight.
Both Pearl Mantels and Mantels Direct offer many types of mantels that will make your inglenook fireplace look beautiful. They have many best sellers that you can choose from. Many of their mantels are in standard sizes. Having mantels in standard sizes makes it easier to work with fireplace models that are also of a standard size. You can follow the installation instructions to install your mantel yourself or have a local professional install your mantel for you.
Essentially, mantels from these companies will be made of a higher quality. They will have several styles and materials to choose from. You can get standard surrounds with mantel legs or you can browse through the selection of mantel shelves and see what style will be perfect to match the decor of your home.
By purchasing third-party mantels, a lot of the guesswork and effort is removed from your project. You don’t need to build anything with your hands. You can rest assured knowing that your mantel is already up to a high standard regarding the design and build quality.
Even if you were thinking about building a mantel yourself, browsing around and looking at mantels from these popular mantel retailers will help inspire your mantel design.
Websites like Pearl Mantels and other similar online stores have a large number of mantel models to choose from. Two of the most popular mantels that they have are their Shenandoah and Crestwood mantel models. Of course, they have others to choose from. They have mantels that are made out of actual wood, but they have artificial wood options as well. Any need you have for your inglenook fireplace area can be met with the help of mantels from these popular online retailers.
Another popular option is mantels from the Dog Berry collection. The Dog Berry collection is a selection of different decor products that are made of actual wood. The dog berry collection has a line of fireplace mantels that are worth a look if you prefer a mantel that is made out of wood compared to other options.
Many other dedicated retailers and manufacturers make mantels for your fireplace. It is a good idea to choose a quality brand name of fireplace that matches the style that you prefer inside of your home. While there is some overlap, many of these brands have a specific style and tend to use certain wood types compared to other brands. With so many choices, it will be easy to find a mantel that will make your inglenook fireplace look amazing.
There are many generic brands of mantels for people that don’t want to purchase a mantel from Pearl Mantels or other popular brands. These can be third-party mantels from local big-box retail stores like Walmart. Even hardware giants like Home Depot and Lowe’s have plenty of third-party mantels from customers to choose from. Unfortunately, many of these generic brands have issues that make them unreliable. If the pricing looks too good to be true, there is a reason for that. They often use cheaper materials and cut corners in mass manufacturing so that the build quality is as cheap as the price tag.
While you don’t necessarily need to choose Pearl Mantels, you should stick to trusted brands of mantels for your fireplace area. You will be happier if you did. By purchasing a generic brand of a mantel, it will usually look bad once you’ve installed it. Even if it looks aesthetically decent, it can have quality problems that will result in you needing to replace it after it is scratched, chipped, or otherwise broken. With brand-name mantels made out of quality materials, these issues will be less likely to happen.
This advice can be applied to most decor items for your home. While cheaper prices easily catch the eye, quality brand names are almost always the best choice. You will end up with products that can last for a lifetime rather than products you’ll need to replace every year or two. When it involves an inglenook fireplace, you want to choose quality brands that will help your fireplace last a lifetime. You don’t want to ruin the charm of an inglenook fireplace with cheap materials and products.
So, you don’t want to get a fireplace surround from one of the many retailers like Pearl Mantels. You’d prefer to build a mantel yourself. Luckily, this is easy with a fireplace insert. Using a fireplace insert, you can build a mantel directly around it, fitting it perfectly. Just be sure to choose your insert first, as this makes it much easier than building a mantel first and finding an insert to fit it.
Electric fireplaces are quickly becoming the regular choice of homeowners that want a fireplace in their home. The days of wood fireplaces are coming to an end. In many parts of the US, you couldn’t even build a wood-burning fireplace in your residence because they are banned. The main reason they are banned is due to fire safety issues and environmental issues.
Of course, along with these problems, you have breathing issues to contend with too. Wood-burning fireplaces have ventilation in the form of a chimney. However, all of the smoke and other emissions don’t make it out of the chimney. A small portion will just fill your home. Even this small portion can cause some serious breathing issues. If the chimney becomes blocked, carbon monoxide poisoning and smoke inhalation can be deadly.
Beyond safety, wood fireplaces are just a lot of work for your average person to use. Every day, when you want your home to get warmed, you have several chores involved with the process. To begin, you need to clean the firebox of your fireplace completely. You’ll be shoveling and sweeping all of that ash out to make way for your next fireplace. Afterward, you’ll have to pick up an ax and split some wood if you haven’t already done so. After you carry the wood back inside, you’ll need to build the fire. Once you light the fireplace, now more work begins. You have to keep your ever-watchful eye on the flames. You need to pay attention to it and check in on it for safety. You’ll also have to stoke the flames and add some additional logs whenever it is needed.
Unfortunately, there is no getting away from the smell of a fireplace. While it is nostalgic for many, the charm of your entire house smelling like smoke fades much quicker than the actual smell does. The smoky smell permeates every fiber of furniture and anything else made out of cloth. Additionally, prepare for many of your walls and light-colored furniture to develop a yellow stain. This unsightly stain can cause your home to look old and dirty in just a single winter of fireplace use.
Although gas fireplaces offer solutions to many of these wood fireplace problems, they have some problems that are unique to them. Despite their clean-burning fuel, carbon monoxide is still a dangerous issue many homeowners aren’t aware of. Fire safety is still a serious problem because flames are still there and exposed to flammable items in your home. Even if you ignore these issues, the flames themselves simply don’t look appealing. They flicker very little and the colors are strange. The flames never seem to look as natural as real fireplaces. Blue flames in some gas fireplaces are unauthentic and tacky.
Electric fireplaces don’t suffer from any of the monumental issues that these other fireplace types have. You get all of the benefits that you get with those other fireplaces, but you don’t have any of the safety concerns or hassles that come with them. In addition, a completely electric-style fireplace is an easy installation.
easy installation. After you’ve set it into place and plugged it in, the heat output is easily controlled with a remote control unit or a smartphone app. Since ventilation isn’t required, they are even easy to install with an inglenook fireplace setup.
There is no better brand of electric fireplaces to use for your inglenook-style fireplace area than MagikFlame. They have so many great models to pick from like the MagikFlame Churchill or an insert. You can find a selection of great mantel packages and find one that fits your style with ease. Regardless of which of the many great models that you pick, these features are always included with them:
● Gorgeous Ultra-Realistic Fire Effects
● Fun Crackling Log Sounds
● Cozy 5,200 BTU Heat
● Useful Smartphone App