25 Creative empty fireplace ideas for an added visual appeal

Too warm for a fire? No worries! Fill your empty fireplace with decorative pieces for a stunning feature piece.

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A nonworking fireplace doesn't mean it has to be completely useless. You can still turn it into a focal point of your room with a bit of creativity and some styling. Even if it's no longer functional, an unused fireplace can still be a source of visual appeal and make your room appear cozy.

Whether you want a functional addition or something decorative to match your space, you have tons of empty fireplace ideas to try. From accessorizing with your favorite decor pieces, candles, or books, to painting the mantel and doing a bit of tile work, you'll find endless ideas for an empty fireplace.

So, let's dive into these inspirational unused fireplace ideas below.

Ideas to decorate an empty fireplace

1. Add fairy lights as your fireplace decor

Fairy lights for empty fireplace decor

Fairy lights are one of the easiest ideas for an unused fireplace. They are also the best ways to create warmth and a cozy feeling in a home. A similar glow to a real fire minus the upkeep, it's a win-win if you want to light up your space! You can also add an assortment of white pillar candles inside the fireplace area. This would make you want to put your feet up and relax in this space!

2. Accentuate with fabulous foliage

An empty fireplace is just perfect for displaying beautiful foliage in a large vase. You can also add foliage to the wooden mantel to bring things together nicely.

If you need a mantel hung up (and it can be seriously heavy), you will want to hire a carpenter to install it correctly.

3. Arrange woodblocks in an empty fireplace

Woodblocks in empty fireplace

One of the best ways to fill an empty fireplace is by arranging woodblocks. Adding blocks of chopped wood to an unused fireplace will give it an awesome look without having to worry about a live fire. An empty fireplace is also a great place to store firewood if you have an active fireplace in another area of your home. Genius!

4. Imitate flickering flames

Candles are another way to decorate an empty fireplace. Place candles of different sizes inside a fireplace to provide a magnificent glow. This will give you a magical set-up that can also add a romantic feel to your living area.

5. Add some dried foliage

Dried foliage on empty fireplace mantel

When it comes to empty fireplace decorating ideas, you can never go wrong with dried foliage. This shows simple and elegant styling with so much character. Arrange pine cones and dried foliage inside a nonworking fireplace to create that lovely and simple look. You can even use dried leaves on the mantel to accentuate the area and create a contrasting look.

6. Go all out with thrifted finds

Decorate your empty fireplace with an awesome collection of thrifted finds. It might be ornate candlesticks or picture frames, lamps, or a vintage globe. It may be vintage brass fireplace stokers or a peacock-shaped brass fireplace guard. Go all out and find pieces to complement your interiors.

7. Bring in some plants

Empty fireplaces are perfect for foliage, flowers, or plants. If you have a jungalow-style living room, add some spectacular feature plants into your empty fireplace space. Set your plants off against a white painted background, or opt for gorgeous black and white tiling to highlight patterns!

8. Add a faux neon fire design

Faux neon fireplace design

Who says you need real flames to keep your room cozy? Give the illusion of flames with a faux neon fire design. It's witty, quirky, and very appropriate!

9. Accentuate with ornate details

Give your living room an elegant look by using a gorgeous brass and black fireplace guard. The way the metal extends out to the mantel helps the fireplace stand out even more. The overall effect is very sleek and sophisticated. If you need extra help to install these ornate details, you can look for a handyman with experience in fireplace decor. 

10. Include seasonal decor

Seasonal decor in unused fireplace

Empty fireplaces are perfect for displaying seasonal decor like pumpkins for Halloween. Keep your fireplace neatly painted and clean, and you can use it as a frame to set up all kinds of cute festive displays.

Ideas to style the space

11. Add tile for character

Detailed tiles are a great way of bringing some pattern and character into your space. Consider adding starry tiles to your empty fireplace, so it will look extra magical at night, especially lit up by the glow of flickering candles! Just add some foliage in a vase on the mantelpiece and voila! Get extra fancy with different fireplace tile ideas to find the perfect match for your interiors. 

12. Transform an unused fireplace in your bedroom

Unused fireplace transformed in bedroom

If your fireplace used to be a feature of a bedroom, then it's important to still make the space look equally as special when it's filled in. You can use the former mantel as a shelf to display family photos and art and drape some fairy lights across it. 

13. Make a driftwood candelabra

If you love coastal styling, then consider a candelabra made of driftwood! These almost look like they have been washed up from the shore, just with a handmade touch. White pillar candles are simply perfectly placed across the driftwood.

14. Create a faux fireplace

If you don't have a fireplace to work with, but want to create a faux one, installing black pillars will give the fireplace a look without having to worry about committing to a major installation!

15. Add a fresh coat of matte black

Matte black empty fireplace

For a chic and classy fireplace opening, give it a matte black finish. Add in some awesome trailing plants for a pop of vivid green, or contrast it against lighter colors!

You might also like: Living room paint ideas

16. Decorate with stonework

You're in luck if you have an unused but lovely stonework fireplace. They have so much character with all the different shaped, sized, and colored stone bricks. To decorate, just add your favorite decor items, such as candlesticks, indoor plants, or a throw blanket in a basket at the base.

17. Mix design and functionality

Transform your living room interiors with a stunning molded fireplace that can also function as storage for logs. The beauty of a log stack in a nonworking fireplace is all the gorgeous different and warm tones of timber it brings to your living room.

18. Install herringbone tiles

Herringbone tiles empty fireplace

If your fireplace is filled in, you still want it to be presentable. Installing some additional tiling is a great way to finish off your space. Herringbone fireplace tiles are great choices for empty fireplaces, as they are typically the perfect burst of pattern for the space.

Other ideas for an empty fireplace design

19. Make it your personal bar

Who wants a cocktail? What better way to use a nonworking fireplace than by transforming it into a home bar? You can even create two different levels inside so that the contents can be displayed clearly and in an organized way. A little table next to it also works well as an area to showcase your beverage masterpieces.

20. Use it for festive scenes

If you live in the northern hemisphere, then sitting around the fireplace would usually be a necessity for you for Christmas. But if you are in the southern hemisphere and have a warm Christmas, then fireplaces are more of a novelty. You can use it instead to decorate your space to reflect a more festive scene.

21. Turn it into a book nook

Unused fireplace as book nook

Another great empty fireplace idea is making it into your very own mini library or a creative book nook. Stack up all the colorful books in your collection to fill up the space. If you love reading and have an overflow of books, then this idea is definitely for you!

22. Paint with white and gray

If you love a white-on-white living room color, then consider trying something a little different like white and light gray. You still get a similar effect to all white, however, the light gray and the white is such a lovely and less common combination. The light gray looks lovely around the brick fireplace, while the slim white mantel is the perfect border.

23. Color it navy and white

Navy and white are a beautiful combination if you love a dark living room. Consider painting the main portion of your wall in navy and the top strip of the wall and inside the fireplace in white. Just add a beautiful large round mirror above the fireplace and some prints leaning up against the wall for a trendy look.

24. Give it a shabby chic look

Shabby chic empty fireplace

24. Give it a shabby chic look

Give your fireplace a gorgeous, shabby chic appeal. Weathered bricks against the white wall and green foliage work well to achieve this look. Adding some macrame across your empty fireplace can also give it a lovely Boho touch.

25. Use painted wood

There's plenty of beautiful ways to display wooden slices or logs in empty fireplaces, but what about painting the wood in your fireplace? If you have a certain color scheme in your home, then getting creative and painting your wood is such a great idea! You can DIY it or hire painters to help with achieving this look. 

You might also like: How much does it cost to install a fireplace?

Now that you have ideas on how to decorate an unused fireplace, it’s time to light up your interiors! Whether it's getting assorted trinkets or putting in stacked firewood, you can bring more life to a nonworking fireplace and give your space a more relaxing feel. Plus, you have Taskers willing to lend their expertise for your projects - from fireplace installation to hanging shelves. Start planning your project today!

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FAQs on Empty Fireplaces

An unused fireplace doesn’t have to sit empty! You can turn it into a functional space, such as storage for your book collection, or add decorative lights to give your space more visual appeal. You can even use it as a space for your pets—add a pet bed and a food bowl, so your cat or dog has their very own private area.

From the ideas above, you can decorate the inside of your unused fireplace by using the following items.

  • Stack of books or magazines

  • Raw or painted chopped wood

  • Paintings or other pieces of artwork

If you have extra space around your fireplace, you can decorate it with different items to add more visual appeal. Hang mirrors to add more depth to the walls and give an illusion of space. Decorate the surrounding area with colorful knick-knacks that reflect your personality and complement your interiors.

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