How To Style An Antique Fireplace

Updated on November 11, 2023

The allure of an antique fireplace extends far beyond its function as a source of warmth; it encapsulates the essence of history, craftsmanship, and timeless charm. Antique fireplaces possess the unique ability to infuse a space with character, lending an air of sophistication and elegance. Their historical significance and aesthetic appeal make them cherished architectural treasures. Westland London‘s expertise in sourcing high-quality historical pieces further enhances their value.

Antique fireplaces offer an opportunity to blend the past with the present, creating a harmonious fusion of styles. In this article, we explore creative ideas to style your antique fireplace, turning it into a captivating centerpiece of your decor. Whether functional or purely decorative, antique fireplaces hold the power to make a room feel warm, inviting, and filled with history.

9 Ideas To Dress Your Antique Fireplace With Style

Styling an antique fireplace offers a delightful canvas for creative expression. These historical gems serve as timeless focal points in any room, and here are ideas to enhance their beauty:

1. Mirrors

Mirrors and antique fireplaces are a match made in design heaven. Placing an exquisite mirror above the mantel not only adds a sense of space and light but also reflects the fireplace’s elegance, creating a harmonious balance. Whether it’s an ornate Baroque mirror or a simple, gilded frame, the mirror’s style can accentuate the fireplace’s charm.

2. Artwork

Hanging artwork above the fireplace can transform it into a captivating gallery. Select pieces that complement the fireplace’s design and room’s theme. A landscape painting can evoke a cozy, rustic feel, while a contemporary piece can juxtapose the antique with modernity.

3. Floral Arrangements

A vase of fresh blooms or a carefully crafted faux floral arrangement on the hearth can introduce color, fragrance, and natural beauty. The contrast of vibrant flowers against the fireplace’s historical backdrop is a stunning sight.

4. Seasonal Decor

Transform your antique fireplace with the seasons. During the holidays, deck the mantel with garlands, wreaths, and festive ornaments. For spring, arrange vases of tulips and daffodils, and during autumn, adorn the mantel with pumpkins and gourds. Let your fireplace celebrate each season in style.

5. Accessories

Antique fireplaces are ideal for displaying a collection of accessories that harmonize with their style. Vintage candleholders, antique clocks, decorative boxes, or a curated selection of antique books can enrich the ambiance. These accessories create a sense of history and culture, enhancing the fireplace’s character.

6. Candles and Candleholders

Utilize the fireplace’s hearth to display an assortment of candles and candleholders. Whether using pillar candles in antique holders or a group of taper candles, the flickering glow adds a touch of romance and warmth.

7. Sculptures and Figurines

An antique fireplace mantel can serve as a stage for showcasing sculptures, figurines, or art objects. Choose pieces that resonate with the room’s theme and create a captivating narrative.

8. Clocks and Timepieces

Antique fireplaces and vintage clocks have an innate connection. Place a charming vintage clock on the mantel to add functionality and a dose of classic appeal.

9. Collectibles and Curiosities

Arrange a collection of unique collectibles and curiosities on and around the fireplace. Vintage globes, retro radios, or a carefully curated selection of antique trinkets can tell a fascinating story.

What About The Mantel? 

The mantel of an antique fireplace presents an ideal opportunity for creative expression, especially during the holiday season. Here are some wonderful ideas to style the mantel and infuse it with a festive atmosphere:

Garland Magic

Garlands are a classic choice for mantel decor. Whether you prefer lush evergreen garlands or garlands adorned with pinecones and berries, they bring a touch of nature’s charm to your mantel. Drape the garland across the mantel, allowing it to gracefully cascade down the sides. You can also intertwine string lights within the garland for a magical effect.

Wreaths of Welcome

Hang a wreath above the mantel to create a welcoming focal point. Traditional evergreen wreaths are timeless, but you can also explore various styles, such as dried flower wreaths or ones adorned with ornaments and ribbons. For a personal touch, craft your own wreath with materials that match your decor theme.

Holiday-Themed Decor

Embrace the holiday spirit by adorning the mantel with festive decor. Miniature Christmas trees, holiday-themed figurines, and stockings can add a cheerful touch. These items transform the mantel into a joyful scene that evokes the magic of the season.

Candlelit Elegance

Incorporating candles on the mantel adds an enchanting glow to your space. Arrange pillar candles of varying heights or group votive candles in glass holders. The soft, warm light creates a cozy and romantic ambiance, making it perfect for gatherings and celebrations.

Personalized Mantel

Use the mantel to showcase personalized items. Family photographs, heirlooms, and cherished mementos can be elegantly arranged. This not only adds a warm and intimate touch but also allows you to share your personal story with guests.

Floral Centerpiece

A floral centerpiece can serve as a striking focal point. Place a large, captivating arrangement in the center of the mantel, surrounded by smaller decorative items. The combination of fresh or faux flowers and seasonal greenery enhances the mantel’s charm.

Themed Display

Create a themed display that reflects your personal style or the season. For example, during the winter holidays, you can arrange a Christmas village or a snowy woodland scene. This adds an element of whimsy and enchantment to your mantel.

Empty Fireplace That You Don’t Use? Here’s What You Can Do 

If your antique fireplace is no longer functional or you prefer not to use it, you can still make it a captivating element in your room. Here are some creative ways to enhance the empty fireplace:

Filled With Branches and Greenery

Fill the empty fireplace with tall branches and lush greenery. This creates a stunning visual focal point and adds a touch of natural beauty to your space. You can change the branches seasonally, using cherry blossoms in spring, branches with autumn leaves in fall, and evergreen boughs in winter.

Candlelit Ambiance

Transform your non-functional fireplace into a magical display by filling it with an array of candles. Place candles of varying heights and sizes to create a captivating tableau. The soft, flickering light emanating from the fireplace adds a cozy and enchanting atmosphere, perfect for relaxing evenings or entertaining guests.

Decorative Fireplace Screens

Consider investing in a decorative fireplace screen. Screens come in various styles, from antique to contemporary, and can be a beautiful addition even when the fireplace is not in use. The screen adds an extra layer of charm and can be easily swapped to match your decor’s theme.

Antique Tools and Accessories

Utilize the hearth to display antique fireplace tools and accessories. Vintage log holders, brass fire screens, andirons, or a charming selection of fireplace utensils can turn the empty space into a curated gallery of historical items.

Reflective Panels

Place mirrored or reflective panels at the back of the fireplace to create the illusion of depth. The reflection adds a touch of glamour and can make the fireplace a captivating focal point, even when it’s not serving its original purpose.

Seasonal Displays

Change the look of your empty fireplace seasonally. In the summer, fill it with a collection of seashells and beach-themed decor. In autumn, create a rustic display with bundles of dried wheat and decorative pumpkins. The possibilities are endless, allowing you to tailor the fireplace’s appearance to the time of year.

Visual Art

Consider leaning a large piece of art or an ornate decorative mirror against the back of the fireplace. This transforms the empty space into a visually appealing feature that complements the room’s decor.

Display Niche

Turn the fireplace into a display niche for your favorite collectibles, whether it’s a collection of vintage books, antique porcelain, or decorative ceramics. This not only enhances the room’s aesthetics but also showcases your personal taste and interests.


Styling an antique fireplace is an art that allows you to harmoniously blend history with modernity. Whether you choose mirrors, artwork, floral arrangements, or seasonal decor, every element should resonate with the fireplace’s character. Even if your fireplace is non-functional, it can still serve as a captivating visual focal point with the right decorative elements. Embrace the past, make your space your own, and celebrate the beauty of history in your home. By personalizing your antique fireplace, you create an inviting and cozy atmosphere that reflects your unique style and showcases the timeless charm of these historical treasures.

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