30% Of Homeowners Say This Is Their Favorite Way To Decorate A Fireplace - Exclusive Survey

There's nothing quite like a gentle burning fire to bring a sense of warm comfort to a home. Cozying up around the hearth by snuggling with a loved one, socializing with friends, or just enjoying the crackling logs on your own makes a fireplace the perfect focal point of any home. Although this type of home heating dates back to the 16th century, according to Old House, it wasn't until the end of the 18th century that accented mantels started to adjoin the hearth to create a more cosmetic aspect. Since then, elaborate fireplaces have been designed to be more efficient in keeping a room toasty and to serve as an ornamental centerpiece to help bring together friends and family.

With large thick mantels surrounding the fireplace, it gave the ideal surface to showcase a wide variety of decorations. However homeowner's chose to adorn them could serve as fuel for inviting welcoming conversation at parties. Even now, with modern technology moving from large wood-burning fireplaces to sleek and stylish gas-burning units, the idea of adding embellishments around the mantel has not gone by the wayside. With almost half of all new builds being made with at least one fireplace, per Eye On Housing, we at House Digest asked 629 people in an exclusive survey, "What's your favorite way to decorate a fireplace?" Here are the results.

The most popular way people decorate a fireplace

Because a fireplace holds such a prominent spot in living rooms, it can create the ideal location for social gatherings or family time, especially around the holidays. That's why it's no wonder that the most popular way people like to decorate their fireplace is with seasonal décor, which received 193 votes, or about 30% of the people who participated in our survey. No matter which holidays you celebrate, it can be fun to drape your fireplace with festive cheer. For those who celebrate Christmas, the lore of Santa Claus coming down the chimney sparks some classic hearth décor including stockings and other seasonal ornaments.

Displaying personal photos around the fireplace was popular among 112 people, or almost 18% of those who voted. Freezing memories in time with family portraits and snapshots is a timeless tradition. With this in mind, the third favorite way to decorate a hearth was with art, which is what 101 folks, or 16% of the total survey, said. When showcasing artwork above a fireplace you want to leave about a 6-inch gap between the bottom of the frame and the top of the mantel, and fill at least two-thirds of the width of the fireplace, according to Under the Roof Decorating. This way the art and fireplace remain connected in a balanced way.

Other popular ways to decorate a fireplace

To really bring a warm, charming vibe to your living room fireplace, add more flaming elements to the mix. About 17% of the total votes were claimed by 105 participants who said they love decorating their fireside with candles. No matter what the color, big or small, short or tall, adding candles to the hearth spreads out that soft flaming glow among the rest of the room. Just be sure to place the candles far enough away so that the residual heat from the main source doesn't melt them before their time.

Seventy people, or 11% of those who were surveyed, chose plants as their go-to décor for the fireside. A lovely drooping plant can look stunning cascading down the side of a large mantel, suggests The DIY Playbook, and it will add dimension to the aesthetic. As with candles, don't keep them too close to the heat. A few vases filled with dried flowers can also give a nice effect to the overall look, or try aloe vera plants which can survive in drier soil. Finally, having a mirror above the fireplace was chosen by 48 people, or almost 8% of the total survey. A large mirror can help make the room seem bigger. For followers of feng shui, the water elements that are associated with mirrors help to balance the fire elements of your hearth, notes Feng Shui Beginner.