Fireplace Mantels Will Bring Out The Beauty In Any Room


Fireplace mantels are more than just a shelf above your fireplace. Your mantel will be considered as part of your fireplace while also being used as a very important shelf in your home. Fireplaces are generally in the main living area of your home where you bond with your family and visit with friends. Mantels are used as an open "display case" for trophies, pictures of loved ones and, of course, for hanging the kids' Christmas stockings. Therefore, choosing a mantel is going to entail more than just grabbing the first one you see. You'll want one that is large enough to hold the many precious items you wish to display and one that coordinates with your fireplace while enhancing the beauty of the room.

Although the most common mantels are made of marble, wood and stone, you'll find there are also many different styles, shapes and sizes to choose from when shopping for this perfect addition to your home. Choosing the best mantel may seem somewhat overwhelming but it can be a lot easier by keeping these two things in mind:

    • The décor of your room will play a huge part in your final selection. You'll want a mantel that enhances your room and goes with the style of your furnishings.
    • The size of the fireplace is the most important part in choosing your mantel. While you may want your mantel to extend beyond the fireplace, you have to have perfect measurements when shopping so you don't wind up with one that is too short or too long for the available space. It's better to get it right the first time.

Selecting the Mantel for your Home

One of the most important details when choosing your mantel will be the material. You'll want something that's attractive, goes with the décor of your home but is durable and affordable. Some of the most popular materials are wood, stone and fiberboard. With the many styles available, installing your own mantel is easy and quick. You can also get your mantel finished or unfinished to match with your room décor.

    • Wood mantels are affordable, offer a classic yet elegant look and can be easily installed without having to hire a professional. You also have your choice of wood designs, depending on how much you want to spend.
    • Stone mantels are slightly more expensive but offer many advantages you don't get with the other materials such as low maintenance, more durability, a more dramatic appearance as well as being non-combustible, making them your safest option.
    • Fiberboard mantels are often used for building mantels because they have the look of wood, are strong and durable yet are a more affordable option.

The History of Fireplace Mantels

Mantels for fireplaces, also called chimneypieces, have been around since medieval times and were used as hoods set up over the grate with the purpose of catching smoke. Prior to the twelfth century, mantels were not used or even needed because fires were built in the middle of the home with the smoke going out through a lantern in the roof. It wasn't until much later when the design of fireplaces changed and they were built against walls that mantels came into play as an architectural design or something to add to the room's décor.