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20 Brick Fireplace Design Ideas & Trends (With Pictures)

View of the living room area with white wooden ceiling and brick wall with fireplace

A fireplace can be functional or purely aesthetic. It tends to take center stage in a room because of its natural placement, and while designs and styles have changed a little over time, the brick fireplace remains an aspirational piece of room design for a lot of people. It brings a feeling of warmth, as well as potentially bringing literal warmth to a room. It can be incorporated into a rustic or modern-looking room and there are a lot of different ways you can design, dress up, or accessorize a brick fireplace.

Below, we look at brick fireplace design ideas you can use to create a stunning-looking centerpiece for your room.

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The 20 Brick Fireplace Design Ideas & Trends

1. Plain Brick

The plain brick fireplace is a basic design but as well as having a classic look and feel to it, it can go well with rustic and farmhouse designs. You can add accents or use design features around the fireplace to add different elements. Alternatively, you can fill the fireplace with plants or other items to achieve a design.

2. White Brick

A white brick fireplace looks clean and has a sophisticated look. The design tends to do well when combined with darker flooring or furniture, or you can add dark elements to the fireplace itself. If you do plan on painting your fireplace, you need to choose paint that is suitable. Standard paint will get very hot and flake or scorch.

3. Whitewashed Brick

Whitewashing is a technique that uses a combination of water and paint, typically latex paint because it is water-based and will be absorbed by the brick. You don’t want an even color, which is unlikely on a textured brick surface anyway, but this means you can paint liberally in some areas and conservatively in others. Whitewashing means you can still enjoy the natural brick look while also adding a touch of color.

4. Gray Brick

Pale gray brickwork, when combined with a white mantle or surround, really brings an added depth to the design of the fireplace. It makes the accents really stand out. And because it isn’t as striking as white or as potentially foreboding as black or dark gray, the fireplace has an almost neutral and relaxing feel to it.

5. Dark Brick Fireplace

Although a dark gray or black fireplace can be foreboding, it can also be highly effective. A darkened room, with heavy leather furniture, can look snug or study-like. Alternatively, if your walls are white and the floor and furniture are light, a dark brick fireplace can be used to add accents to the décor.

6. Block Color

Rather than using different colors or designs for the fireplace and the rest of the chimney breast and surrounding walls, consider taking the brick right the way across and painting it in a single color. This can create a really strong look, acting essentially like a feature wall.

7. Aged Fireplace

New brick fireplaces can look highly effective, but if you want a more traditional appearance from your fireplace, aged brick looks better. You can apply a mortar wash, which is similar to a whitewash except using mortar instead of white paint, but it will make painting very difficult.

8. Reclaimed Brick

Rather than aging new bricks, you can use reclaimed bricks. Reclaimed bricks are fairly easy to get hold of. You may have some left from a previous project or you might have an old wall that you want to take down, and you can use these bricks, but be aware that if your fireplace includes a working fire, you have to use fire bricks. You may be able to pick up reclaimed fire bricks from refurbishment and building projects in your area.

9. Herringbone Pattern

There are no set rules regarding the layout of bricks used in your fireplace. They can be laid horizontally or vertically, or you can even lay them in a herringbone pattern. Alternatively, a chevron layout can also be highly appealing.

10. Brick Arch

Another design feature that can look very effective is the creation of an arch at the top of the fireplace. This gives a smooth finish, rather than the straight lines that are common in fireplaces. It does take more work in the laying of the bricks, though, because if the shape is slightly off, it will look obvious when the arch is finished.

11. Black Accents

Especially effective if you have a white or whitewashed fireplace, black accents can really give a bold pop. Accents include stove doors, handles on doors, and even elements like grates. Have these match the accents like plant pots or other items around the fireplace itself.

12. Brick and Stone

A brick fireplace can be used to create a really rustic feel, and other natural materials can further promote the rustic look. As well as a wood mantel, you can also combine wood and brick with stone.

13. Brick and Wood

Brick and wood complement one another brilliantly and wood can be used as a strong mantle. It can also be used in other areas around the fireplace to carry the design over. There are many different kinds of wood that can be used, each with a different texture and grain. The wood can be left looking natural or painted, according to the design of the room.

14. Traditional Fireplace

Traditionally, a fireplace is made from brick with a fairly narrow wooden mantle. The bricks are laid in a traditional brick bond pattern. The color of brick depends on the brickwork on the rest of the house, which is dependent on when the building was constructed and even the area the property is in. Stick with the traditional look for a rustic feel.

15. Double-Sided Fireplace

The double-sided fireplace is a bold statement and is especially effective at breaking up sections of a through room or combined room. The fire radiates heat outwards into the dining area and the living area, for example. Having a double-sided fireplace does take quite a lot of room so is usually used in large, open-plan spaces.

16. Gas Fire with Brick Fireplace

Brick fireplaces are traditionally associated with real fires, but not everybody wants a wood fire in their home. You can still have a brick fireplace without the stress of a real fire. Have a gas fire installed in your brick fireplace for the looks of the brickwork combined with the convenience and practicality of a gas fireplace.

17. Floor to Ceiling Brick

A fireplace can make a statement focal point in any room of any home, and it can have an even bigger impact if you extend the fireplace bricks over the whole wall. Expose the brick above the fireplace all the way to the ceiling. It not only creates a statement wall, but it also naturally directs the gaze to the fireplace.

18. Firewood Storage

Real, open fires need wood. You can keep large stores of it in an outhouse and bring in smaller amounts. The wood can be stored in a pile next to the fire or you can create a small alcove next to the fire, with the same brickwork. It is a convenient place to store the wood and doesn’t take up floor space.

19. Built-in Cabinets

You can further extend the fireplace by continuing the surround design into the alcoves at the side of the chimney breast. The alcoves are relatively small spaces when left in the room, but they can offer plenty of storage or be used to hold plants and other ornamental pieces.

20. Fill It with Plants

Adding plants to the fireplace itself is a great way to incorporate them into the room design. The greenery looks good against plain or white-painted brick, and if you choose colorful plants, they can look effective against darker colors and designs, too.

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The brick fireplace can be functional and ornamental. It can be left as plain brick or painted. It can even be designed with different patterns of brickwork, and also you can extend the design of the fireplace up to the ceiling or across the alcoves next to the chimney breast. Combine your brick fire with plants, and colored accents, or have a gas fire installed, depending on your preferences.

Featured Image Credit: Artazum, Shutterstock


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