Determining the best position for a fireplace

With a large variety of fireplace options, they can be installed in virtually any interior or exterior space. But how effective your fireplace will be will depend largely on its placement.

If you’re looking to install the amenity in your home determining the best position for a fireplace should be your first consideration. Here are a few ideas to consider:

Centrally located

The obvious choice is to place the fireplace on a wall central in the living room where you’ll find it in most traditional homes. This can create a dramatic feature rather than simply looking at a large television screen as seen in the interior above by Outset Design.

Positioning the fireplace centred on the wall also offers you the flexibility to continue the same finish across the entire wall or highlight the feature with a cladding such as natural stone or brick.

Click here to view Crackenback® Free Form natural stone walling.

As a divider

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

A contemporary approach to positioning a fireplace is to use it as a divider. This can be effectively achieved by installing a double-sided fireplace where the flames can be seen from both rooms. Here, Minett Studio has installed a robust double-sided fireplace clad in Baw Baw Dry Stone separating the living and dining areas of a large barn pavilion.

In the bedroom, the best position for a fireplace of this style may be separating the bedroom and the bathroom. Another popular place for a dual fireplace is dividing an entrance and living space.


Charles House Austin Maynard Architects
Interior shot of Charles House by Austin Maynard Architects

For a modern look, consider installing a suspended fireplace as Austin Maynard Architects have done here in the Charles House project. This can be effective when placed central in a room or offset to the side. Depending on your needs, some models are also able to rotate giving you the flexibility to direct the heat to particular areas of the interior.

On a corner

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Corner fireplace installed by BTM Trades

Is there an unloved corner in your home? Perhaps this space is the best position for a fireplace just like the one above framed by walls finished in Alpine Dry Stone. A corner can be effective in various rooms including an entrance foyer, living room or kitchen.

Read tips about installing a fireplace here

In view

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Kensington Gardens home by Proske Architects

For those looking to emphasise a view, placing a fireplace in its direction can help draw the eye. This has been achieved in this interior by Proske Architects where the fireplace helps frame the view of the garden and pool beyond. When positioning a fireplace in view, it’s important to consider the scale of your fireplace so that it doesn’t detract from your outlook.

In an outdoor room

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Howqua fireplace in an outdoor room by Michelle Walker Architects

Installing a fireplace in an outdoor room is a great way to create ambience and maximise the usage of the space. A well-designed outdoor fireplace can radiate a great deal of heat and make it an all-year-round living area.

As with a fireplace inside, you can choose from a wood or gas fuel source depending on your needs and there are a lot of options when it comes to design. Choose to build a traditional fireplace with a stone chimney or incorporate it into areas such as your outdoor kitchen, a bench seat or dividing your outdoor dining and living zones.

Click here to view our Howqua® Free Form natural stone walling.

Out in the open

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Outdoor fireplace by Site Design

Unlike an interior fireplace, there are several additional factors to consider when positioning a fireplace out in the open. These include the views from within the house, privacy, screening and the prevailing winds. You’ll also want to ensure you’ve selected the right model that will be an effective heat source rather than simply a visual element.

Read our Essential Checklist for Building An Outdoor Fireplace here. 

For more inspiration about fireplaces, visit our Learning Library.