Our Favorite Fillers for a Cool Summer Fireplace


If you have a fireplace, it’s probably the focal point of the room, with your furniture arranged to face it. And while a roaring fire in the colder months provides curl-up comfort and welcome ambiance, what do you do when the weather warms? Or, perhaps, yours is a non-working fireplace to begin with. Here are a few easy ways to dress up that bare, sooty interior, making your fireplace a cool place for the summer months.


Go Green

Placing shapely potted plants, such as ferns or philodendron, inside or in front of the fireplace is a no-fail solution. Full or broad-leafed plants fill out the empty space beautifully while adding a bright and airy look that’s especially refreshing in the summer heat.


Conjure Romance

Candles are a popular fireplace filler, and for good reason. Whether lit or not, candles recreate that same cozy mood that comes from the glow of a real fire. Just be sure to vary the size and height of the candles to fill out the space. Definitely light them and let the wax drip down to avoid the overly staged look unused candles convey.


Reflect Style

Filling the interior of your fireplace with a mirror not only bounces light around the room; it also makes a small space feel larger. And if you have a colorful rug covering the floor, a mirror will reflect it back into the room—an artful bonus.


Below are a few more quick summer fireplace makeovers:

  • Stacked firewood, especially aspen logs
  • A large basket full of seashells and coral
  • Vases of varying sizes and heights
  • Stacks of old hardcover books, pages facing out
  • A dramatic piece of framed or canvas artwork


Are you inspired to do something with your unused fireplace? Share your favorite fireplace fillers in the comments below.

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply


    April 6, 2021

    Is the fireplace in these pics is stone? I really love this idea and any pointers on how I can get the look would be appreciated.

  2. Reply

    Mary McGrath

    March 3, 2015

    i have a bio ethanol fireplace in the wall. Any ideas for summer filler will be appreciated b
    I love Ballard!