Today, let’s tackle a common design dilemma: How to decorate a room with an awkward corner fireplace. Whether you’re dealing with a small living space, or navigating the challenges of furniture placement in a larger room, corner fireplaces can present both opportunities and challenges when it comes to creating a stylish and functional space.  And it can create its own set of challenges when your corner fireplace is in a dining room, family room, den, or bedroom.

Let’s go over some room design options that will make the most of this architectural feature.

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Furniture placement in a small room with a corner fireplace

Decorating a small room can be challenging by itself, but with the right furniture placement strategies, you can make the most of your space while still achieving a stylish and functional design. When working with a corner fireplace in a small living room, it’s important to prioritize both comfort and flow.

The first thing to do is to assess the room and the angle of the fireplace before determining the best placement for your main furniture pieces. You will have to consider any doorways or openings into other rooms so you can direct traffic throughout the room effectively. Making a floor plan will help you with positioning the furniture for maximum comfort and flow.

Start with positioning the sofa facing the fireplace at the same angle and see if you can work the rest of your furniture into a comfortable conversation area in front of it.  If you have the room try not to place the furniture up against a wall and instead bring it closer to the fireplace. This may be difficult to do in small rooms.  

If you have a large area rug that fits your existing furniture arrangement you could start by placing that in the space first instead of moving large pieces of furniture around.

corner fireplace with basic furniture arrangement

Side tables are essential for convenience so be sure they can be strategically placed near seating areas without cluttering the space. Make sure your coffee table has room both in front of the fireplace and enough room to walk around it or you may need to move the arrangement further back in the room.

Additionally, consider incorporating a floor lamp or wall sconces instead of another table with a lamp to add both ambiance and functionality to the room without taking up valuable floor space.

When arranging furniture around a corner fireplace in a small space, it’s crucial to maintain a sense of balance and proportion. If you have all of your large furniture and fireplace in one corner of the room, the room will feel off balance.  You can remedy this by placing a large armoire or built-in bookcases on the opposite wall to balance it out.  Or you may have to move your sofa or sectional sofa back against a flat wall.

Most importantly, avoid overcrowding the space by keeping furniture arrangements open and airy, and be mindful of traffic flow to ensure you have enough space to easily move throughout the room.

corner fireplace furniture arrangement showing traffic flow thru the room

Furniture placement in a Large, Open Floor Plan Room with a corner fireplace

In larger rooms with an open floor plan, a corner fireplace can serve as a focal point to anchor the space and define different zones. When designing the furniture layout in these expansive areas, consider the overall flow of the room and how each piece contributes to the overall aesthetic.

Start by positioning your main seating arrangement, such as sofas and armchairs, around the fireplace to create a cozy seating area. In larger rooms, you have the luxury of incorporating additional furniture pieces like extra accent chairs, a console table behind the sofa, ottomans, bookcases, and built-ins, to even other furniture like a desk or dining table to fill out the space and provide extra seating areas.

To maintain balance and harmony in a large, open floor plan room, it’s essential to repeat design elements throughout the space. One way people do this is to use the same fireplace surround material in another part of the room such as for a backsplash in a kitchen/living room combo.  Consider incorporating cohesive color schemes, patterns, and textures to tie the room together and create a cohesive look.  

Furniture arrangement for a large room with a corner fireplace

Use area rugs to define different sections of the room. And don’t forget to balance out your large furniture around the space.

What to Do If You Have a TV and/or Entertainment Center in the Room with a corner fireplace

In modern living spaces, TVs and entertainment centers are often a central feature, presenting additional challenges when it comes to furniture placement around a corner fireplace. When integrating these multimedia elements into your room’s design, it’s important to strike a balance between functionality and style.

If you have a TV or entertainment center in the room, consider positioning it on an adjacent wall to the fireplace to create a convenient layout. Ideally, if you have wall space on each side of the corner fireplace you would want to create some built-ins on each side to balance it out.  You could still put the TV on one side and books and accessories and/or art on the other side and achieve a balanced look.  

corner fireplace with adjacent tv entertainment center.  Best furniture arrangement

Or you could also put the entertainment center on the opposite side of the room. This allows for easy viewing without detracting from the fireplace’s role as the main focal point.  To achieve this you would need to place your main furniture at a right angle to the fireplace so you can view the fireplace and TV at the same time.  It just depends on which direction you look.

corner fireplace with tv entertainment center opposite

Of course, you also have the option of putting the TV above the fireplace and treating it as one element.  If you don’t like the idea of how the TV looks over a fireplace then you can disguise it with a frame and a screen saver or purchase a setup made to disguise your TV.  This also makes a great DIY project if you’re a little handy.

furniture arrangement with tv over the corner fireplace

What to Put on the adjacent walls of your corner fireplace

The area next to a corner fireplace offers an opportunity to enhance the overall aesthetic of the room with carefully curated furniture and decor. Consider incorporating accent chairs with side tables flanking the fireplace facing into the room, or bookshelves to complement the fireplace while adding visual interest and practicality to the space.  See the image above.

If you just have a sparse area on either side of the fireplace then a tall plant, a large piece of artwork, or a large mirror will fill in that space nicely without taking up too much square footage.  These items will help to make the corner fireplace feel larger and help to make the room feel more connected.

How to Decorate a corner fireplace mantel

The mantel of a corner fireplace, just like a traditional fireplace, serves as a blank canvas for showcasing your style and creativity. When decorating the mantel, consider incorporating a mix of artwork, mirrors, and decorative items to add visual interest and personality to the space.  

If you have a deep, corner wall above the mantel then you will need to add something to take up some of that space like a large plant, mirror, or a large vase.

By incorporating these furniture placement strategies and design tips, you can create a stylish and functional living space that maximizes the potential of your corner fireplace, whether you’re working with a small room or a larger open floor plan area. With careful planning and attention to detail, you can transform your corner fireplace into a beautiful focal point that enhances the overall look and feel of your home.

“I love hearing from you! Whether you have a question about arranging furniture or want to share your tips and experiences, feel free to leave a comment below. I read every one and would be thrilled to hear from you!”

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