What to Do With a Dysfunctional Fireplace

So Josh and Erin have a beautiful fireplace in their apartment, complete with marble panels and a carved wood mantle. Really, really pretty. But it’s dysfunctional. The flue (sp?) doesn’t work, has never worked, and has no plans for working in the future. We can’t ignore it because it’s the first thing you see when you come into their house. So to make it feel warm and cozy this winter, this is my solution:

We’re going to stack some really beautiful aspen logs in the fireplace. Then we’ll mark the tops of the logs in about 12 places and use a neighbor’s drill press to make 1.25″ wide x 1″ deep holes at the marks. We’ll put an inexpensive but nice-looking candle in each hole and the whole thing should give a pretty good glow without needing a functional flue — or requiring the sometimes difficult task of building a fire.

I like this solution because it’s good-looking and feels like a fire without being cheesy. I like that it’s inexpensive and easy to replace if it gets too worn. And I like the candles I found. I like the shape and I like that they’re kind of industrial. I especially like that you can get them in bulk. Because for this to really work, Erin and Josh need to feel like they can light this up as often as they want and they’re not going to run out of candles.

The goal is to have their house ready by Thanksgiving. Wish me luck. And if anyone finds similar candles at a better price, please let me know.

6 thoughts on “What to Do With a Dysfunctional Fireplace”

  1. I got a giant, cheap pack of shabbat jewish candles in the grocery store for cheap, but that was in Brooklyn. something tells me they are not as hot an item in westchester (?).

  2. I bought a ton of candles just like that for our food storage at IKEA. Not sure how they’d compare to these of yours, but they were cheap, and available in bulk.

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