Edwardian House, South West LondonContemporary Living Room, London
What Houzz contributors are saying:
Don’t lose heat up the chimneyYou can lose a lot of heat through an unused open fireplace. If yours is purely decorative, consider using a chimney balloon to keep warm air in and cold air out. These work by effectively blocking the chimney. They’re designed to inflate and push against all four walls, holding themselves firmly in place. They come with a small vent, which will allow for a little air flow, so your chimney can still ‘breathe’. And if you do wish to use your fireplace at a later date, your balloon can easily be removed.
Swap in mirrorsThe chimney breast is a natural focal point for a living room scheme. In this room, mirrors above the fireplace take the place of a large canvas to brighten the space by bouncing daylight into the room rather than absorbing it. A group looks less formal than a single mirror and an odd number’s a charm for a pleasing arrangement.
Give a quote and be flexibleDon’t assume that a high quote will scare a potential customer away. An informed client won’t necessarily go for the lower price, as they’ll probably appreciate the costs involved in quality workmanship. Give a price range for the potential client to work from. This will allow you to be flexible.“The key to a profitable business is to be adaptable to the consumer’s needs, which does mean you need to be flexible with your pricing,” explains Karpenko. “If we can beat a competitor’s quote and still be profitable then we will do it. You always need to find a golden middle with your client.”Find out how to help your client stick to their budget
Use an alcoveA fireplace is an amazing feature, but in a compact room it can limit the amount of wall space you have to position furniture against. Instead of opting for just shelving in the alcoves either side of the chimney breast, go one step further with a desk. Choose the same wood as other furniture in the room – here the coffee table – and pick a design with drawers so any work in progress can be tidied away.