The Studio yearbook of decorative art — 1907

Page: 101
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THE fireplace, in a cold climate like ours, is necessarily the
most important fixture in the room, and such that architects
and designers rightly bestow much attention upon, so that
the fireplace supplies in effect the keynote of the general surroundings
and decoration. The amount of space occupied by the fireplace of
course varies in accordance with the size of the room. In small
rooms, for instance, narrow and upright mantels like those executed
by Messrs. H. C. Cleaver and George Wright (page 103) are suffi-
cient, but where there is more space available the fireplace may
well extend to larger and more imposing dimensions. In the case
of old-fashioned open fireplaces care should be taken that the shaft
be so constructed as to provide a sufficiently strong upward current
to carry all the smoke away. This precaution need not in the least
detract from the picturesqueness of the fireplace itself, but if it be
neglected no amount of decorative attractiveness can atone for the
defect of a fire that smokes into the room.

In the case of Mr. Guy Dawber’s open fireplace with hob grate
(page 105) considerable assthetic effect is obtained by the setting of
the narrow tiles edgewise and in patterns. The coved projection
in the front of the chimney breast immediately below the ceiling
is a feature which has great ornamental capabilities and might
(as witness several handsome examples in the famous Musee Plantin
at Antwerp) be introduced with advantage much more frequently
than it is.

The metal hood which appears in the large open fireplace
designs by Messrs. Treadwell and Martin (pages 113 to 115) is
meant to provide against the already-mentioned nuisance of smoky
chimneys. In one of the above-named the picturesque treatment
of the wooden framework is worth notice. It cannot be called
carving, for it consists merely in a series of incisions in the wood,
and yet the effect is as striking as it is original. Another item
that adds to the old-world appearance of the whole is the quaint
chimney crane in wrought iron.

The admirable effect to be obtained by the simple device of
studied proportions and plain rectilinear forms is exemplified by the
fireplaces and mantels by Mr. George Walton (pages 116 to 118).
The design by Mr. R. S. Lorimer (page 106), with its quasi-
Gothic supports and wide surround of Dutch-looking tiles,—these,
combined with a fire on the modern well principle, illustrate the
adaptability of older forms to new requirements. Some of the
designs by the Teale Fireplace Company again embody the well-fire


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