How to design Fireplace joinery for winter comfort | Balnei & Colina | Balnei & Colina

Designing your home for winter comfort

Designing your home for winter comfort

We tend to spend more time at home during the winter months and it’s comforting to relax after a hard days work in front of a welcoming and toasty fire. It's worthwhile making every room in your home warm and inviting so that it not only looks fabulous but feels comfortable as well. Your living room, one of the most used areas in a home, should be comfortable and livable all year round.  

A fireplace can be a stand out feature in your living room. Whether gas, electric, ethanol fuelled or wood burning, adding an inbuilt joinery solution can offer the perfect blend of form and function.

Now that winter has truly arrived this maybe an opportune time to update your living room space. Balnei & Colina renovations specialise in custom joinery solutions including fireplace surrounds and custom home joinery. Fireplace joinery can create a focal point in your room, offering increased functionality through custom storage as well as aesthetic appeal. You’ll be wanting to spend more winter evenings snuggled up in front of a beautiful fireplace/heater setting with beautiful custom joinery surrounds. 

In this month’s B&C Home Journal we share 4 clever design ideas to help you weather the cooler months by creating living room joinery that will provide comfort and functionality all year round. 

The team at Balnei & Colina


Balnei & Colina Fireplace Custom Home Joinery


A built-in fireplace with complementing custom joinery solution can create a beautiful focal point for your living room, consume far less space than a freestanding heating solution, and can be designed to blend seamlessly into a wall. At Balnei & Colina renovations, the fireplace, together with its location is used as the foundation for the custom joinery component of the design.

The Balnei & Colina custom joinery experts suggest taking into consideration the location of your exisiting heating connections and the configuration of your room when designing a custom joinery solution that includes heating. At Balnei & Colina renovations, we also evaluate the traffic flow in and out of the living area, adjacent rooms, amount of natural light, air circulation, to create the perfect custom fireplace joinery solution. 

Design Tip: In-built heating solutions will need to be installed in a non-combustible surround casing, with adequate ventilation. Balnei & Colina renovations use zero clearance boxes to place a fireplace in a wall built with non-combustible materials - the same method we use to install in-built outdoor BBQ solutions and outdoor kitchens.


Image credit: Central Park Residences Melbourne


Make a list of the items you need stored. A fireplace is commonplace in a living room, a multifunctional space, where we undertake many activities like, entertaining guests, watching TV, listening to our favourite music, reading, playing games and much more, so it's important to note down all the items you will need to store in your new fireplace custom joinery unit. This might also include TV placement, sound system and tech accessory installations eg IPAD stations, and custom storage for books, games, blankets, photo albums, toys and the list goes on. 

Think about how you use the space daily, what you need stored, what needs to be easily accessed and what you want to display eg a sculptural piece or your special edition Harry Potter series, whatever the must haves are, communicate these to your Balnei & Colina custom joinery design expert.   

Listing what needs to be stored within your fireplace custom cabinetry solution will help determine the amount of storage required, as well as the type of storage you’ll need for eg closed vs open cabinets or floating shelves.

Design Tip: Thinking of buying a heating solution for your living space? Ensure you consider your lifestyle, budget as well long term use and maintenance. For example, a wood burning fireplace offers warmth and comfort in a traditional sense however, the reality of routine maintenance including cleaning, lingering smoke, that comes with a wood burner may dull its appeal overtime to those of us who prefer a cleaner, easier to maintain heating solution like gas.


Image via Pintrest - InDesign Balmain


Now for the fun part - selecting finishes including, materials, colour and accessories. Custom joinery allows you to maximise every inch of available space and gives you the freedom to select a from a wide combination of finishes, materials and hardware to best reflect your style and taste; and will ultimately deliver the best result.

Inject personality into your fireplace custom joinery design with colour and material selection. Style your custom joinery to reflect the look you are trying to achieve, whether it be traditional, period or contemporary. 

Your Balnei & Colina custom joinery specialist can assist in selecting your custom joinery finishes so that your fireplace custom joinery reflects both your personal style, and the architecture of your home.


Image credit: Making your home


For the final touch it’s time to add decor to your completed fireplace and living room custom joinery. Add decor, like photos, special momentos, sculptural items, your favourite books and collectibles that reflect you and your family. Make your home feel lived in by showcasing items that are meaningful and intimate. Talking pieces and elements that tell your story always feel more personal, welcoming and interesting. 


Image credit: Jacqui Way Photography


Here are our top styling tips for a fireplace mantel and built-in living room joinery:

  • LESS IS MORE - showcase several items at a time to avoid cluttering the space. Store excess items close by and use them to update or change things up every few months. 
  • SCALE/PROPORTION/TEXTURE - Be sure to group items with differing shapes and sizes for visual interest. Include items with texture and sort decorative items together in groups of 3 or 5.
  • CONNECT COLOUR - Pick items with similar tones and palette and ensure colours chosen complement your existing home and joinery. 
  • ADD STATEMENT PIECES - Ensure you have hero pieces that make a statement for eg ornate sculpture, vase, urn or vintage art. 
  • REVIEW- Re-visit your custom joinery every so often and update decor whenever you feel you need a change. Your home should evolve with you and as your life and interests change be sure to reflect this in your decor choices.


Still unsure how to create a custom joinery solution for your living room? Leave it to the experts at Balnei & Colina Renovations Sydney. Simply book a custom joinery design consultation with a joinery expert today on 1300 450 320 or drop us an email You can also send us your project details via this contact form

To stay up to date with the latest home renovation trends, visit us at or connect with us via Facebook or Instagram.


Image via Pintrest

Image credit: Whelan Master Builders

Image via HomeBeautiful

Image credit: Destination Living

Image credit: Kristina Soljo Photography

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