I used to be laying in mattress on a current wet evening, watching Love is Blind (so good), the fireside on low as I clicked in to take pleasure in Orlando’s new extremely private and fulfilling sub-stack, The Misplaced Arrow (have you ever subscribed to it but?). It was a relatively hilarious rant about his #1 design pet peeve. I laughed lots (as a result of he’s a humorous and relatable author) even whereas he was pointedly speaking shit about my very family room and bed room. No, he wasn’t saying “Emily Henderson’s fire is the worst,” after all not, however he HATES TVs over fireplaces and makes a damning case towards them. And what I hate? After I’m instructed I ought to NEVER do one thing on the subject of design. OOH that will get me riled up as a result of how we use our house is 100% as much as us, for our personal pleasure and pleasure (and normally comes with sure limitations). That’s why I’m right here to make a case towards his excessive rule towards a really factor that I take pleasure in. I believed it could be enjoyable to cross-examine and make a case, not essentially for TVs over fireplaces, however simply in protection of them and speak about when/why and tips on how to do it proper (he’ll disagree with the notion that it’s ever proper, however I’ve some fairly stable concepts). Let’s dance:)
Pay attention, I agree with him that in an ideal world, you don’t have a TV over a hearth as a result of you’ve gotten a separate TV room, however even in that TV room you may additionally need or have already got a hearth. The court docket ought to notice that each situations are clearly privileged. We determined to forego a TV in our present front room as a result of I most popular artwork over TV, however largely as a result of we didn’t want it in right here as a result of we’ve got a separate room proper subsequent to it, devoted to TV. However what if we didn’t? Would placing a TV over the fireside be so dangerous? NO! Would placing the TV on the wall subsequent to the fireside be higher? In my view, no, it could appear to be a rectangle subsequent to a chunky rectangle and possibly look even dumber.
My evaluation of his hatred for TVs over fireplaces is that A. He isn’t an enormous TV particular person (possibly?), B. He doesn’t have a hearth in his front room or he has at all times had a straightforward format for this example, C. He doesn’t at present have youngsters, due to this fact has particular views concerning the design of a house that may not be as livable to many people who’ve foregone some design pleasantries within the title of practicality and livability, and D. He lives (largely) in Southern California the place fireplaces aren’t as a lot of a temper and warmth necessity as they’re in areas the place its chilly and darkish within the winter. What I discovered fascinating about his piece (once more, you need to learn it right here) was that he likened a TV over the fireside to stainless-steel home equipment and granite counter tops – a form of wealth signifier promoting level that was constructed into many new builds or McManions throughout a sure interval. This stuff are basically examples that these homes are high-end sufficient to have a flat-screen TV (which for some time have been so costly, however now by no means). I feel he’s proper about that, which made me like my TV over my fire much less, however I’m not right here to agree with my pal/opposing counsel, I’m right here to defend the TV over the fireside.
So when and why is a TV over a hearth okay? Are you able to do it the place it doesn’t look dumb?
Cause #1: When You Don’t Have Any Different Alternative And You Actually Need To Watch TV In This Room
I’m a giant proponent of having fun with how you reside in your house first, and the design of the house ought to help that enjoyment. Do I need you to purchase enormous reclining sofas? Hmm, actually, I don’t actually care as a result of that’s your alternative. I’m not going to make that alternative as a result of there are nice choices which might be virtually as comfy that may not look so overwhelming, however I additionally admit that sitting on a La-Z-Boy couch will be great so that you do you! I lean thus far into consolation and practicality that lots of my former design pet peeves have been thrown out years in the past (Covid additionally confirmed my want for consolation and practicality). I feel design directives like this are good to have, however USING your property to your personal enjoyment needs to be your #1 precedence. I say this whereas understanding that I’ve some furnishings that’s higher to have a look at than to sit down on, so I’m not a shining instance of this both (though in protection of myself, I wouldn’t purchase these items now, they’re a maintain over from years in the past after I didn’t prioritize consolation/practicality over type). Does every bit of furnishings should be essentially the most comfy? Nope. In some rooms, you don’t want that stage of consolation and a few stunning items are price having as a result of they shift the entire context of the room in a great way. So I’m not saying that we must always all dwell in La-Z-Boys in each room, but when the room doesn’t meet the aim of you being in it since you’ve opted towards one thing sensible, then that’s an issue to me. In reality, I’ve been identified to really say to mates who don’t use their front room EVER, “are you positive you don’t desire a TV in right here?” as a result of not utilizing a room for worry of it not wanting good with a TV in it’s the larger crime (once more, particularly due to good wanting artwork TVs like The Body). Do I feel that Orlando is being a bit of snobby? After all, and so am I about lots of issues. Possibly calling us “choosy” is what we’d favor:) It’s the job of design influencers to assist information us to nice selections in order that we love our house extra, and his vehemence towards the TV over the fireside is a noble one. I simply worry that it’s not at all times an possibility except you sacrifice your consolation, practicality, and livability. It’s YOUR HOME, you do no matter you need in it so as to find it irresistible and have it serve YOUR functions.
The prosecutor/plaintiff, Orlando admits that it may be difficult to discover a non-TV over fire format that is sensible and he gives for readers to ship him pictures of their room and he’ll re-lay it out for them, guaranteeing that he can discover a approach to not have the TV above the fireside. I’d personally like to see how he does that as a result of in my expertise, splitting the focal factors could make a room really feel chaotic and inevitably somebody, a number of individuals truly, find yourself having a foul viewing seat. Clearly, some rooms are completely arrange to do that naturally, however many are simply not. I feel that having it above the TV (hear, if I’m being trustworthy I’m speaking about Body TVs) seems completely effective in the event you can placed on a pleasant piece of artwork when not in use. Would I relatively have precise artwork? After all, however once more, it’s about having fun with your personal house and having it meet your wants.
Cause #2: When It Can Be Low Sufficient Not To Harm Your Neck
Admittedly they are often too excessive in some homes, everyone knows this. On the mountain home, in our household room, ours was larger than I wished. That is normally as a result of firebox sizes and clearances. I want there have been extra that have been low and broad that weren’t so up to date wanting (I don’t thoughts some linear ones, however I don’t love that they’re normally simply rocks as an alternative of fake logs). So to ensure that the fireside field to be scaled proper for the room they’re normally kinda massive, after which once you had the same old 12″ clearance above it and add a mantel, your TV will be fairly darn excessive. However I’ve discovered that in case your couch is deep sufficient to lounge in, it’s completely effective. A shallow couch could be a drawback in case you are compelled to sit down upright, however in the event you can lean again then your neck will be salvaged.
Cause #3: A Excessive TV Over A Hearth In A Bed room Is Really A Good Factor
We knew that we’d need two TV choices in our house – one for teenagers and one for us, particularly when having individuals over. Throughout lockdown on the mountain home, we solely had one TV and infrequently needed to set the youngsters up of their room with the laptop computer if we wished to look at one thing much less acceptable – which was effective as a result of they have been 4 and 6, however we wished to ensure that for this home we had two choices for these Saturday nights when Brian and I truly wish to watch an R rated film (we typically are so drained and go to mattress proper after them so except we carve out grownup TV time, we watch ZERO grown up exhibits/motion pictures). So we put a TV over the fireside in our bed room they usually can watch their rubbish within the household room whereas we watch Severance. It needs to be famous that we’ve watched TV possibly 10 instances in our bed room since we moved in 6 months in the past – so not lots, however I’m nonetheless glad we’ve got the choice. We’re each massive readers (not being pretentious, I actually learn romance novels) and infrequently watch TV anyway post-lockdown so possibly we didn’t want it in right here in any case.
TVs in bedrooms are an entire different controversial debate which I’m not normally an enormous fan of, however once more as a result of it’s a Body, I don’t thoughts it. We thought lengthy and arduous about placing one in right here and once more solely did it as a result of we wished to have two TV viewing choices (we’ve got since put one in our visitor room as a result of we by chance purchased one too massive for our bed room wall whereas we lived within the rental home – earlier than the fireside wall was even designed). So if we’ve got lots of youngsters over and wish to shove them away all of them climb on the visitor mattress.
Now, again to my case when you find yourself mendacity down on a mattress you have to just remember to can see over your ft. So in a bed room, you truly need your TV larger so you may watch whereas mendacity down. And, FURTHERMORE ORLANDO, there’s good simplicity of getting each focal factors on the identical wall, permitting for symmetry subsequent to it (one thing I LOVE in a bed room).
Cause #4: I Don’t Like Cut up Focal Factors, I Favor Symmetry
In case your room has the proper format then you may loosen up, and have your TV on a unique wall than your fire, however most rooms don’t. I personally don’t love when you’ve gotten two competing focal factors – and each sq. packing containers. So in my thoughts, it truly seems higher to have a Body TV over your fire than to have it awkwardly floating on a unique wall. Orlando makes use of the above instance of how he’s achieved it, and this room is fortunate as a result of there’s a clean wall proper subsequent to the fireside so actually it’s a straightforward alternative, however what if there was a window there as an alternative? Would a Body TV above the fireside look that completely different than the oblong portray? No! It could look effective!
Cause #5: If You’ve Opted For Home windows As a substitute Of Wall House
That is the problem we’ve got confronted each single time – the place we’ve got designed the home with the window and door plan, choosing extra home windows and negating the proper wall place to have a TV and fireside be separate. We have now achieved this in our household room on the mountain home, our bed room on the farm, and likewise in Ken/Katie’s future front room. We consciously made this alternative of prioritizing home windows and pure gentle OVER the power to separate the TV and fireside. Now, I’ll say that in case you are constructing new or doing an entire rework my favourite mixture (ought to it’s acceptable) is what we did in our present household/television room – to place a stove-style fire NEXT to the TV, thus sharing the identical focal wall, not being two massive packing containers subsequent to one another and but you may take pleasure in taking a look at each the identical time. The rationale we didn’t do that in Ken/Katie’s future front room is as a result of the peak/scale of the room is way too excessive/massive for a small range fire. We additionally wished to have the ability to see the TV from the kitchen whereas cooking/hanging so it must be massive and better than Orlando would seemingly need it to be. When your couch is again far sufficient, the next TV is FINE.
So If We Need Each A TV And A Hearth In The Identical Room (And View Them At The Identical Time) What Ought to We Do??
I’ve thought of this A LOT and I’ve some stable options. By the way in which, I do know that a lot of you’ll make the case AGAINST having a hearth in any respect, and it’s one which I wish to agree with in idea, however lengthy darkish, moist, winters are arduous sufficient to get via. A fire that creates ambiance, and warmth, and helps your temper which is an excellent factor. In the event you don’t desire a fire, don’t have one. I actually don’t have a automobile as a result of I don’t like driving (however sadly it’s changing into extraordinarily obvious that I do actually want one which I’m bummed about) – all of us have our issues that we take pleasure in and improve our lives whereas right here on earth. There are numerous of us who recognize fireplaces immensely for ambiance, warmth, and a essential winter temper enhance. Do I feel you want one in LA? Nope. However up right here, it will get used a ton and loved when it’s chilly, moist, and darkish. And naturally, you aren’t allowed to place in wooden ones in lots of states, so we opted for a direct-vent gasoline range in our household room. I’m additionally very very excited to see how the electrical fire know-how advances (it’s getting higher yearly). However immediately we aren’t speaking concerning the execs and cons of fireplaces. As a substitute, we’re addressing IF you decide for a fireside and TV how do you design it to look the perfect?
- Put your TV over the fireside, make it as little as potential, and go darkish with the entire fire (ought to that make sense). The rationale we did a brick fire in our bed room was to color all of it one darkish shade and have the firebox and TV disappear extra. It’s my private choice that new gasoline fireplaces (which for essentially the most half is your solely possibility in the event you’re constructing new) look higher on darkish fireplaces as a result of they’re black metallic and glass.
- Design your TV/fire wall to have a shared point of interest, however do a stove-style fire as an alternative. Once more, that is what we did right here in our present TV room and it’s a GREAT mixture IMHO. It’s a shared focal wall however they’re completely different shapes. The TV will be decrease, making Orlando’s neck extra comfy ought to he come over to look at Love is Blind with you.
- Put your TV over your fire, however design the fireside to be much less formal, i.e extra acceptable for a TV. Though we may have designed the mountain home household room to have fewer home windows (we most likely didn’t want any or each) and we may have achieved the stove-style fire + TV mixture I spoke of above, I feel that the plaster remedy lent itself simply to an informal household room. I feel what bugs Orlando (and myself) is a brilliant formal-looking fire encompass and mantel with a giant cumbersome TV on high. However once more, if it’s a Body TV I don’t assume it’s an enormous deal.
Finally I feel my pal Orlando and I agree that there are actually some much less good methods to mix a TV and a hearth, however simply to say unequivocably that TVs over fireplaces are at all times horrible is what I discovered hilariously incorrect and deserving of this rebuttal.
I feel what we’d each agree on is that in an ideal world, you’d have a separate TV room, the place the TV is at eye stage, sharing the focal wall with a hearth that you simply use – like my pal’s basement that we designed final 12 months. But when that’s not your life/home, I’m right here to let you know that it’s OK and there are methods to do it the place you may proceed to take pleasure in your personal house, with out feeling such as you’ve dedicated a design crime. 🙂
**We’ll be attempting out a brand new remark coverage immediately, as a result of the truth that posts like this may be actually controversial, with statements that somebody would possibly really feel offended by, or one would possibly wish to assault these of us for even having a hearth – one thing that we all know to inherently not be nice for the atmosphere. So we’ll monitor feedback and publish something contributing to this dialog, and never publish something that creates negativity, environmental evangelism, or frankly saying something damaging about my pal, Orlando. 🙂 In the event you don’t like him or me, merely don’t learn 🙂
Opening Picture Credit: Photograph by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | From: Mountain Home Reveal: How We Designed Our Tremendous Child-Pleasant Household Room