Serving the Naperville Community
A fire pit in your Wheaton, IL, landscape would offer a warm, cozy spot where everyone will want to gather. If you are planning on adding a fire pit to your backyard, here are three ways to make sure it becomes the center of your outdoor living.
Related: Modern Landscaping Design Ideas to Try in 2020 in Naperville, IL
1. Consider Location
The location of your fire pit could be the most important consideration. Does this mean it needs to be right smack in the middle of the patio? Not necessarily—in fact, you may want to avoid putting a fire pit in the center of the patio unless the patio is very large. Keep in mind you would not want to run into challenges with the placement of lounge or dining furniture around the fire pit while you do need to leave enough room to comfortably seat a small crowd.
For those reasons, look into offsetting the fire pit to one side of the main patio, or you could create a separate space for it altogether. This could lead to a dedicated fire area without impeding traffic on the patio. It’s also an opportunity to take advantage of a view.
Whether you have a gas-fired or wood-burning fire pit, consider placing it in a sheltered area where strong winds won’t affect your experience.
2. Choose the Size Carefully
Part of deciding on the location is how big of a fire pit/seating area you want. It does not have to be massive to become a focal point. Even a small fire pit can be a focal point if positioned and designed correctly.
Plan for seating around the fire pit (and a fire pit size) that will allow for both group gatherings or cozy, intimate one-on-one time. If space is tight, consider seat walls, either with or without back rests. Seat walls visually define the space and allow more people to share the space.
Also avoid completely enclosing the space with walls. Leave some room for people to stand, or to pull up a few chairs. If your fire pit is positioned to take advantage of a view, make sure that the entry to the fire pit area doesn’t also face the view: offsetting the entry will give most people enjoying the fire the option to also take in the beauty of your landscape.
Most fire pits are somewhat lower than seat walls, so consider the elevation of the fire pit area as a way to draw the eye toward the flames. A sunken fire pit area can draw out many conversations long into the night. It encourages people to gather, it holds heat very well, and it offers a sense of privacy. By contrast, an exposed fire pit—for example, on a hillside overlooking a stunning view—tends to give people an expansive and uplifting feeling.
3. Opt for the Right Materials
Fire pit materials depend on whether the fire pit is portable or permanent. Portable fire pits offer a bit more flexibility in terms of placement, but you may find this option to be an inconvenience if you entertain frequently. A permanent fire pit gives you the opportunity to use masonry that complements the patio and the home—and this approach positions the fire pit as an important focal point rather than a temporary addition. A fire pit does not have to match vertical surfaces around it. In fact, you can create a stunning contrast by using different materials on the fire pit and the surrounding seat walls.
Whether your backyard vibe is rustic or sophisticated, a fire pit could be a hit with everyone. With choices in materials, shapes, sizes, and fuel type, you can choose a fire pit that’s perfect for your uses and your aesthetics.
Related: 4 Aesthetic Themes to Consider for Your Landscaping in Naperville, IL