Eons ago, fire was one of humankind’s most life-altering discoveries, so it’s no wonder that even today, we find comfort around the warm glow of a fire.
Getting an invitation to come over for a fire or host one yourself is a trend that’s been growing in popularity. And if the selection of outdoor furniture and accessories for backyard fires is any indication, his delightful pastime isn’t going anywhere.
I think I speak for everyone when I say we’re okay with that.
Ten years ago, you would have been hard-pressed to find a fire pit in a store. These days you have plenty of choices in nearly every big box, home goods store.
There are even plenty of DIY fire pits out there, like this sturdy one made by cutting the top off of an old home propane tank and welding feet to it.
And what’s more, the fire pit gathering place is one of the most common backyard DIY projects.
Folks are planning permanent outdoor spaces to gather around the fire all year long. Once you add in a beautiful water feature, why would you want to leave your backyard at all?
If a backyard fire space is your next big project, we’ve got some great ideas for you to check out; whether you’re doing it yourself or hiring a professional landscaper. Any one of these beautiful spaces is perfect for s’mores, wienie roasts, book clubs and birthday parties, or an evening by yourself gazing into the flames.
1. Ready In a Weekend
For the do-it-yourselfer who doesn’t want to mess around with a long and drawn-out project, consider a simple setup based around the supplies most commonly available at your local landscape supply retailer.
Landscaping sand, pea gravel, pavers, fire pit bricks and a few of those popular Adirondack-style chairs that pop up every summer are all you need for an outdoor fire area that’s ready to use in a weekend. Pick up your supplies Friday after work, and you could be enjoying a fire in your new fire pit by Sunday evening.
2. Tabletop Gas Fire Pit
Gas fire pits are an increasingly popular option. Having an open flame in the backyard becomes much safer when you can turn your fire pit on and off with the twist of a nob. You don’t have to worry about flyaway sparks or embers either.
Many gas fire pits are incorporated into outdoor furniture pieces, serving double duty. Consider a space that offers a table for drinks or food, as well as a nice gas fire.
3. The Chiminea
These beautiful southwest stoves are an excellent option if you’ve already got a great backyard setup and you’re just lacking the fire. Traditionally, a chiminea is made of clay, but these days you can find them in both clay and metal. And they come in a vast array of sizes to suit your space needs. This charming chubby fire pit is a great alternative to the open pits you see so often.
A chiminea can easily be stored away if you won’t be using it in the colder months.
4. Ready, Set, Relax
Not everyone has the time to devote to building an entire outdoor space for a fire. Or maybe you’re not particularly handy. That’s okay!
Because of the popularity of outdoor fire pits, you can easily purchase everything you need for the perfect gathering spot without building a thing. This entire setup came from one of those big-box home improvement stores. And the hardest part was arranging the furniture. Even the gas fire pit is ready to go once you hook up the propane tank.
5.The Rugged Naturalist
If you’ve got access to natural stone, consider a fire pit that seamlessly rises from a stone patio into a rugged fire ring. This is a great option if you want an area that fits in with your backyard rather than something more modern that’s meant to contrast. It gives the area a more cohesive and natural feel.
6. The Modern Minimalist
If you prefer clean lines and open space, why not plan something with bold geometric lines. A circular patio made with red pavers and large boulders to form your fire pit creates the perfect centerpiece in your backyard. This bold and dramatic look will instantly draw the eye, beckoning you to come and sit by the fire.
7. The Retreat
A patio built around the fire pit and surrounded by chairs, placed away from the house, creates privacy and makes this social space a destination unto itself. A wood boardwalk leading to the patio not only provides sure footing but also builds a bit of excitement as you walk from the house to the patio, a bag of marshmallows in hand.
8. A Pop of Color
A simple layout can easily be dressed up with a pop of color. Consider placing brightly colored chairs around the fire pit. This is also a great way to refresh an older backyard space that could use a little TLC; instead of redoing the entire space, power wash those old chairs and give them a fresh coat of paint in a cheery color. You’ll save money, and you may find yourself enjoying an evening by the fire more often.
9. Grill-Top Fire Pit
Food and fire go hand in hand. If you rarely have a fire without cooking or toasting something over it, consider a kettle-style fire pit with a built-in grill top. You’ll make it that much easier to incorporate these two favorites.
Suddenly, this space becomes even more versatile; forget just having fires in the evening; am I the only one wondering how many pancakes you could fit on that thing?
10. Outdoor Fireplace
Although it’s a serious undertaking, the classic look of a fireplace is always infinitely more welcoming when it’s built outdoors. And a fireplace offers a serious advantage to many open-pit options – the smoke goes up the chimney.
Many an evening has been ruined by playing musical chairs around the fire, trying to get away from the smoke. A fireplace is not only practical but has a timeless look to it that never goes out of style.
11. Free-Spirit Fire Pit
This boho-inspired backyard incorporates a fire pit dug into the ground and plenty of fun seating options. Adirondack chairs, hammock swings, even stumps that double as tables, there’s plenty of seating for everyone. The variety of the seating is all tied together with the blue color scheme. And the pea gravel keeps embers and sparks from becoming a fire hazard.
12. The Classic
There’s a reason this classic setup has lasted for so long – simplicity. At the end of the day, you can’t beat the traditional rustic setup of log stumps and a rock fire ring. If you’re short on space, time or cash, the raw materials can usually be found with a quick trip to the woods. If you burn wood to heat your home, I’ll bet you’ve got everything you need already.
I hope we’ve given you plenty of ideas to build your dream backyard fire pit. Don’t forget to invite us over when it’s finished!
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Including Sunday ramblings from our editor, Tracey, as well as “What’s Up Wednesday” our roundup of what’s in season and new article updates and alerts.