|Custom design by architect Barbara Bastor|
If you don’t already have a fire “feature” in your outdoor space, chances are you are plotting on how to get one. I know I was until my husband and I built one on our backyard patio. I remember trying to find ideas on the Web, and feeling frustrated. Most were round, and made of stone, and, well, ugly. I wanted something understated and simple. I wish I had found this post–which I’m sharing here–on cool fire pits by landscape designer Kate Wiseman, who has a blog called KatePresents.
Poured in place concrete monolith from Sunset Magazine’s website
Kate, who works out of the San Diego area, admits she has a thing for pour-in-place concrete.
I’m totally with her on that!
Precast concrete half sphere by Solus Decor
If we hadn’t built a rectangular fire pit, I would have loved to use one of these concrete bowls. This deeper shape is dramatic.
Custom fire pit by Molly Wood of Molly Wood Garden Design
When considering a fire feature, we found that fire pits are a fraction of the cost of most outdoor fireplaces, and they function more like a camp fire, in that many people can gather around them, as opposed to a few who park next to them.
(Okay, you have to check out Molly Wood’s blog.
She’s a bit intimidating for me–$$$$–but a beautiful blog!)
Precast concrete fire bowl, also used by Molly Wood
I like the way the round stones are echoed by the smaller stones around the base. I assume they are just covering up or filling in something, but it’s a nice effect.
Custom fireplace (or perhaps fire wall?) by Joan Grabel of Park Slope Design
I would call this more of a fireplace, but it’s still simple, low-profile and inviting.
Custom fire pit faced in Cor-Ten steel by Jay Griffith
I like the way you can sit right next to the flame if you want.
Precast concrete fire bowl by Charles Swanson
Great color! I think all you do is mix in some pigment with the concrete.
Another nice bowl shape with the thicker sides.
Yet another bowl. To me, the more texture or imperfections in the concrete the better. I like the round balls featured in several of these fire pits or bowls. One thing I really don’t like, however, are those colored glass pieces people fill their gas fire pits with. They just look so Miami Vice to me. Maybe clear glass would look okay. But really. YUCK!
This true fire “pit” is a computer rendering that Kate shared on a post where she encouraged readers to “think outside the box” on these fire pits. The back is a panel of CorTen steel with a lazer-etched design of a tree. (I know it’s easy to criticize, but I think I would just go with the sunk-in pit, and skip the CorTen. But it’s really creative!) She didn’t say who designed this. Maybe she did! Way cool!
Thank you, Kate! You have a great eye and design sensibility. I’m way down with anyone who uses the word “restraint” in landscape design. I think you might help inspire some future fire pit owners. Here’s Kate’s helpful Web site: http://www.sageoutdoordesigns.com/
Want More Ideas? Check Out These Books:
- The Ultimate in Outdoor Living: Patagonia!
- Inn Vermont!
- Meet Me in Perris–or Palm Springs!
- Winter Sunsets in Laguna Beach
- Meet Southern California’s BEST Garden Bloggers at the Long Beach Flea!!
- The Ecology Center
- The Succulent Cafe
- Slow Food
- The Ying Yang of Camping at The Bluffs at Sano
- A Teaser for the Venice Home and Garden Tour
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