Looking for history information on Fireplace / Fire surrounds you need for your Dolls House
1.Iron Age onwards humans, sought to cook food and heat their homes with a fire source contained within their dwelling.
2.18th century where it became obvious that the differing requirements for cooking and heating would result in the creation of appliances designed specifically with each function in mind.
The middle class were becoming more affluent and demanded houses that separated kitchen, sitting room and dining room.
Their upwardly mobile aspirations found cooking and eating in one room unacceptable.Finally, the Industrial Revolution had generated a material ideal for the construction of heating stoves - cast iron.
In the 17th century, country gentlemen had begun to experiment with stove like designs
3.19th century, the love showed by the British for open fires limited the demand for stoves in the UK in the Black Country. The 'working class' could not afford the coal to heat themselves properly, let alone 'expensive' stoves to improve the way the fuel burnt.
The middle class within cities used gas fires while country dwellers did not like the aesthetics of these heavily decorated appliances that looked out of place in their demure houses. Among the landed gentry and new enriched, stoves were popular but not as a heating source for public rooms
Large kitchens, servant's halls or nurseries might boast a stove but the rooms seen by visitors would include an open fire which was fed and cleaned by servants throughout the first sixty years of the twentieth century stoves sold primarily to the commercial sector - to the growing numbers of offices, shops, railway waiting rooms and public buildings
CAST IRON OPEN FIRES
The first heating appliances to be made in cast iron were ranges for the kitchen and register grates for the living room.
The range, with a proper chimney, situated in a kitchen or scullery was beginning to replace the open fire of the living room which had been the only source of heat for cooking and warmth for over five or more centuries. The range was made of cast components and led to the development of the saucepan and other cooking pots that we know today.
The register grate, which contained the burning coals or wood behind cross bars, often included a small hob for heating a kettle. It was large enough to warm the room but small enough for its limited fuel to be affordable by the impoverished householder.
As the Victorian era progressed, design and fashion changed. In the parlour, the standard register grate began to be replaced by fireplaces with a wooden mantel coupled with a cast iron back panel.
Typically these cast iron back panels would include a 'slider' on each side, into which a set of decorative ceramic tiles could be inserted. This increased the natural aesthetics of the cast iron and allowed standard designs to be personalised by the builder.
The local blacksmiths as part of their general work originally worked dog grates, which in the 20th Century are typically constructed of cast iron.
1. GEORGIAN FIREPLACES
The Georgian era spanned the years 1714 to 1820, although the latter period is more correctly called Regency.
It was during this time that many of today's stately homes were being built or remodelled
the history of the fireplace now falls conveniently into two halves. Immense, ornate designs characterised the earlier part, while the latter half saw mantelpieces with a more subtle, classical influence.
In middle class households designs were altogether simpler - faux imitations of marble or expensive hardwoods replaced the real thing. More reserved, and cheaper, fireplaces would also be seen in the less important rooms of stately homes indicating that the pockets of even the richest landowners were not limitless! These designs did not percolate down at all to the farmers and yeomen who made up the majority of house owners. Their fireplaces were often the inglenook designs with large wooden lintel that we see in thatched cottages today.
2. REGENCY FIREPLACES
Regency period 1811 -1820
Marble although its cost tended to limit its use to the main, public rooms. Other 'reception' and 'retiring' might have fireplaces in faux marble, manufactured in wood or toughened plaster and painted, by highly skilled but low paid artisans, to resemble marble.
Regency influence has remained popular to this day. Many town houses from this era survive in London. Where Regency houses had been stripped of their original fireplaces by subsequent generations keen to modernise their homes, modern reproductions have been used to fill the gaps and recreate at least some of the splendour of that period.
3. VICTORIAN FIREPLACES
Victoria 1837 – 1901
That it is impossible to regard her reign as a single period. In the early years, up to Albert's death in the 1860s designs were still influenced by the classical themes so obvious in Regency design. However, as the age progressed other movements began to influence design with the two main designs schools being Arts and Crafts & Art Nouveau
4. TURN OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
the dawning of the twentieth century also saw a variety of different stylistic influences on the fireplace in a way that no other century had experienced. The heavy, gothic style that so typified the middle of the Victorian era was still being produced in vast numbers. But present and popular with the cognoscenti was the powerful Art Nouveau look, which had taken the country by storm, following the Paris Exhibition of 1881.
The 1920s looked for a different approach that combined industry with art. After the First World War, revival was still the name of the game for the middle classes who wanted their suburban houses gentrified with mock Tudor beams and fireplaces. However, the rich and the artistic longed for designs that reflected the twin ethos of work and leisure.
Art Deco filled this void and was born at the 1925 Paris. Art Deco design was almost immediately translated into a wealth of designs, which used traditional fireplace materials, but in a more spectacular, avant-garde way. Simple understated lines were set off by the use of reflective chrome, lacquered wood or tiles to give a modern feeling, which shouted 'Modern!' without being too ornate.
Like many of the other trends, Art Deco tended to be the preserve of the well off. The newly enriched suburban middle classes were more likely to have a simple tiled fireplace, normally in green beige or buff... Many 1930s tiled fireplaces also featured a wooden surround or mantelshelf in English oak.
In the shires the fire surround was more likely to be in a local material, brick in the South of England, stone in the North and tiles around Stoke on Trent. Designs in these areas were not so influenced by decorative trends. Functional features such as bread ovens and hooks for hanging cooking pots lingered on in full or partial use within the country cottage well into the 1930s and 40s.
World War II witnessed a complete halt in the house building programme as resources were funnelled into replacing and repairing bombed houses and in the late 1940s the push to re-house families saw a move away from conventional fireplaces in favour of the 'easy to install' electric fire. However as the UK became more prosperous during the 1950s local authorities and private house builders started to install tiled fireplaces again creating a regular demand