Gather Round the Fire Pit

Continue your outdoor fun into the evening hours by adding firelight to your open-air space.

Written by Julie Kuczynski

Continue your outdoor fun into the evening hours by adding firelight to your open-air space.

Cabin days can sometimes play out with everyone going in their own direction, whether that be sunning on the beach, fishing on the water, hiking in the woods, or cozying up with a good read. One thing that I have found in my years of cabin experience is that as the day comes to a close, everyone comes together again. Where? Around the fire. There’s something special about socializing with family and friends while roasting marshmallows and watching embers burn. Many outdoor fire pit and fireplace options are available, whether you’re keeping it simple or going all out. Take a look at these outdoor living space designs to see what inspires you.

Boulder beauty

This fire pit is made up of large boulders that accent the natural beauty of the surrounding setting. The rocks also block the wind and keep the heat in close. The addition of Adirondack chairs and large stone walkway slabs follow with the rustic theme. cabin firepit fireplace bonfire boulders rocks Design: Design Associates of Bozeman, Mont., Photo by Roger Wade Studio; courtesy Blue Ribbon Builders, Design Associates

Group gathering

This 42-inch square fire pit, built by Linthicum builders, is elevated 18 inches above a heated stone terrace and constructed of native basalt stone. The fire ring contains a 30-inch multi-burner system. The whole set-up here is designed around “the more, the merrier” concept. Everyone can enjoy the approaching evening in comfort and in company. modern firepit fireplace bonfire outdoor Design: Ryan Group Architects, Photo courtesy Ethan Rohloff Photography

Porch place

Keep the warmth close to the cabin by including a fireplace on the back porch. Wicker furniture with soft pillows adds to an inviting respite. Not warm enough? Add a patio heater to your space. To make the porch feel open, include thin balusters and add a few plants. The aged-stone look of this fireplace invites you to throw on a pot of stew and snuggle up with Rover. outdoor fireplace covered porch outdoor seating deck patio Design/Image: Soorikian Architecture,

cabin firepit fireplace bonfire wood rustic mountainsSimplicity

If you are of the minimalist mindset, take everything away aside from a few wood benches with carved seats and a fire pit. Surround the pit with sand if you are near a grassy or wooded area. (The last thing you want to do is stress about starting your cabin yard on fire!) Design: Jessica Helgerson Interior Design, Photo by Lincoln Barbour

Outdoor room

Creating a room to enjoy your outdoor fireplace can make a nice getaway separate from the indoors, but keep the walls open. This wood-burning design uses a grate to hold the wood while it burns and includes two side compartments to store firewood for future use. That way, you can spend more time sipping wine and less time retrieving the right piece of timber to add to the flames. cabin firepit fireplace bonfire boulders firewood covered patio Design/Image: Paradise Restored Landscaping & Exterior Design,

Rolling rapids

Sometimes, even better than the sound of the fire crackling, is the sound of water lapping against a dock or, in this case, rushing past over rocks and logs down a river. Put the two beautiful sounds together with a design like this. A bear-in-a-log carving and Adirondack chairs add a personal touch. cabin firepit fireplace bonfire boulders rocks adirondack chair creekside Design/Image: Loretta Simpson

Julie Kuczynski has been known to call bonfires “bond fires.” (And her colleagues would never dream of teasing her about that.)