Picture this: you're warming your hands, roasting a marshmallow, and enjoying your loved ones' company, all around a cozy backyard fire pit. It's the embodiment of fall. (Though, except for maybe the depths of winter, there's really no bad time of year for a fire pit.) Hell, we even love when our clothes smell like a campfire the next day.
If you're considering adding a fire element in your own backyard, take notes on the brilliant fire pit ideas below, from the various shapes and materials to aesthetics and furniture arrangements. Some are weekend DIY projects; others are jobs strictly for professionals. Either route you go, you'll add invaluable quality entertaining space to your backyard. Once you get it installed, can we come over?
Create an Enviable Entertainment Space
With a backyard like this, you'd be sure to be the most popular house on the block. Creative Environments created this fire pit out of CMU block, a stucco paint finish, and a travertine cap on top. Chairs in each corner add symmetry, though the portability of them is key.
Can't you imagine it? Some friends and family are playing bocce, others are enjoying conversation over a fire, and then, since the location is your own backyard, you can repeat that scenario any night of the week.
Think Outside the Fire Pit Box
"This fire pit is an elevated take on the classic fire pit design," Joe Raboine, Director of Residential Hardscapes at Belgard, says. With hardscapes, you have flexibility to create a variety of shapes, like this square chiseled stone design.
To soften the look and help the fire pit coordinate with the surrounding landscaping, Raboine recommends adding pops of color and foliage. The built-in seating surrounding the fire pit allows for plenty of friends to gather around.
Mix 'N' Match Furniture
A loveseat here, two chairs there, and a few side tables in between. Add on some outdoor pillows in patterns that pop, and you have a perfect recipe for fire pit furniture. That's what Studio Ten 25 did here, and it created a comfortable, flexible fire pit situation for occasions of all kinds.
Opt for a Portable Fire Pit
"There is nothing cozier and reminiscent of country living than a wood burning fire pit and some great outdoor chairs," Mimi Meacham of Marian Louise Designs says. Meacham loves the idea of a fire pit set up that is portable, so you can move it around your backyard as needed, or rearrange the seating depending on how many guests are joining and which way the wind is blowing.
"It's full of nostalgia but also adds a lot of function in an easy and affordable way," Meacham says.
A Long Fire Pit Allows for Easy Conversation
Hello dream backyard! Pool? Check. Bar? Check. Dining area? Check. A long, thin fire pit, allowing four or six people to gather around comfortably? Check. Creative Environments created this brick fire pit, painted white with a travertine cap, so conversation can easily flow across it.
Employ an Outdoor Fireplace to Further Define Your Space
If you're veering towards an outdoor fireplace, complete with a furniture set, instead of a traditional fire pit, Rebecca Johnston of R.Johnston Interiors supports your decision. "Outdoor fireplaces adds a lot more gravitas to the outdoor landscape, can help anchor a space, and further define it," she says.
When choosing the look of the fireplace, work with natural materials and finishes that you would see outdoors, such as stone. "They make for a beautiful place to gather and enjoy the outdoors," Johnston says.
Prioritize the View
A fire pit for two: what could be more romantic? Zack Stratton of Stratton & Brätt Landscaping had his work cut out for him with this fire pit though, which was designed to "hang" over the edge of the valley.
If you're interested in a similar look, bring in a professional who can get creative with excavation techniques to capture that intimate feeling while highlighting the view.
A Gas Fire Table Is the Easy Way to Go
We just found your next vacation: this rentable A-frame cabin in Lake Ariel, Pennsylvania, complete with a gas fire table on the spacious porch. There's a bench to cozy up on and café lights for added ambiance. Best yet, since it gas, there's no clean up or worrying that you put it out all the way.
Cook with Smokeless Technology
If you're planning on grilling over your fire pit, consider one of Breeo's slick designs. They've created the first smokeless fire pit in the world—don't ask us how—making for even-as-can-be cooking. Its stainless steel design is built to last in the elements for decades and can be fully customized with different powder coated colors for the outside ring and decorative glass. Add a few benches and a hammock, and you have the makings for a top-notch backyard hang.
Recreate a Living Room Outside
An oversized sectional couch placed in front of a fireplace is usually spotted in a comfy, cozy living room, but how about taking that situation outside? This extravagant fireplace setting, designed by R.Johnston Interiors, is the ultimate fireplace goals, with seating you can kick your feet up on and a roof that spares you from any summer rainstorms.
This fire pit, constructed from Belgard’s Weston Stone Fire Pit Kit, is as easy as a DIY fire pit gets. The kit is available at Lowe’s retail stores and includes all the materials and instructions you'll need to assemble it yourself.
"The circular fire pit is one of the most popular designs and perfect for a more casual outdoor living area," Raboine says. Here, the fire pit is installed on the paver walkway, along with a bench, but it can be installed on leveled ground either DIY-style or with the help of a professional.
Take Advantage of a View
Why choose between a fire pit and a hot tub when you can have both? This fire pit is a cozy spot for two, and next to the hot tub, so you can take advantage of both spaces when you have company over or if it's just the two of you. "It's perfect for a romantic evening or impressing company." Stratton says.
Consider a Fire Table
For a more formal outdoor gathering area, opt for an elegant, upscale fire table. "The fire table is a more modern take on the fire pit with its linear design, giving the overall aesthetic a bit more of an edge," Raboine says.
It’s constructed from Belgard’s BelAir Wall® product, featuring the look of cut slate with lasting strength. This specific design concept can be applied for anyone looking for a more formal outdoor gathering area.
Leave this type of design to the professionals though. Rabione recommends that projects of this size and scale be completed by a professional contractor.
Create a Backyard Oasis
To keep your backyard bonfire oasis casual, stick to beautiful basics. This DIY fire pit is outfitted with a semi-circle of Adirondack chairs and sweet lanterns in between, arranged by Maggie Griffin Design. Add in a fire and good company, and that's all you need.
Create a Wooded Wonderland
With seven children, Laura Cuthbertson of Wild Heron Designs needed a rather large area to fit her whole family around the fire, still leaving room for the little ones to run around.
"I love the dreaminess of lights strung in the trees so we found a natural spot within in the landscaping of our backyard and went to work arranging stones to create our little backyard oasis," she says.