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FashFood Home: Stylish fire pits add warmth, flair to back-yard entertaining

Stylish containers turn even an impromptu weenie roast into a special occasion

Herald-Leader Fashion writerSeptember 8, 2012 


    Using fire pits wisely

    Any time fire is involved, safety is a top priority. Here are some tips for keeping your fire pit safe.

    ■ Use portable fire pit outdoors only.

    ■ Locate away from overhanging roofs and trees.

    ■ Never place directly on wood deck.

    ■ Never leave fire unattended.

    ■ Have a container of water or hose handy.

    ■ Use natural products such as Fatwood sticks to start the fire, not chemicals such as lighter fluid, kerosene or gasoline.

    ■ Avoid using pressure-treated wood, which may contain toxins. Hickory and oak produce the least amount of smoke.

    ■ Use a spark guard.

    ■ Use safety gloves and tongs when removing the spark guard or adding logs.

    ■ Avoid using in high winds, which may scatter embers.

    ■ To extinguish, allow wood fire to burn itself out. Do not use water because extreme temperature changes can damage fire pits.


Just because summer is on the wane doesn't mean that outdoor entertaining is also ebbing. In Kentucky there's always the chance for several weeks of warm weather throughout the fall. With a few design tweaks, your patio or back yard can be ready for cozy get-togethers.

Tops on the wish list of many a homeowner looking to update a back yard is a fire pit, a container that burns wood logs, gas or gel for added outdoor ambience.

Whether surrounded by comfy seating or just used as an outdoor accent, a fire pit can be a gathering spot for toasting marshmallows or hotdogs or for party-goers searching for a toasty space.

Styles are as varied as the home. For a modern look, Design Within Reach offers the Geometric Firepit from John Paul Plauché of Plodes Studio, $1,195 to $1,675 at DWR.com. Handcrafted and available in carbon or Corten steel, it can be used with wood or charcoal. Even when not in use, its sculptural lines will serve as art for your yard.

Front Gate carries a variety of high-end fire pits, from a simple elevated copper bowl to fire tables surrounded by granite.

The company also sells decorative fire glass that can be used in addition to or in place of lava rocks for a flame with a special glow. Colors include clear and reflective blue or copper glass as well as red and black. Prices range from $45.50 to $140 for a 10-pound bag.

For something a little more casual, try a rustic pit from Mississippi-based At West End ($175 at Atwestend.com). Made of recycled metal, the bowl features a charming cutout design.

For flames on the go, a wood-burning pit on wheels means you can change around fire locations depending on your mood or the occasion. The Fire Sense model from Lowe's, $137.14, has a porcelain enamel bowl and lid plus a fire screen. Go to Lowes.com to order for in-store pickup.

Harriett Hendren: (859) 231-3324. Email: hhendren@herald-leader.com. Blog: fashfood.bloginky.com

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