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Spaces in Which Fire & Ice Collide

Admittedly, I have a pretty limited knowledge about creating zen spaces or the fine art of feng shui. What I’ve noticed over the years, however, is that some very impactful spaces incorporate seemingly opposing elements of nature with reckless abandon…and with great success. Take fire and ice, for example. Hot and cold, warm and cool. However you think of the terms, the fact remains that these opposites do, indeed, attract. Let’s examine a few spaces where fire and ice come together to create a beautiful, serene, and balanced space.

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This updated kitchen is chic and sleek…with just enough texture and natural elements thrown in to keep things grounded. The space uses rich, warm cherry cabinetry to infuse the area with warmth. Cool granite countertops (along with stainless steel appliances and glass-front cabinets) balance the warm wood and bring an aesthetic balance to an already functional space.

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Kitchens seem to be a prime space for natural elements to combine, perhaps because the function of the room itself revolves around elements of “fire” (stovetop, oven) and elements of “ice” (refrigerator, freezer). Whatever the reason, the rustic knotty cabinetry and firelight colors of the countertops definitely infuse warmth here. Greenish Viking appliances and cupboard backs bring in a critical element of ice. (Incidentally, the slate and brick backsplash here is called “Fire & Ice.”) I happen to love the irony of the fridge/freezer being paneled in warm wood, while the cooking elements bring out the cooler side of things.

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Sometimes, but not always, the “fire” element in a space will be carried out literally. This space represents one of those times. The low rectangular fireplace is the perfect architectural choice for this space in which low rectangular things abound; thus, its stylistic impact is greater than simply being a fireplace. “Ice” is represented in the the cool epoxy terrazzo floor, large glass windows, and modern slate fireplace surround. I love the careful blend of cool greys and warm woods throughout this earthy contemporary space.

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Color choices can be a literal translation of “fire and ice” as well as texture and material. This space is a prime example of color’s being the carry-through of nature. Pale cool aqua and mint green (the “ice” here) are colors used as the foundation on which the “fire” pops. The colors are similar but varied to prevent tiresome matchiness. Orangey-reds (representing the “fire” element, naturally) are used sparingly because they are the bolder color. Combined, the colors help to create a space that is both serene and invigorating.

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And, last but not least, fire and ice definitely collide in this ultra contemporary bathroom. Sienna wall tiles incorporate various shades of red, almost like the flickering of firelight, and the light reflecting off their metallic sheen only enhances the visual metaphor. Sea green tinted glass is the pop of icy color and texture in this bathroom, drawing the eye vertically and effectively dividing the space.

Picture sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

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Posted in How To, Tips, and Advice on February 11, 2013

About the author

Brittney Smart
Brittney is a wife, a mom of four young children, a writer and editor (B.S. degree in English/Technical Writing), and a lover of interior design. She thrives on finding inexpensive ways to DIY her own home into a stylish yet family-friendly space.

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