I consider my apartment to be something of a unicorn: I'm a New Yorker living in a rental with a fully functional fireplace. Yay! Only, I never use it. Why not? Firewood is pretty expensive in Manhattan, and when we needed a place to put our cable box and gaming systems, I begrudgingly agreed to use the cutout for our makeshift media center. Plus, it would be impossible to tell you when the chimney was last swept or the flue checked, so I'd be too nervous to use it anyway.
Of course, it would be nice to have a roaring fire this time of year, so I feel your pain, fireplace-free folks. Luckily, there are some things you can do to get your fire fix this winter.
1. Set up some decorative logs.
Before you can build a fire, you have to have logs — and logs can be pretty! Just skip that next step of, you know, actually lighting them on fire, and set up some pretty decorative logs. Put them in a non-working fireplace, a cute basket, or even piled into a built-in bookshelf. Look for them for free (in nature!) or buy them online.
2. Plug in an electric fireplace.
Electric fireplaces have come a long way. There are tons of options that aren't totally cheesy, way too ornate, or far too big. Don't believe me? Check out some of these cute ones.
3. Turn to Netflix.
If you're only using this video during Christmastime, you're not taking full advantage of your Netflix subscription! Play this gem of a video all winter long — and don't forget to turn the sound up.
Watch: Fireplace for Your Home at Netflix
4. Light some candles.
Duh! Light a cluster of candles and you basically have one very small fire. You can even take it a step further and go with a bunch of candles that smell as smoky and woodsy as possible. For your convenience, we've rounded up some that would fit the bill.