Outdoor stone fireplaces are a great design element for your yard and will become a focus for any landscape or outdoor gathering. An outdoor fireplace and patio create a place for entertaining outdoors. An outside fireplace is simple to construct and can be enjoyed for years.
The definition of outside fireplace can include a more traditional fireplace or a permanent fire pit. Consider how you will be using your outdoor fireplace. Do you want an outdoor fireplace to provide warmth for chilly evenings? Or do you want to be able to cook outdoors? This will help you determine the shape your fireplace should take. The fireplace should be constructed of stone that can stand up to the heat of a fire. Limestone and granite are good choices. If cost is a concern, you might consider using a less expensive material, like breeze block for the interior of the fireplace and using a stone veneer on the exterior. If you have minimal construction or masonry skills, consider the advantages of purchasing a kit.
Once you have determined the type of fireplace you want to build, you will need plans. If you are experienced with building and masonry, you can design your own plans. If not, you may find your project more successful if you purchase plans. Alternately, you can purchase a kit to construct your outside fireplace. While purchased plans and kits are somewhat limiting in terms of design options, they are easier and less work especially if you are inexperienced with masonry. You can purchase "raw" or unshaped stone, or stones that have been shaped for ease of construction. Make sure all of the materials you purchase are suitable for use with a fireplace.
If you have purchased a kit, follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer. If you are constructing your own fire pit or fireplace, begin by preparing a level surface free from plant life. For a fire pit, dig the pit to the desired depth and shape, line with stone and stack stones around the perimeter to create a wall. For a more traditional fireplace, use the stone to construct a three-walled shape with an open front. Build a top that includes an opening for the flue. You can dry stack the stone or use an appropriate mortar. Before beginning any construction project, check your local building codes and regulations.