I explored the options of stone slab fireplace surrounds previously, so here are some fireplace design ideas using brick, tile and slab. Whether you've got an existing traditional wood and brick fireplace surround and you're looking for a change - or designing one from scratch, there are some ideas in here for you.
So many homes have a traditional natural wood fireplace mantle and red brick surround and hearth. Don't feel like you're tied to that forever. Just go for it and paint it all white - brick and all. It may take some convincing of a spouse or family member, but everyone I know who has gone for it never looked back with regret. Painting the brick white can brighten and freshen a room and give you more options for paint and fabric colors. Of course, this isn't for everyone's taste. Some people love natural wood, an it may be more appropriate to their home.
Run the stone tile to the ceiling to create drama and accentuate the vertical. Brown stone is always a great way to de-emphasize the black that is a trademark of gas fireplaces.