This article is from the Baby Proofing FAQ, by Sandra Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org with numerous contributions by others.
From: email@example.com (Lynette Atwood)
I have the same problem at home. For our first child we had to cut a
large cardboard box (I believe it was a windshield box) and tape it
around the hearth. It looked tacky as hell but saved our little
monster's head. With this new baby (9 months old) we planned ahead.
We had my brother-in-law (who works for a plexiglass manufacturing
company) make a shield which goes around the three sides of the hearth
and is about 24 inches high. All corners are rounded off and the top
has a small (4 inch) shelf which faces in towards the fireplace to
prevent cuts. The plexiglass doesn't distract from the rest of the