Fall is in the air and we are ready to changeover our Mantel and create a cozy Autumn feeling in our home! A few weeks ago we shared our 5 Step Formula to a Fresh Fall Mantel on Studio 5 with Brooke Walker and we wanted to make sure you have access to our video and our easy Formula as you create and decorate this Fall. See our video below!
Before I decorate my mantel I love to:
***Shop my home!***
What objects in my home feel like this new season? What is personal and would add a nice touch to our decor?
***Love it before I buy it!***
My shopping goal is to really love each piece of decor, clothing, furniture, etc. before I buy it! I won't just buy something because it's on sale! If it makes me excited 6 months after I purchased it - then I know I've made a good decision!
5 Easy Steps to a Fresh Fall Mantel
1. Choose an Anchor Piece or Pieces:
Don't get hung up on using 1 big piece or even centering your piece. You are starting your creation with items that will take up a larger section of your mantel and building onto it as you add additional objects. I like to use numerous large frames with art and photography as my anchor pieces. When you use numerous pieces as your anchor it's a bit easier to switch them up and more affordable. Buying 1 large mirror or piece of art can get expensive if you're wanting to change it each season! Other anchor ideas: A large mirror, a canvas print/saying, art, photography, and in some homes your TV will act as your anchor - build around it!
In our Fall Mantel we used framed photos of our family Ranch and my grandfather's cabin during the Fall season, (taken by my cousin, Colleen Kelly and my Aunt, Marcia Dow.) In our Halloween Mantel we used Framed Photos of my Ancestors as our anchor pieces.
2. Use Varying Heights
Allow some movement to your mantel by varying the heights of your objects. If every object has the same height, your mantel may feel a bit calculated and stagnant. Choose containers of different heights and cut your stems for the vases at differing heights. You can easily change the height of candles and candlesticks by placing them on a book or two. Use cake plates, mini cake plates or turn a bowl/cup upside down as a base! You're not shooting for perfect, you will know when something feels too aligned and needs some dimension.
You can see in our mantels the frames, vases, stems, candles, baskets, trays, pumpkins and banner are all at varying heights!
3. Add Natural ElementsWhether it's flowers, stems, pumpkins, a plant or natural wood trays - adding something living or once living brings your mantel to life! I love walking around my neighborhood to see what's in season - many times you can find a "living element" in your own yard or ask a neighbor for a few stems. This is an easy and affordable way to change your mantel for each season - maybe you don't change your anchor piece each season but you can always run to Trader Joe's for some seasonal stems!
4. Layer - Layer - Layer
If you want dimension - LAYER! When I say layer I mean both the action of layering objects and also layering your mantel with different types of textures and materials. This is one reason I like choosing numerous large frames as an Anchor so I can overlap the frames for added depth. Ask yourself how you can use numerous materials - glass vases and wooden trays. Metallic and matte frames. Canvas banners and glass paned frames. Wooden garlands and books. Such different materials with so much texture - yet they blend so well together. This is perhaps the most creative part of building your mantel - I could shuffle objects around and test textures together off and on for a few days- some work much better than others!
In our Fall Mantel we layered our frames and used so many fun materials together: Metallic & Matte Frames, Metallic Large Acorns on Wooden Trays, Glass Vases and Palm Baskets, Brass Candlesticks and a Amber Vintage Glass Compote.
Our Halloween Mantel has layered Frames both matte and shiny metallic, books and candlesticks, felt witch hats and a canvas banner, pumpkins and ceramic mini cake stands, and brass candlesticks and our Amber Vintage Glass Compote as well.
Yes, make your mantel personal! Any kind of design/styling is so much more fun to create, take in and learn about when it's personalized. Is your anchor piece somewhere you've visited or you want to visit? Do you have an antique from your grandparents you can add to the mantel - candlesticks, a dish, a frame, etc.? The more personal elements, the more fulfilling your mantel will be for you and your family! Don't get me wrong - if you find something exciting at your favorite shop and it is beautiful and has no connection to you - use it, mixing new and old makes your mantel truly unique!!
In our Fall Mantel our Anchor Pieces are gorgeous photos of our family ranch - a very special place I grew up visiting and now I take my own children to create incredible memories. My cousin Colleen Kelly took the horizontal photo and my Aunt Marcia Dow took the photo of my grandfather's cabin - a cabin built for him by his parents when he was a teenager. Can you imagine having your teenage boy live in the cabin out back? The brass candlesticks were my paternal grandmothers. These pieces make me smile every time I see the mantel!
My anchor pieces in my Halloween Mantel are photos of my ancestors. The group photo is the family that homesteaded our Family Ranch. The singular photos are my great grandparents - the Ranch was struggling and they came in and worked hard to save it - thank goodness! They're also the ones that built the cabin out back for their teenage son - my Grandpa James! I love teaching my kids about these ancestors as they adorn our mantel!
This may be my favorite personalized touch to our mantel. Last year in my son's preschool class they drew all sorts of Halloween characters and this is his 4 year old drawings of Halloween Ghosts! I treasure these precious pieces and I think framing it and placing it on the mantel makes both him and I very happy!
There you have it! 5 Easy Steps to a Fresh Fall Mantel!
1. Choose an Anchor Piece
2. Use Varying Heights
3. Add Natural Elements
4. Layer - Layer - Layer