The fireplace mantel is a great place to add some Christmas cheer. Here are some decorating ideas that will give your mantel an updated traditional look worthy of any home magazine.
1. Choose one major color, one accent metallic (gold or silver), and one neutral. This will unite all the objects you place, preventing the mantel from looking cluttered.
Our color scheme was green, silver, and winter white. Other good colors are red, blue, and gold. You can also use the metallic or white as a major color and red, blue, or green as accents.
2. Scour your home for containers that match your color scheme. The material you choose doesn't matter as much as the color, but try to maintain one style. You will want to choose containers that have varying heights and shapes for visual interest. Arrange them on your mantel.
We selected pieces from my mother's collection of green depression glass. If you want this look less expensively, you can often find good imitations at dollar stores and department stores like Target. This stemmed bowl was purchased at a dollar store, and it's hard to tell even next to all the authentic depression glass. Depression glass was also made in rose, cobalt blue, amber, iridescent, and opaque white.
3. Fill some of the containers with small ornaments in your accent color. You can also use decorative balls, crystals, vase gems, beach glass, etc. Once again, a dollar store is a great place to look. Craft stores and department stores will also carry these items.
4. Fill the spaces around the containers with Christmas items - snowmen, Santas, ornaments that stand, whatever you like. Stay within your color scheme, and make sure you include tall items. Taper candles or tall pillar candles are a great, inexpensive way to add height to your arrangement.
5. Finish off the mantel by hanging a wreath and garland, real or artificial, or by hanging your Christmas stockings. You can also add a string of Christmas lights or other small LED lights to brighten up the decorations in the evenings.
Then all that's left to do is to enjoy your beautiful mantel.