Home decorating ideas: Create a mantel masterpiece

Frequently the focal point of a room, the mantel offers endless design possibilities. Whether you adorn yours with flowers, books, framed pictures or other objects d’art, you can change the look of your room easily and effectively by updating your mantel arrangement. So clear away those dusty Christmas cards. It’s a new year, and that means, a new look!

When decorating a mantel, you need not look further than your own home for inspiring home decorating ideas. That framed picture you’ve been meaning to hang but couldn’t find the right place? Lean it against the wall and surround it with candles. Mantelpieces look best when you mix height and texture in an interesting way. It’s all about the composition.

Avoid the mistake of valuing symmetry above all other aspects of design. Perfectly centered mantel décor works great for some design looks, but there are a lot of great off-center looks as well. For example, you can create interest with a slightly off-center collection of picture frames. Or put a few antiquarian books together with bookends on one end and a collection of candles of different heights on the other with a clock in the middle. The possibilities are literally endless!

Here we have a pair of whimsical and unique owl bookends from Barnes and Noble framing the center of the mantelpiece. The white bookends tie in with the white paint of the mantel, while the books bring subtle shades of color.  On the left side a stained glass picture leans against the mirror and a clear bottle adds subtle visual interest. On the right [not shown] a houseplant pairs nicely with a candle and another framed piece of art.

Re-decorating your mantel can dramatically change the look and feel of your room for little to no cost. Many of us have fun decorating items laying around the house that can be repurposed in some way. When it comes to home decorating ideas for your mantel, see what you have first before you go out and buy new pieces.

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