Fireplaces are usually the focal point of the living room and are always beautiful regardless of the surrounding settings. The fireplace mantel, because of that, also becomes the heart of attention. A nicely and stylishly decorated mantel will enhance the charm and coziness of any living room. This article will show you how to decorate a fireplace mantel with these 10 stylish yet easy and budget-friendly ideas.

Tips and principles for decorating fireplace mantels are summarized in the end of the article.

#1 – Decorate with photos

how to decorate a fireplace mantel frames

Photos and paintings are traditional mantel decor


#2 – Let the holiday spirit shine through

Change your mantel decor around the year to embrace each holiday. Fill the heart mantel with Christmas decorations, Easter grass and eggs or Halloween pumpkin and fall foliage. Being the focal point of the room, the mantel is the easiest and most effective place to display your holiday spirit.

how to decorate a fireplace mantel christmas pine cone

Pinecones add a natural vibe to your Christmas decor


#3 – Candles

One of the cheapest and easiest ways to decorate your mantle is to use candles. You can opt for low or high candles or mix them up in varying heights. Candles are also not picky when pairing with other decorations so you can freely mix them up with any other decorating elements.

how to decorate a fireplace mantel candles

Candles on mantel


#4 – Decorate with clocks

A beautifully chosen clock is an invaluable decorative item. I love antique French or Swedish clocks especially as they always beautify other surrounding decorations and add charm and character to your fireplace mantel.

how to decorate a fireplace mantel old clock

Decorate mantel with clock


#5 – Dried flowers and leaves

how to decorate a fireplace mantel dried leaves flowers

Fox Hollow’s mantel


#6 – Decorative vases in the same or harmonizing hues

how to decorate a fireplace mantel colored vases simple

Simple mantel decor with vases


#7 – Big dramatic mirror

An eye catchy mirror does not only add beautiful reflection to the room but also go with most other decorations.

how to decorate a fireplace mantel mirror

Dramatic mirror


#8 – A book display

how to decorate a fireplace mantel books globe

Books and globe decor


#9 – Theme specific

If you have a specific theme that your whole room is following, don’t forget to count the mantel in. The picture below is an example of a beautifully decorated beach themed mantel.

how to decorate a fireplace mantel beach themed

Beach themed mantel


#10 – Frames and letters

how to decorate a fireplace mantel frames letters

Frames and letters


Principles to remember when decorating a fireplace mantel:

Balance is the key. You don’t have to decorate the heart mantel with two exact sets of decorations, or the decorations have to be exactly symmetrical. However there should be a balance in the arrangement. For example if one side of the mantel is decorated with smaller items then a bigger piece on the other side would balance out the whole look.

Don’t clutter the mantel. No mess is beautiful. You might want to show off your whole vase collection for the world to see, but there are only so many that your mantel can take. Too many items will make it look too crowded and messy. Sometimes it is the case of “less is more”.

Follow the theme of the room: your mantel decoration should be in harmony with the rest of the room. So if your room has a contemporary style, the mantel decoration should also reflect the same theme.

– To make the fireplace mantel fresh and interesting the whole year, you can put some evergreen pieces and some more flexible (and less expensive) pieces that you can alter every now and then for an updated look.

Add unexpected elements: An easy way to spice up your mantel decoration is to add a bit unexpected object to your usual elements. For example if traditional mantle decors are a big painting and 2 long candles, a vintage globe or/and an antique heirloom will make the whole look more fun and personalized.

Vary the heights: to create an interesting and eclectic look for your mantel decoration, objects do not have to be of the same heights. Their heights can vary a bit for a more random look. In this way flowers and smaller objects fit well together, especially in layering as flowers create a beautiful background for any other decorative elements.

Related posts: