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Mantel Seasonal Decor: Creating the Perfect Scene

by Jake Park 

As we walk open-armed in the season of renewal, spring brings about a fresh start to each year. From the budding and blooming of flowers to longer warm days, spring is very much about change. Whether you’ve decided to spring clean your entire home or just update the decor to match the season, your mantel seasonal decor should be a big piece of your rejuvenation activities. Your mantel—no matter the location in your home—is the main focal point of the room where it hangs. Outfitting your mantel with decor to match a seasonal decorative aesthetic is important to the overall flow of your home. So get creative with what you choose to display and adorn your mantel with artwork, trinkets, photos and elements that inspire you.

Photo by Jessica Johnston

The mantel itself is most important

If you have a mantel now or are in the market to find the perfect one for your home, its design is everything. Individuality should be the frontrunner in the design of your space. The most important elements to decide on when it comes to a new mantel are style and material. Homeowners have various styles to choose from. Some of the most popular styles include:

  • Rustic
  • Colonial
  • Victorian
  • Modern
  • Classical

First decide on what best fits your vibe and go with that theme. Remember, because a mantel will be the focal point of your room, the entire aesthetic of your space should match its style. 

When considering the material options for mantelpieces, wood is by far the most common choice. From oak to reclaimed barn wood, the timber and staining options are plenty. Outside of wood options, you can choose from materials like metal, granite and marble. 

Create a standard design to work with

Once you decide on your mantel style and material, your mantel seasonal decor should pull directly from that design aesthetic. Whether you’ve opted for a rustic feel or modern with clean lines, your design elements should match appropriately. When decorating your mantel, first consider pieces that can be used all year long. You want to keep a few staple pieces on your mantel that remain timeless. These pieces will act as both the anchor and backdrop for your seasonal decor additions. 

Some of our favorite pieces for any decor style include:

  • Candles
  • Framed photos
  • Vases with fresh (or faux) flowers
  • Mirror
  • Books
  • Clock
  • Plants 

Add in mantel seasonal decor that highlight the season

Now comes the fun part: adding seasonal decor elements to your reclaimed wood mantel that exude the beauty of each season and holiday. There may be occasions when you decide only to add a piece or two to your mantel, while others require a full revamp (think Valentine’s Day or Christmas). You want your decor to be seasonally appropriate without feeling crowded or over the top. Choose pieces that complement your current décor, add depth to your mantel, and create an eye-catching centerpiece the entire year.

Here are some of our favorite seasonal mantel decor ideas for each season:

Spring

  • Flowers in pastel-colored vases
  • Faux lavender garland
  • Delicate Easter pieces (glass white rabbits, muted pastel eggs)
  • Mason jars
  • A small wreath with seasonal faux flowers
  • Candle holders
  • A framed springtime quote or photo
mantel decor for spring
Photo courtesy HomeIdeas.co

Summer

  • Beach themed items (shells, starfish, sand dollars)
  • Vases in blues, turquoise and light yellows
  • 4th of July or Americana decor
  • Sailboat figure
  • Glass lantern
mantel decor for summer
Photo courtesy MyBlessedLife

Fall:

  • Glass vases filled with gourds
  • Framed photos from Halloween or Thanksgiving memories
  • White pumpkins
  • Black metal lanterns
  • Tasteful home decor with phrases like “Give Thanks” or “Gather”
mantel decor for autumn
Photo by Flair Flickers

Winter:

  • Holly garland
  • Snow decorations
  • Classic Christmas trinkets
  • Red and white candles
  • Miniature Christmas tree
  • Menorah
  • Poinsettia plant
mantel decor for winter
Photo by Jonathan Beckman

Outfitting a mantel should be an extension of your overall design aesthetic. Pick pieces that are functional and beautiful without feeling overwhelming to your guests. Anchor pieces should act as a way to keep a standard design while being used as a strong backdrop for your seasonal decor pieces as you change them out throughout the year. Choose pieces that tell a story and speak to your overall originality and your mantel will exude both timelessness and seasonal appeal. 

Jake Park
I am a timber expert and serial woodworker dedicated to helping you get educated about the finest woods and materials in the world. Join in my journey on the Modern Timber Craft blog.

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