Sunday, December 9, 2012

Santa's Back on the Mantel

You know I like to change my mantel for the holidays and every year I try to make it a bit different, just using everyday objects around my house.
But this year, there's one element from last year's mantel that I couldn't leave out:

You might recall that Jason made me this Pottery Barn knock off last year and I fell in love with it.
So he's made his way up there again this year, but all of the other elements have changed.  I tried to use objects around my house and I was trying to create a mantel with a vintage feel.
Here's what I came up with:
Once again, I used an old window for the backdrop. 
You'll see a couple of the objects I picked up at the Salvation Army haul.
My little grapevine reindeer got a makeover with a red ribbon around is neck.

I placed a white pitcher in an old soda crate, filled the pitcher with branches that I spray painted red and filled the box with some pine branches.  I added a few pine cones alongside the box.
I poured some Epsom salt into some old ball jars, added a candle and attached some fake holly to the jars.    In case you're wondering, I got the fake holly from the poinsettia bouquet I shared with you in my Salvation Army haul video.  If you missed it, you can watch it here. I still have a lot of it left so I can embellish my gifts this year.

Speaking of gifts, I wrapped a couple in simple brown paper packaging that I picked up from the dollar store.  I tied ribbon on one and twine on the other and added little embellishments from a big box I have (mostly from the Salvation Army or from gifts I receive each year).  I haven't made the tags yet, but these are real gifts.  I'm not one for "faking" gifts for decorating. 
I just don't like the thought of wasting the boxes or the wrapping paper so I use real gifts, for real people in my decorating.  The challenge is not to forget to give them to the recipients!
Once the gifts were wrapped, I stacked them on top of an old Coca-Cola box.

I also filled a big vintage egg basket with pine cones and placed it on the floor.  The Christmas ball tree sits on an old wash bucket.  I debated keeping the Christmas ball tree in the display because it is more modern, but it lights up and Noah loves to look at it, so I kept it.

Finally, our stockings are usually a pewter blue color, but they are very shimmery and sparkly and I just didn't feel like they matched this year's mantel, so I set off to purchase some burlap stockings.
I was shocked by the prices! I couldn't find one less than $20!  So I tried my hand at sewing once again and I guess I did okay because they at least LOOK like stockings.
I got my material at JoAnn Fabric and I spent less than $15 for all four stockings.

They were a bit plain, so I added some small wooden ornaments that my mom gave me from when I was a kid.  I like the little detail and they gave the stockings more of a whimsical feel.
Each stocking has a unique wooden ornament.

Finally, on the left side on the floor, there is a little gold tree sitting on top of an old bucket.  I also included a little copper pot that I filled with evergreens and tied a red ribbon on the front.


The Lettered Cottage



  1. Very Pretty! I've contemplated making my own stockings too. I love yours though!

  2. You did a wonderful job. Your mantel is beautiful!

  3. Stephenie,
    Your mantel is the epitome of an old fashion, down home Christmas with a clean, crisp, simple feel! I love it. I too, use actual gifts to decorate. I have no doubt this will be featured next year on HGTV's site!
    Your Friend,
    PS I received my Santa and am beyond THRILLED! Will be featuring it and your Etsy shop in an upcoming post. {Special thanks to your resident artist, Jason!}

  4. also decorate with the awesome chairs !!! Believe me! They are good.

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