Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Steven and Chris Helped me Decorate my Summer Mantel

I was reading the June 2011 Style at Home magazine and saw this article by Steven and Chris where they outline step-by-step how to decorate your mantel.  It looked pretty foolproof so I thought I would give it a try.




Our mantel still had the pussy willows in beer bottles spring display that you can see here.   It really was time for a change.  


So here is what I did:




We already have a large engraving hung over our fireplace which I used as my starting off point. Steven and Chris used a large vertical mirror resting on the mantel, but our engraving is already hung several inches above the mantel so I went with it.




I had to pinch the woodblock print of the woman fly-fishing from the front hall.   It not only had the golds and blacks that went with the engraving, but it seemed sort of summery with the fishing.   






I'm not sure if the Mason jars have movement or not, but I liked the summery colours so I used them.  I also had them in two different heights which was good so that I could get the all important triangle shape.






I had a much harder time decorating the right side of the mantel than the left.  I decided to try the nautical knots that I won in a giveaway from Suzanne at Meridian Road last year.  I really like their texture and symmetry and I love how much they help evoke the summer mood.






I tried several versions of tall wispy branches, but they all just looked strange in front of the engraving so I finally went with a tall glass cylinder candle holder (which you can see in the photo above).  It's tall enough to overlap with the frame of the etching which helps bridge the gap between the mantel and the etching.






When step 6 called for boxes, I immediately thought of the beautiful box that Malcolm and Christie gave us for our 30th anniversary.  The box needed a little height so I tried stacking numerous things on top of it which I will show you in the photos at the end of the post.  


I also added an additional item under the etching as it seemed a little bare on the mantel since the etching is hanging rather than leaning.  I tried several things in that spot as well.




So here's a sketch of Steven and Chris's final version:




And here are some photos of variations that I went through (trying out different things on the box and under the etching):










Any one of these versions call out to you as the clear winner?  I'm really not sure which one I like best, although the last version is the one I left.  




I have to say it was a useful exercise.  It helped me decorate the mantel with more confidence and made me try items that I wouldn't have ordinarily put together.  


So thanks Steven and Chris!  Anyone else want to give it a try?

Linked to Wow Us Wednesdays at Savvy Southern Style
Good Life at A Beach Cottage
Swing Into Spring at DIY by Design
Home May'd Summer Mantel Party at The Lettered Cottage
Magazine Copy Cat Challenge at Debbiedoo's Blogging and Blabbing

30 comments:

  1. Oh this cracks me up. I just did my mantel and did it completely backwards from what they recommend. I love it but I keep thinking something's just not right and now I think I know what it is! I may redo it and then do another post linking to this one of yours! By the way, I like the 4th picture best.

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  2. I like the version with the bird and the blue and white dish. It looks really great. That is a helpful article!

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  3. Hey Grace! I have a huge TV over my mantel so this won't work for me...but I love what you came up with. Personally I thought the little white bird was lovely. Other than that I like them all! Very enjoyable post. Have a good rest of the week...~Ann

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  4. i like the last one, maybe add the bird over there by the vases?! i love guides like this, sooo helpful! xox

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  5. I think Steven & Chris are spot on! I like the little blue & white bowl instead of the painted rock, and I love the bird...but then I'm a sucker for birds. They all look great, though!

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  6. i like this. i think i will try it soon. great post.

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  7. This is a really great tutorial you found and the finished mantel looks superb!

    Happy BC Good Life Wednesday :O)

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  8. Very nicely done, and thanks for their tips! My fav is the version with the white bird and the blue and white bowl, I like the various shades of blue and the pops of white! They are all pretty though.

    Kat :)

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  9. Thanks for visiting my blog and letting me know I guessed right on my mantel. I am pretty limited with the space on it width wise so glad I did something right.

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  10. They look lovely. Great tips!
    Liz

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  11. I like the last one the best, too. Something about having 3 spots of blue glass, I guess. :)
    A great article~thanks for sharing!

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  12. I just can't believe you posted this! I do not know how to decorate my mantel - it's been bothering me forever. I'm going to try this - yours looks so beautiful!

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  13. Well done! I like how you carried the blues across and the overlapping picture is a great idea.

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  14. Grace, your mantel looks *nice* What a cool tutorial. Thanks for sharing it with us!

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  15. That article caught my eye too! Great tips from Steven and Chris. I like the second last arrangement. The pops of white with the bird and bowl help relate the things on the mantle to the mantle itself.

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  16. I love this post Grace! You did an amazing job and I love the mantle scape you created! You must be so busy with your son's upcoming wedding.Will you be having any guests staying with you? Talk soon! Angie xo

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  17. I like #1 best. I think the rock with the box (#4)is a bit heavy on the one side. I can't wait to get home and use your tutorial to help me see my mantel anew.

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  18. Nice job! I will have to follow that advice...my mantel needs some freshening up!

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  19. Your mantle is lovely. Love the last one with the blue jars and glass. Thanks for dropping by Beach Cottage Good Life Wednesdays and joining the party.

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  20. Hi, I hopped over from "Three Ring Cottage". She posted about your mantel and the tips for arranging one's mantel. I love what you did. Your mantel looks great. So neat to have a formula to work with. I am bookmarking this post. Thank you for sharing what you learned With Steven and Chris.
    I am your newest follower. Please come over and visit with me.
    Hugs, Ginger

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  21. That's really great advice from them and you incorporated it so well! Good job. I could totally see some branches or something in that vase, but it's probably just the picture from the magazine putting that in my head.

    Love what you've done!

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  22. This is fantastic actually. I like the first and the last one. The blue is what I really like. You did great and I thank you for sharing. I really struggle with my mantel..always did, always will.

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  23. Such a great tutorial, Thanks, I always have trouble with my mantle trying to anchor it and give it flow at the same time. I like this step by step. Yours turned out great.

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  24. You did a fabulous copy here..Your mantel looks like a million dollars.
    xo bj

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  25. Your mantle is lovely. Love the woman fishing print. The knots are perfect on the mantle. ~Michelle

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  26. Steven and Chris would be proud of you!..your copy cat is fantastic! Great step-by-step I might could even do this.Thanks!..
    I'm visiting from Debbiedoos!..wasn't this copy cat FUN!!!
    ~Jo
    LazyonLoblolly

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  27. Wish i had that magazine...I like the one with the blue glass on that gorgeous box! Really liked your post today!

    Rondell

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  28. Good job on your mantel! I like bringing the blue across the mantel with those glass pieces. I came over from Debbiedoos Fun challenge! hugs, Linda

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  29. I like the advice you gave....I also like the picture with the bird in it. Trish

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