Home Decorating Why This Works: How to Style a Bright Holiday Mantle

Why This Works: How to Style a Bright Holiday Mantle

Make A Merry Mantel: Rainbow hues and living greens are sure to spark joy this holiday season.

Ever look at a beautiful room and wonder how did they do that—and, more importantly, how can I do something similar at home? We break it down, using this bright holiday mantel as our guide:

Start with a palette touchstone
Your holiday decor doesn’t have to be the standard red and green. Instead, tweak the time-tested formula by taking cues from what’s already in your room. Here the abstract painting inspired a pink and green palette, which still nods to the usual holiday hues, as pink is just a tone off from the classic crimson.

Fill your hearth with a simple DIY
If your fireplace is faux or doesn’t get much use, painted birch logs are a playful way to fill in for a fire. Annie Selke’s senior stylist Melissa Lillie painted the cut ends of slender birch logs with bright acrylic paint – in pinks, corals and yellow – and stacked the logs so their cut ends faced out.

Go long on evergreens
A large, ornament-bedecked tree will always be the main holiday attraction, but adding little touches of evergreen throughout the home will make your house feel alive during the darkest winter month. This sprightly tree is a living specimen with a root ball; if you plan to purchase a live tree and plant it, just be sure to dig the hole in fall before the ground is frozen solid. The greens on top of the mantel are silver dollar eucalyptus, which has a subdued green color and dries beautifully.

Be playful with your candles
A rainbow of colorful taper candles displayed in simple candlesticks takes your holiday lighting from a supporting player to a leading role. Here a dozen different hues give a wide spectrum of color, but even just four or five different colors will lend your mantle a spirited vibe.

Sprinkle in tiny touches of sparkle
Metallic finishes and shiny surfaces are a holiday staple, so be sure to incorporate a few into your seasonal styling. Here, a strand of metallic metal balls add just a hint of shimmer to the scene.

Satisfy the eye with repeating shapes
This whimsical display has many eclectic elements, but it’s held together by moments of repetition and subtle symmetry. While the candles are all different colors, the candle holders are uniform and there are an even number placed on either side of the painting. The other styled elements like the felt ball garland, painted birch logs, ornament strand, and even the ottoman all repeat round shapes for a cohesive feeling.

Shop the look:

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For more inspiration, see:

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