Deck the mantel

by Karla Mikkelson

Decorated mantelThink fresh and different. This year, try some new concepts for an old mantel:

• Set narrow trees, nutcrackers and other decor atop antique books or other interesting textures to create various heights. Layer one or more empty ornate frames beside or behind items.

• Add reflective ornaments strung from shimmering ribbons or decorative chain.

• Go natural.

Try pinecones, berries and holly. Add red barberry twigs snipped from an outdoor bush.

• Keep it simple. Use wire brush trees and metal stars.

• Find items that catch the light. Try candles, beads, and shimmering strands of pearls.

• Show off collections. Include your favorite rocks, seashells,
driftwood and found objects from your travels.

Don’t have a mantel?

Deck the top of a shelving unit, entertainment center, sofa table, or china hutch.

Tip: Tiny nails or staple gun will be more durable than tape. If you are going to use tape, go with packing tape, or secure with a push-pin beneath the tape to keep them extra secure.

Always think safety. If your fireplace is wood burning, never hang flammables in front of it.

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