Let me just start by saying that I am not by any stretch of the imagination an interior designer. If you are feeling the need for change, but are at all hesitant about how to decorate your mantle for fall, this is the place for you. If you are a practiced hand, well, just be gentle, eh?
I try to change out our mantel once per season, with spring sort of blending into summer, fall blending into winter, and one more time at Christmas. That is what feels manageable to me. Here is what our Fall mantle looks like this year.
To my mind there are two parts to decorating a space. This is especially true of areas that tend to be changed around, such as a mantle. The first is the emotive, the second is the technical.
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Ask yourself what feelings you want your space to convey. That’s not so ethereal as it sounds. For Fall, I wanted to feel warm. I think of a cup of cocoa, rain, and a good book. We lived by the ocean for a couple years, and I loved Fall storms and the peculiar light in the sky after a good drenching. A few books, some faux sea glass, some fall hued florals, and a magnolia wreath were great starting points for communicating those feelings. The other florals, the wheat bunch, and the small frame are all from Michaels.
The simplest rule of thumb of which I am aware is to stick with groups of threes. I like to use a central point, such as an old window, and form two groups of three on either side. Lastly, I added the wreath to the middle to anchor everything. From there you can add whatever you like to the middle of the space, or you could leave it open. Like I said, I tend to keep things pretty simple, so I usually leave it open.
The rest of it
A mantle is not an island. Rather than having it stand on its on, consider adding a few elements to complete the story. We recently gave this fireplace a drastic makeover, and it is one of my favorite things we have done to this house. As part of that process we decided that it was not worth the investment to make this a working fireplace again. A couple of vintage suitcases in the box add a nostalgic feel, and a basket of blankets is handy for snuggling up on the couch.
There you have it. Unfortunately I cannot say my decorating for Fall is having any sort of influence over the weather, which topped 100 degrees today and is supposed to do so again tomorrow. But we are dreaming of rainy days and hot chocolate here!