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A Spring Mantel Blooming in White + How To

Our mantel was all abloom this past weekend, so… I just had to rearrange the mantel!!! I have been studying many other design influencers’ blogsites for just how one puts together a “good vignette,” so I thought I’d share that here today as well!

This all came about from last month’s Bunny Mantel, which I realized I wasn’t quite ready for… I moved the bunnies off to our tea table, which is now over in the family room area under our television. They look nice there and I’ll share them later on.

How to layer a mantel (or any vignette, really?)

Other than the mirror at the back, there were only two layers here and I think that was bugging me! That’s one of the reasons I decided to change-up our mantel display.

There is one problem here that I cannot change: the mantel is really thin on top, so everything has to be thin, or be able to hang off. A few things are hanging off but are heavy enough to stay on regardless. 🙂

So let’s check out some arrangements for details, shall we?

Layers, lots of layers:

So I went searching over on Follow the Yellow Brick Home for details… I love how rich Amber’s rooms always look so I’ve been studying how she does it. And it’s layers…

From back to front in each display Amber creates a mass of layers which gives each of her vignettes a really nice personality and 3-D effect.

Here in her Christmas Music Room she begins with what’s up on the wall: the garlands with a large rectangular mirror underneath.

An oval frame laid sideways infront of the mirror, then a large bust of Mozart (I think!) with a whole smattering of Christmas trees, other smaller busts, flowers in a vase and more…

Debra over at Common Ground creates her layers in this lovely photograph much the same way and she uses another technique…

Create a theme:

The china cabinet in the background creates the first layer; then the large ceramic rabbit and stacked upright platters is the second; with a third layer of spring teacups, a sweet birdie in a nest of moss and little eggs and two or three whorls of grapevines creating nest shapes; finally the fourth layer is the wooden trough itself holding all the springtime decor inside it. Of course her theme is springtime!

Debra is really good with themes!

Color and texture:

Another designer who I really love her religious art pieces and the way she stacks color and texture is Cindy at Edith & Evelyn. Cindy uses beautiful European soft furniture colors with whites and neutrals to great effect. She also uses gold ~ gold as a main accent on picture frames, on many of her French and European-style furniture pieces.

a nighttime photo lightened for effect…
Future projects lying on the chair… 😉 I thought you’d like to see the living room, too.

For our mantel…

I looked at how these designers put their rooms or vignettes together and went for it!

I removed everything except the two hurricane lamps, which I kept flanking the mirror on either side. then I brought over the little lying down angel ~ I like how she is relaxing! Made me think she is out relaxing under the blooming pear tree and enjoying its shade.

I played around with where the angel fit best moving left or right, and also facing more forward or not (without making her fall off the mantel).

My main elements:

  • cement
  • nature
  • white
  • greenery
  • heights

Cement pieces were brought in with the capital (just found at Hobby Lobby)used as a riser for the ceramic pitcher (also earthen)holding the pear tree branches. The candlestick I made a couple of years ago also has a “cement look” with its layers of grey and green chalk paint. And another smaller cement wall angel lays down by the left hand hurricane lamp.

Nature of course was front and center with the gorgeous blooming pear branches!!! I am sooo happy that I remembered to share them with you. After last weekend’s rains, I looked over and there they were saying, “See me!” I am sooo glad they called me over so I could share them with y’all. 🙂 The books are mostly gardening books, too. I love the David Austin Rose booklets the company sends out each spring for gardeners to pick their next roses to try in their yards!!!

White was brought in with books, the pitcher, the flowers themselves, a small creamer and a small white flower pot holding a moss ball.

Greenery in the flowers, of course, plus several moss balls in a couple of sizes add their spring touches.

Heights which I forgot about originally but realized added impact! I have one moss ball on the candlestick (high), a second on the white flower pot (medium), and another ball on the mantel itself (low).

These blooms put off an odd scent, too, which my husband said he though he smelled a dead rat… NOT the best way to describe beautiful blooms! But he didn’t know how else to say what he was smelling. They do have an unusual scent and my guess it is to attract bees and pollinators.

I really love how this mantel turned out with it’s bits of green and a little pink here and there! For once, I have the mantel just the way I like it. Busy but happy!

Here I photographed the next afternoon when we had sun again… Love the whites and this is really my favorite way to decorate ~ the ethereal effect I am usually looking for in vignettes…

Hope this was fun for you, too!

Barb 🙂

8 thoughts on “A Spring Mantel Blooming in White + How To”

  1. Hi Barb, first of all thankyou so much for your sweet words about my vignettes, and for including me with the talent of Amber and Cindy. Your mantel is beautiful, and I’m loving the “white” theme with your florals and china and that adorable reclining cherub. It’s amazing how color is such a unifying theme. I’ve been working on my spring mantel too; wanting to stick with early spring, but will morph into Easter very soon. Hope you’re having a great week!

  2. I struggle a little putting vignettes together. It always feels like I’m missing something but you’ve given lots of food for thought and so many gorgeous pictures to refer back to as well.

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