Sprucing up the Mantel for the Holidays

by Lesley Harris Colvett

While the Christmas tree certainly takes the main stage when decorating for the holidays, one of the other most important spots of the home is the mantel. The 4Memphis designers offer their expert advice for creating a unique and festive mantel.

Lisa Hogue

The Feathered Nest
7582 Southern Ave.
Germantown, TN 38138
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Christmas is the most magical time of the year. It is a time to transform our homes into a holiday wonderland. The tree is the main focus of your holiday decor and the mantel is the second most important area to consider.
I love transforming my mantel every year with something new and festive. There are so many options. A well-decorated mantel can take your Christmas decor to the next level. The mantel is usually the focal point of the room, and the first thing you see when you enter the room.
I am sharing three different mantel looks to help inspire you. The styles are rustic and minimalistic, classic red and green whimsical, and red and green playing off of the rustic feel.
I always like to start with greenery, then add ornaments, ribbon and holiday items. Look for opportunities to add bows to items that you already have on the mantel. Lanterns look great filled with a festive candle or ornaments. Add a wreath with a large festive bow to a mirror that hangs above mantel. Incorporate lights with the greenery to add a little sparkle.
Have a Merry Christmas and enjoy the Season... remember the most important thing is time spent with the ones you love.

Warner Moore

Partner in Allyson James Design
3566 Walnut Grove Road
Memphis, TN. 38111
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It’s here! Christmas is upon us. Time to pull out the decorations...How shall we do it this year? It’s a good idea to use what you have and get a few new things to freshen it up.
The fireplace is one one of the first places that guests are drawn into upon entering a room; therefore, it’s important to decorate your mantel with Christmas joy!
Let’s start with a simple but elegant design. Drape garland, hopefully fresh for the look and smell, over the mantel hanging down each side. Secure it using large, clear glass hurricanes with pillar candles at each end of the mantel. You can stud the garland with berries for color and texture. Take down your painting and hang a wreath over the mantle for a fresh look. Ribbons and bows are always a welcome addition.
For an “out of the woods” look use cedar garland studded with pine cones. To create height, use potted blooming plants in terracotta containers. Paperwhites and amaryllis are perfect for this. Adding fruit and bundles of cinnamon sticks add to the texture, and votive candles complete the picture.

"It’s a good idea to use what you have and get a few new things to freshen it up."

To create a personal look, start with evergreen garland and anchor it with silver julep cups filled with red carnations. Place the cups up and down the mantel. Then carefully place holiday cards you’ve received over the years, plus currently, in and around the garland. To do a vintage look, fill large glass urns with Christmas balls and ornaments. Place on either side of the mantel. Use faux snow on top of the mantel and place some of your favorite collectibles among the snowdrifts.
All in all, you can create a new look by using what you have collected over the years or create a whole new look!
Merry Christmas from Allyson and Warner!

Brannon Jones

Visual Merchandising Coordinator
Palladio Home and Garden
2169 Central Ave.
Memphis, TN 38104

As the visual coordinator for two of the Palladio showrooms, it’s my job to create all kinds of vignettes throughout the year. It’s fun having access to so many beautiful pieces of furniture, art, and décor to mix and match, but when a key element from a vignette is sold, I often have to just re-do the entire scene! We’re constantly rearranging around here.

We have an entire warehouse full of architectural salvage pieces, so to assemble this "rustic-glam" holiday mantelpiece vignette, I went into the warehouse and found a 1940s era mantel whose white paint was chipping off to reveal a great dusty rose color beneath.

Along with the magnolia leaves, and the Louis-Philippe mirror, that dusty rose color is what really inspired the entire vignette. It’s repeated in the pink leather armchairs, and in the framed contemporary watercolor painting layered over the mirror.

"To achieve that layered (but not cluttered!) look on your mantel display, start with larger pieces, and work your way down to the details. Repeat a select few colors and textures throughout."

To achieve that layered (but not cluttered!) look on your mantel display, start with larger pieces, and work your way down to the details. Repeat a select few colors and textures throughout. I chose gold, glass, and natural elements such as birch wood and magnolia leaves. The magnolia leaf garland is actually strung together by hand from clippings! The Palladio staff has several talented artists who collaborate in creating displays that inspire the designers and customers who shop with us.

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