After weeks of trying to decide how to tackle this mantel, I have finally come up with a solution and I am absolutely in love with how it turned out! Originally, the mantel was none other than where the television resided along with the cable box and, of course, the Xbox. I know what you’re thinking – that sure is a statement piece when you walk in our home, isn’t it? 😉 We decided to change up the layout of our furniture, which meant we were able to relocate the TV and free up the fireplace mantel for a more welcoming entryway. The problem was I had no idea what to do next. College apartments are not known for housing cozy fireplaces and now that we have one I wasn’t sure what in the world I was supposed to do with it.
I wanted our mantel to be decorative and inviting, but to tell a story at the same time. We had several items I wanted to be placed on the mantel, but the challenge was which pieces and how to arrange them. For example, I had no clue how to display or hang my awesome biscuits and gravy banner that I was possibly way too excited about – thanks Kristen! I thought of just using plain nails; however, I decided to use leftover upholstery nails from another project of mine, Guest Cottage Valance (post coming soon!). The upholstery nails do the job of hanging up the banner, yet adds a finishing look.
For the storytelling portion I chose to include a few different pieces of conversation starters. The first and most prominent piece would probably be the chainsaw carved bear – isn’t he too stinkin’ cute?! Yes, you read correctly, he was carved entirely by chainsaw! No hand tools were used in the making of this bear. 😉 We had a hard time grasping the idea too! Our chainsaw bear came from Pigeon Forge, Tennessee where we took our first vacation together. He represents the fun memories made at one of our favorite vacation spots.
Next, I selected some decorative books on Texas A&M University to be placed beside our chainsaw bear. These maroon books complimented our bear nicely by playing off of the red tones of the cedar, all while displaying our Aggie pride of the school where we met. 🙂
As you can see my fireplace mantel is home to a few different projects of mine, one of which is The First Rose. This particular project is very dear to my heart being that it displays the first of many flowers my husband has given to me. Placing this flower on the fireplace mantel was a must because it serves as a sweet reminder of the beginning of our life together. 🙂
My mom gave me this cute mason jar vase and off to the craft closet I went to find some dried floral to place inside! I used some floral left over from another project of mine, Wine, Cheese, and Chalk, and decided on a cotton arrangement with brown dried wheat. I LOVE dried floral because it creates a natural, neutral, and rustic look. All I had to do was trim down the stems of the wheat and arrange as desired! Tip: use the excess stem pieces as filler in the bottom of the vase to help keep your arrangement in place.
The last project here is one of my favorites, Picturesque Window. I am beyond thankful for the photographers who captured this photo of us while we were dancing at our close friends wedding! We had no idea they snapped this photo, but I am so happy they did, as it is one of my absolute favorite photos of us. A picture really does say a thousand words, for this one says everything about our marriage. 🙂 If you are interested in the tutorial for how to size and piece your picture into a window inspired frame be sure to check out our post coming soon.
Have a great day!
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