Friday, April 23, 2010

Mantel Make-Over

I have been obsessed with making over my mantel. I can't seem to get it out of my mind!

I see all these beautiful pictures of beautiful mantels.
Like this one that Chris put together (that was my first link, did it work?).
Or this one at Beth's house.
It makes me wonder how in the world these women do this?
And, more importantly, why can't I?

So, I decided to start brainstorming.
How could I turn this......into something beautiful?

And those wires from the TV just drive me BoNkErS! I HATE, HATE, HATE them!
And, Mike doesn't quite know how to put them through the wall without messing up the horsehair plaster. Our house is 90+ years old. But I say, "Where there's a will, there's a way!"

The first thing I did was look at all kinds of mantels online. I wanted to know what other people did.
And then I started to shop the house.
I looked around my house for things I already have that could make my mantel beautiful.
(I found a candle lamp, a frame, a bird house, and a statue that all had potential.)
Then, I looked at yard sales and found another frame for 25 cents and some candle holders for $2 for the pair. (I ended up running to Marshall's and T J Maxx for more mantel finds but only found the candles to go in the holders for $5/pair.)

And this is what I ended up with...
But I'll break down what I did with each item.
  • First, the candle holders. They were a yard sale find at $2 for the pair. The woman wanted $3 but I talked her down! I got the candles from Marshall's for $5. I don't like spending lots of money on candles, so I buy them at T J Maxx (or a like store) or on sale.
  • Next, the statue was a 2nd anniversary gift from my wonderful husband. We spent our anniversary at Rehoboth Beach, DE and I had wanted a Willow Tree figurine for a while, so he picked one up for me at this neat little shop. This was already on my mantel.
  • The bird house came from a cute little shop called Sheldon's on Main out on Main St. in Ephrata. My grandma fell in love with it (we were shopping together), and so did I. She just insisted that I HAD to have it, and so, she bought it for my home. Thanks, Grandma!
  • Next, this picture frame is my quarter yard sale find. I don't have a picture of my own printed that I would like to go on the mantel and I was in no mood to run out and pick one up after having it printed. I wanted the mantel done! So I found this card that we had. My husband's aunt took this photo and had it turned into a card. If you look closely, she even signed her work. I like the picture, but I want my own in there in the near future.
  • This big frame was a wedding gift. It had a cheesy paper in there that you were to put your own photo on top of, but neither Mike, nor I, ever really liked it. Even though the frame was nice. I sat down, tore all of that cheesy stuff off, and got out my scrapbooking supplies. This took 4 pieced of paper and some ribbon. It houses scripture from Isaiah 40. Here's a better look:
  • Lastly, the lamp is another yard sale find. I got it a year or two ago and it's been sitting nicely in my bedroom ever since. But it called to me about wanting a new home! So, down to the living room it came!
And there you have the finished mantel! A major improvement! And while the wires are still hanging down the wall, you can't even see them!

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