If you’re looking for winter mantel decorating ideas that aren’t too “Christmassy,” here’s a festive and sparkly idea that even works as winter mantel decor after Christmas. But first, I should explain where this mantel is for new readers who might be confused! If you missed the makeover post, my Mom’s apartment has a fireplace (yay!) that I painted a rich blue with chalk paint. Not one to shy away from blue, I actually painted the whole wall the same color for a bold focal wall:
My Mom asked me to help her decorate her new blue fireplace for winter and I brought over all of my seasonal decor: ornaments, candle holders, battery operated lights, faux garland, etc. I used the lights and garland around my kitchen window last year – but I also scooped some more from the Good Neighbor Shed at the landfull this year too, lol. Unfortunately, on the day I went over to decorate I wasn’t feeling well (back pain, nothing contagious), so I actually just dropped off the goodies and then turned around and drove the hour back home. I described my suitable now and also as winter mantel after Christmas “vision” to my Mom and she said she’d be able to do it herself. Weeeellllllll, she got really frustrated with the garland and gave up, plucking three candle holders from my box of seasonal decor and scowling at the rest.
Wired faux evergreen garland IS super annoying – remember how I did the exact same thing earlier this month? That’s why my kitchen only has a simple DIY felt leaf garland, lol. I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree (although… maybe that’s also why I scooped a bunch of garland from the landfill – it is just annoying to everyone). I wasn’t going to let this stupid faux evergreen garland best BOTH of us. I was feeling better last week, so I drove back into town and we gave it another shot. With my encouragement, Mom was able to put together the simple winter mantel decor I had envisioned:
- A lush and thick layer of faux leaf garland (we used three strands, this one looks more lush)
- A generous sprinkling of fairy lights (battery operated)
- All of it adorned with beautiful DIY snowflake ornaments my Mom years ago (here’s similar)
I love how the beaded snowflake ornaments pop against the dark blue fireplace. My Mom made them, but here’s something similar you can buy. I also found some craft kits to make your own: click here and click here to see them. Should I share a tutorial for these next year?
We also found little plastic faceted beads which, don’t laugh because they’re such a little silly thing, are sentimental.
They belonged to my maternal Grandmother, who was very frugal and really treasured any type of beautiful little thing that crossed her path. I don’t even know where she got these, but she used to put them in a bowl or the bottom of a vase. I remember her commenting about them once, and she was so sheepish about liking such a silly thing. I was struck but how much joy she derived from something so little so that random little memory always stuck with me. When she passed and we cleared out her home, I took them. I told the story to my Mom and gave them to her and we tucked those into the garland as well. They catch the light really beautifully, I think my Grandmother would be thrilled.
The end result is so pretty and still minimal (my Mom, like me, tends to prefer pretty simple seasonal decor). Plus, while it looks great now and complements the nearby Christmas tree beautifully, it’s also suitable winter mantel decor after Christmas too. It’s really just “wintry” and not super Christmassy. The best part is, we re-imagined and re-used things we already had, so this was 100% free (which would also make my thrifty Grandmother proud).
I hope you like this winter mantel decor after Christmas idea. You might be wondering why there’s a Christmas tree when we don’t celebrate Christmas anymore? I’ll give you the scoop on that soon!