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***Edited Post*** New Links. Because some of these items are no longer available, you will find alternative (yet just as amazing) products!

Decorating a holiday mantel is one of our favorite annual traditions. This year, with all of us spending more time than ever in our living rooms, turning a mantel into a holiday focal point can feel more special. Because this Christmas is our first in this home, we faced a new challenge: how do we decorate our fireplace WITHOUT having a mantel?! With a little creativity and a lot of Christmas spirit, we were able to incorporate our favorite elements of a well-adorned mantel. Regardless of how your space is configured, following these easy tips for making your mantel a focal point in the heart of your home will surely add holiday magic.

Holiday Family Room
Holiday "Mantel" | EH Design

We love a mantel that feels like an extension of the décor in the room. This year, we infused natural elements with neutrals and tonal blues into our Christmas tree decorations, which echoed our home’s existing palette, which we then carried over to our “mantel” (read: a mantel-esque console to the right of our fireplace), by mimicking the color palate and feel.

Fresh or faux greens are elements that play beautifully on a mantel, and we used them liberally this year. Rather than weigh the décor down with heavy garland, we added sprigs of fresh greens like eucalyptus and juniper berries. We brought that greenery to our “mantel: by layering in juniper and eucalyptus garlands with strands of wooden bead garland which we also used on our tree and throughout our home. We wanted to echo our home’s color story with our décor this year, so we focused on natural earth tones, neutrals and blues, but it’s completely okay to incorporate contrasting holiday tones, too! Whether your holiday theme is tartan plaid or candy cane red and white, the key here is to ensure the palette is consistent and that your elements aren't fighting with each other. If you find some colors aren't connecting, try incorporating textiles like ribbons, pillows or throw blankets that combine both to tie it all together.

Mantel alternative
Holiday "Mantel" | EH Design

Play with tones. One of our favorite seating spaces in our home is our comfy traditional armchairs, which are upholstered in luxe deep blue velvet. Tones of the same blue can be found in our rug, lamp, and accent pillows, and we continued adding accents of blue in our holiday décor. Juniper sprigs in the tree and on the mantel, ribbon stocking holders in tonal blues, and presents with bows in blue tones all contribute to the cohesion of the space. We echoed our home’s neutral and natural notes by using wooden beaded garlands, white and gold ribbon, and neutral-toned accents, like a vintage toy truck, interspersed throughout.

Deep Navy Velvet Swivel Chairs
Luxe Deep Navy Velvet Swivel Chairs | EH Design

Arial Family Room Space
Family Room | EH Design

Don't be afraid to add a little of the unexpected. We decorated our mantel with a mix of ornaments, Himalayan bells, berries and garland. While pairing the three may not be the first thing that comes to mind, they all fall beautifully in our color palette, all while adding a touch of interest and surprise.

Swap out or add in a larger-scale, seasonal piece. We love our Christmas sign that not only looks beautiful and works well color-wise but also evokes the spirit and wonder of the holidays. *This is a custom piece!

May You Never Be too Old to Search the Skies on Christmas Eve
May You Never Be too Old to Search the Skies on Christmas Eve | EH Design

Red Barn | EH Design

Coordinate your stockings. A matching set of monogrammed stockings in a universal seasonal shade that can easily be incorporated into any décor is a great investment. If you already have special stockings that aren't working with your theme, consider using a ribbon that works with your palette to hang them.

Quilted Christmas Stockings with ribbon
Quilted Christmas Stockings | EH Design

However you approach your mantel and holiday décor this year, we hope you soak in all the magic of the season.


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