Christmas in July…Inspiration starts with a Fireplace Mantel Focal Point
Welcome to Life at Bella Terra! Thank you for being here today as I am excited to share Christmas in July inspiration with 16 other bloggers. If you are coming here for the first time, welcome. If you are a current subscriber, thank you so much for your support. We are blessed with having a historic property with lots of fireplaces. Long before central heating, most older homes only had access to a fireplace for warmth. Typically, the fireplace is the focal point of a room, therefore, it’s the first place I start when planning my holiday decorations.
If you don’t have a fireplace, no worries. Find a focal point in your room~a staircase, a set of windows, a beautiful bookcase or even a blank wall. The same techniques apply for your holiday attention. For example, our front hall doesn’t have a fireplace but the staircase is where I start the decorating and tie that into the theme of the front door and living room fireplace.
Choose a color
Christmas in July prompts me to think about what theme or color scheme I would like to use for the holidays. Since I like continuity, generally what I use on the front door will lead to similar colors on the bannister and mantels. That way, at least in the entry, there is some sense of consistency.
For example, I will try and use the same ribbon and similar greens~pine, cedar or magnolia. Adding color with artificial or real berries is another way to keep a color theme similar yet different. I do love red and green for Christmas as those colors are not really used for other holidays throughout the year.
Showcase a Collection
If you have any holiday collectibles, like me, it’s a fun time of year to showcase them. We have a snow globe and nutcracker collection. Every year I would bring these out and load up a mantel, however, in the past few years, especially with the children gone, I am decorating with less.
A beloved treasure from our trip to Russia is a collection of hand painted Matryoshka nesting dolls. During the year they are hidden inside the biggest one, but during the holidays I love taking out all of them and displaying the group as a whole.
Feature Holiday Art
Many years ago, I purchased holiday prints, painted them with an acrylic gel (to look like a real painting) and framed them. It’s fun to change out artwork and add a holiday focal point to the mantel.
Enhance Your Room’s Color
Our dining room, due to a large Oriental rug, has its own set of colors (pink, burgundy and green). For years I struggled with holiday decor here because red and green just didn’t work. When I finally decide to use the colors in the room, I now love my holiday decor here. Not many people think of pink for the holidays, but once I start to incorporate this color it really resonates Christmas.
Dusty pink, rose, and various shades of green bring this room to life. Don’t fear using a non-traditional color for the holidays. If it works for you, then do it! Quite honestly, I am surprised to find ornaments and bottle brush trees in shades of pink.
Make Your Own
It doesn’t take a big budget to make a mantel or focal point special. The mantel in our breakfast room is decorated with orange slices from our tree that I dried in the oven. Wooden house collection is from Target’s dollar section. Add a bit of faux garland and you have an attractive, affordable holiday mantel.
The bead and tassel garland is an easy DIY and you can see it here.
Use what You Have
My friend, Barbara, from Mantel and Table, searched my house for items to make this lovely mantel in my art room. Using artificial peonies, pinecone ornaments, gold berries, sheer ribbon and candles, she creates this very feminine swag.
Chloe, from Celebrate and Decorate finds a set of elk antlers and creates this gorgeous outdoor mantel. The rustic theme and elements are perfect with the rugged stacked stone fireplace.
Chas, from Chas’ Crazy Creations, takes coffee filters to make this frilly, lighted garland for our dark mahogany fireplace mantel in the library. See? It doesn’t take lots of cash to be creative.
Look to Nature
Tree clippings, pinecones, moss, dried flowers and other gifts from your own backyard are perfect elements for a beautiful mantel. Or ask a neighbor for some clippings. Be creative!
Size and Scope
Perhaps the biggest challenge for me is our living room fireplace. The mantel is deep AND long. Getting the scale right has always been a challenge. When my blogging friends visited in 2020, they were kind enough to tackle decorating some of the mantels. It was then that I learned about size and scope from Chloe (Celebrate and Decorate). Look at the gorgeous decorating job she did in the living room.
Here is when I learned about using Command Strips to wire your garland. Lots of garland, berries and simple candles and bells, make this just fabulous.
Make it Your Own
How you decorate reflects you, your home, your family and your vibe. I know we sometimes get caught up in what might be trendy. Sometimes just changing things up and moving traditions around can refresh your holiday decor.
If you happen to be in Phoenix on October 20, please join us for a Fall Styling Workshop. The goal of this is to gather like minded people together and learn how to transition your fall decor to the holidays, while achieving your own unique style. We will spend the day decorating mantels, stying a holiday table and sharing good food and conversation with new and old friends. To see more about this event, click here. We’d love for you to join us! Space is limited so send in your registration as soon as possible.
Christmas in July Blog Hop
Now it’s time to see more holiday inspiration from 16 other very talented bloggers. Many thanks to Rachel from The Ponds Farmhouse for organizing this event. If you came here from Robyn’s French Nest, I hope you enjoyed the 5 easy things to do now for to prepare for the holidays.
Join the Christmas In July Blog Hop for more holiday inspiration. To follow along, click the highlighted blog name.
Don’t forget to check out Rachel at The Ponds Farmhouse at the top of this blog hop, if you haven’t been there yet. Thanks for joining me today!