Mantel Styling Tips

We challenged bloggers to style a mantel in 30 seconds. See what they did and get their smart tips for decorating a mantel.

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Popular in Decorating

A Colorful, Pattern-Filled Home Makeover

See how one sharp-eyed do-it-yourselfer used color, pattern, and artful touches to add character to a once-bland home.


    Everything in this slideshow

    • Come On In

      Decked with colorful patterns, unusual textures, and decorative art pieces, this once-bland home now lives large with style. Green lattice wallpaper and white wainscoting create a welcoming statement in the entryway. A fresh coat of charcoal-gray paint refreshed the door, which was rescued from a salvage yard. The dark hue repeats on a slender console table and the sconces above.

    • Shape Shifters

      Creative decorating solutions throughout the home visually expand the space despite its relatively small size. In the living room, a large mirror above the cool white sofa reflects light and adds depth. Natural textures -- the driftwood floor lamp, the sisal carpet, the buttery-soft leather chair -- scattered throughout the space add dimension to the neutral walls and furnishings. A banana-leaf tree placed in front of the large window hits the room with bold shape and bright color.

    • Dine in Style

      Used on one wall in the dining room, patterned brown-and-turquoise wallpaper injects the space with a hint of glamour. A large round table makes the most of the room's limited space and boasts plenty of seating for the homeowners and guests. A rug defines the boundaries of the eating area in the open floor plan. Overhead, an oversize red chandelier lends a colorful surprise that energizes the dining room both day and night.

    • Stylish Storage

      An antique hutch provides convenient dining room storage for serving dishes, china, and table linens. Some of the cabinets boast clear glass fronts, ensuring the unit doesn't weigh down the look of the tiny dining area. A coat of muted mint-green paint also lightens the unit's look and adds another layer of color to the dining space.

    • Update with Paint

      A dedicated do-it-yourselfer, the homeowner says her weapon of choice is a bucket of paint. To give the kitchen a fresh new look, she painted the birch cabinets light gray. The warm browns of the walls and wood flooring ensure the cabinets don't look too cool.

    • Optical Illusions

      After painting the cabinets, the homeowners replaced the outdated white appliances with stainless-steel models to bounce around light and add sparkle to the narrow kitchen. The range boasts commercial-grade features, packing the power of a pro range in a standard-size unit. Removing select cabinet doors and painting the boxes light blue also helps the space feel open and airy. Over the range, a stainless-steel backsplash and large zinc letters add character. 

    • DIY Wine Rack

      In an open cabinet next to the refrigerator, terra-cotta drain pipes painted white and hot-glued in place create convenient and creative wine storage. Cookbooks displayed on the shelf above add hints of color to the otherwise neutral kitchen space.

    • Softened Up

      Round elements such as the large sisal rug and eye-catching rattan pendant lamp soften the hard edges of this square sitting room. Outdoor siding installed vertically on the walls adds height to the space. Bold-pattern window treatments and artwork keep the neutral palette lively and fresh. Oversize sink-right-in chairs invite sitting and staying awhile, whether it's for an afternoon of reading or a gathering with friends.

    • Easy Updates

      The focal-point fireplace adds texture to the neutral family room. A coat of paint dresses up the ordinary brick surround, and the addition of a wooden mantelpiece lends rustic appeal. The painted brick blends well with the room's neutral palette, while the wooden addition picks up on the natural textures featured in accessories.

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      Sleeping in Style

      In the master bedroom, the homeowners concealed an off-center window above the bed with a wall covered in weathered wood. Hung horizontally, the wood planks add interest and warmth to the room. The other walls were painted a rich brown hue that picks up on the gray-brown tones in the wood, lending a neutral backdrop that creates a cozy mood.

    • 11 of 16

      Personal Touches

      Retro dark-stained side tables received a modern upgrade with turquoise paint. Repurposed as nightstands, the tables' traditional shapes blend with the room's other furnishings, but their striking hue -- which matches the bedding print -- ensures they look modern and fresh. Large nailheads from a crafts store trim the headboard and liven up its basic slipcover. 

    • 12 of 16

      Lively Retreat

      Similar to other rooms throughout the house, the master bathroom benefits from a variety of natural textures. Yellow grass-cloth wallpaper adds a rough, woven texture to the smooth surfaces of the bathroom. A round wooden frame placed in the center of the bathroom's large mirror creates an unexpected focal point.

    • 13 of 16

      Hard at Work

      Beaded-board walls and a quirky light fixture add character to the neutral office space. Floating shelves along two walls offer storage for a variety of office supplies, most of which are held in metal or wire bins, without weighing down the work space with heavy bookshelves. The metal storage baskets blend well with other vintage-inspired pieces scattered throughout the room.

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      Function Meets Style

      Vintage-inspired accessories add style to the hardworking home office space. Bold, graphic numerals scattered throughout the work space add visual appeal and unite eclectic decorations with a common theme.

    • 15 of 16

      Room for a Crowd

      With limited backyard space, the homeowners converted a portion of their front yard into an outdoor living room suited for entertaining. Sturdy outdoor fabrics adorn the seat cushions and decorative throw pillows, adding color and character to the otherwise neutral gathering space.

    • 16 of 16
      Next Slideshow Modern Bathroom Design Ideas

      Modern Bathroom Design Ideas

      Characterized by sleek surfaces, simple fixtures, and minimalist decor, modern bathrooms effortlessly deliver casual, contemporary style. Explore our favorite modern bathroom designs to learn how to incorporate the style into your space.
      Begin Slideshow »



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