Decor – Fall Mantel Decoration

For this Décor post I would like to highlight a 2004 Fall Mantel Decoration from our old house in California.  In the family room three animal prints were hung above the fireplace, a large duck print and two vintage prints of a peasant and quail that I had purchased at an antique store.  Using the artwork as inspiration, I went shopping at my local Craft store for themed accessories to use for the mantel decoration.  I start assembling the decoration by using a pine garland placed across the mantel.  Next, I intertwined a string of amber pine cone lights and laced brown autumn 2” wide ribbon throughout the garland.  Then, I added several bunches of berries, red apples and yellow pears.  The final touch was a family of stuffed quails which were the perfect way to tie in the mantel decoration with the animal prints.


This 2004 Fall Mantel Decoration is a wonderful example of using existing home accessories as inspiration for seasonal decoration.  So, take a look around your house and maybe you will find ideas for some holiday decorations to create for your own home!

Decor – Fall decorations


For this post I am going to give everyone a glimpse of the fall decorations that we had used in our house in California several years ago.  When I start my seasonal decorations, I always begin with a door wreath to set the mood for the decorations that our guests will find in the interior of the home.  Our California house was no exception and for the front door I used a very unusual wreath, instead of a circular one it was an artificial pine teardrop shape wreath with several sunflowers and a festive matching ribbon.  Although this door decoration is very traditional sometimes going with the unexpected form or style can spark some creative ideas.

In the living room of our California home there was a large oak entertainment center that is now in the basement of our Midwest home.  On the top of the entertainment center I used a long pine garland intertwined with lights that would remain for both the Fall and Christmas seasons.  I had planned on keeping the pine garland in place on the entertainment center and switching out the Fall decorations for Christmas decorations after Thanksgiving, so that is the reason the lights were pre-strung onto the pine garland. For the Fall season, I decorated the garland with autumn leaves, berries and golden roses.


Adjacent to our living room in California was the dining room, which was separated by the staircase leading to the upper floor and beneath the staircase was a space with an oak curio cabinet.  In keeping with my design concept of changing my seasonal decorations from year to year, the floral decoration on the curio cabinet in our California house changed from year to year.  One year, I used a floral decoration which started with a layer of greenery and I added red roses, blue flowers and turkey feathers.  The next year, I used two wooden pumpkins and autumn leaves.  (If you look at last month’s Décor post, Halloween decorations, you will see the same pumpkins used in the family room bookshelves of our Midwest home … just another example of re-purposing holiday decorations!)


In the dining room is a lovely oak china cabinet with a beautiful still life painting hanging above.  On the top of the china cabinet, I used a long pine garland intertwined with lights the same way that I did in the living room.  I layered autumn leaves and gold berries onto the garland and added artificial fruits such as red apples, green pears, oranges and lemons.  I think the fruit garland compliments the still life painting beautifully!


The final room I had decorated in our California house was the family room which adjoins the kitchen.  Above the fireplace are three wildlife prints, the large one is of mallard ducks and the other smaller ones are a pheasant and quail.  On the fireplace mantel, I used another long pine garland intertwined with a string of amber pinecone lights.  Next, I layered an autumn ribbon throughout the garland and added small artificial pears and apples clusters.  For a finishing touch, I added several artificial quails to keep with the wildlife theme used in the framed prints.


Decor – Fall Home Decorations

FALL … the weather turns a little cooler; there is a fire in the fireplace, and steaming hot chocolate in mugs to drink!  It is now the time to change out the spring/summer decorations and replace them with fall decorations.

Due to the unpredictable Midwest weather, I usually keep the exterior decorations of the house simple.  This year I decided to embellish a simple wooden pumpkin sign I used as a front door decoration from a previous year.  Because of the shape of the sign, I choose an oval wreath to match and added some gold chrysanthemums and fall leaves that I already had.

Since the fall season has two holidays, I have two different signs for our front porch.  For Halloween I have a “Trick or Treat” wooden black cat and for Thanksgiving I have a resin Scarecrow on a wooden stick tied with a raffia bow.  To complete the porch, I set out four pumpkins.

This year, I am excited to add one of my recent Craft projects.  The Corncob Luminaries were very easy to make and a great way to use recycled water bottles. On Thanksgiving Day, these luminaries will be placed on the walkway leading to our front door and will set a festive mood to greet our Thanksgiving dinner guests.

Now, it is time to decorate the interior of our house.

In our entry, I have a low bench and I place a wooden “scarecrow” crow (funny!) with a sign that reads, “Welcome, Happy Harvest”.  On a pedestal next to the bench, I have a white rose floral arrangement and with the addition of some peasant feathers it changes to a fall festive look!  (Another idea is to add fall leaves or peacock feathers to an existing arrangement – these simple ideas can really stretch a holiday decorating budget – maybe you can buy a fabulous fall sweater with the money saved!)

In the family room, I arrange several pine sprays on the mantel over the fireplace and add several ceramic fall leaves and red berry sprays.  The pine sprays usually stay on the mantel and I will remove the Fall decorations and replace them with the Christmas decorations later – this saves time and expenses.  I also place two charming scarecrows on the fireplace mantel to complete this area.


In the library, I have a small glass front lawyer’s bookcase which displays my Boyd’s Bear Collection.  On the top shelf, I add my seasonal figurines which for Thanksgiving are a set of Pilgrim and Indians Boyd’s Bears.  On the middle shelf, I add fall leaves to my existing Bear figurine collection.  The bottom shelf holds my Boyd’s Bear Village.  I usually decorate this for every season and for fall I replace the summer/spring trees with bare branch trees.  I add a pumpkin patch and a couple of turkeys to give this display the look of a crisp fall afternoon!


In the dining room, the main decoration will be a lovely Fall Victorian Centerpiece for the table.  This is another one of my recent projects for fall.  (Please, look for this week’s Craft post for full instructions)  Since I am using this new centerpiece, I have moved the floral arrangement I use year round in the dining room to a table in the family room and add peasant feathers to give it a great fall look.  I love when my decorations are versatile, not specific to one area, and can be used in other rooms of the house.  This allows me to be creative with my holiday decorations and it keeps the process fresh every year!

In the china cabinet, I arrange three Currier and Ives porcelain house that I bought several years ago from a local craft store.  These are arranged on a mirrored silver display stand.  I add several small figurines and pine trees to create a charming display that transitions from Fall to Christmas.  I love when my holiday decorations can be used for more then one season!

To complete the dining room, I place a “memory tree” on the tea table.  During the Fall season this small tabletop pine tree is decorated with small family photo frames and golden feathers.  Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks and with this special decoration it is a wonderful way to honor and remember our families.  (Please, look for an upcoming Craft post with full instructions on creating your own Memory Tree or Wreath)

In the kitchen, I have a basket of artificial vegetables placed in the corner and it usually stays there year-round.  For the Fall season, I add a resin pumpkin carved with the words, “Harvest Welcome”.   Above the kitchen cabinets, I have a picture frame that reads, “Celebrate family, friends, traditions” which is perfect for Thanksgiving.  Normally it is displayed with a trio of decorative green plates and ceramic tea pots but I replace the teapots with two ceramic pumpkins for Fall.  Once again, I love to multi-purpose the items in the house by adding simple decorative items to an existing display and this saves both time and expenses.  (You’ve got to love that idea, right?)