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The holiday mantel: Ideas for dressing up your home’s hearth

Molly Cerreta Smith loves writing about all things mommy, parenting, food, health and travel. When she's not staring into the face of her Mac, she loves to hike, read, do messy crafts with her kids and compete in BBQ competitions with he...

Make the most of your mantel

When you think of dressing your mantel for the holiday season, do visions of boring old greenery dance in your head? Forget the ho-hum foliage and try some of these fun new ideas for dressing up your home's heart for the holidays.

Holiday mantel

Jo Pearson, Michaels' manager of Where Creativity Happens, says that if you can't part with last year's garland, find a way to make it new again! She suggests stringing some lights through it, anchoring either side with Christmas-inspired bows, or weaving some holiday ribbon through it. Wiring in a few fun ornaments can quickly liven up a limp garland.

Make a mantel message

She also says that the mantel is the perfect place to display your holiday message. She suggests hanging a silk or paper banner from the hearth. This can be a DIY project for you crafty ones out there, or a perfect way to get your kids' in the holiday spirit, as if they aren't already.

In the spirit of recycling, she suggests going through your old paper from your scrapbooking days (c'mon, who wasn't into that?) and utilizing it to give your hearth a little holiday happiness.

Creative candlescape

The mantel is also a great place to display a candlescape, according to Pearson. But you can go beyond just placing a jarred candle atop the hearth. Pearson suggests thinking outside the box when it comes to what you can use. "An upside down wine glass can become a beautiful candlestick," she says. Just be sure to drink that vino before you give up your glass!

She also advises wrapping ordinary candles in Christmas ribbon or leftover scrap paper. This, ladies, should go without saying, but these "wrapped" candles would be for show only, unless you feel like putting on a fire display.… Christmas picks are another fun way to liven up ordinary candles for your candlescape.

Put it on display

The mantel is the perfect place to display those fragile Christmas ornaments that the baby (or your four-legged baby) would be trying to tear from the tree all season long. Save yourself the hassle and get them out of reach! Set them on the mantel alongside holiday figurines and stockings, or intermingle them with some vases filled with glass ball ornaments, pine cones, or even oranges stuck with Christmas picks, jewels, or cloves. (Bonus, this last one also serves to fill your whole room with the scent of the season. You're welcome!)

Holiday how-to

How to display holiday cards

Do you love the annual flurry of holiday greetings, but not the tumbling mess it creates on the mantel? This creative solution is a fun and easy way to show off your cards.

More holiday decorating ideas

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