Not Going Out Like That

How to Style a Mantle



We have a “formal living room” in my house. Formal in the sense that it is it’s own room, and not part of an open floor plan, like many newer and renovated homes are. This is one of the few rooms in the house, where the kids don’t play and there are NO toys. It’s the most traditional room in my house in terms of decor, although there is a mix of styles in the room. The great thing is that my husband & I get to enjoy this room all the time, because the main TV in the house is in here. As much as I like the idea of no TV in the living room, I am also willing to admit that 30-60 minutes of TV is part of my regular daily routine and I am not willing to watch TV in some small dark room while a beautiful, bright living room goes unused. So why am I ranting about TVs in living rooms ? I don’t know. My mantle is in the same room and that is what today’s post is about. It took me a long time to figure out what to do with my mantle in terms of decorating it. I started a Pinterest board just for mantles. And after a few different attempts, I finally settled on something I like, which you can see in these pics below.


There are certain design accessories that are very popular right now such as antlers or urns, and mercury vases, but I felt no personal connection with any of these.  I liked the way many of these things look but they had no connection with my life so I wanted to find objects with significance. I settled on seashells, coral and other sea insipired pieces because I grew up at the beach in Miami. My husband and I are both certified divers and we love the ocean. The piece of coral on top of the stacked books was actually given to my husband by his Grandmother.




As you can see, we have lucite nesting tables and modern architecture books in our home, coupled with regency style tufted chairs, and Chippendale inspired chairs. The rug is a hand woven oriental rug that is pretty traditional but feels updated because of the modern pale palate. I love mixing styles in one room, and there is no formula for this other than trying out different combinations until you find one that works.


Seashells on mantle – Etsy. Stands for shells – Etsy. Purple vases on mantle – Z Gallerie. Nesting tables – CB2. Mirro above mantle – Mortise & Tenon on La Brea in Los Angeles. Purple chairs – vintage and re-upholstered. Bamboo chairs – Ballard Designs but with my own cushions.


2 thoughts on “How to Style a Mantle

  1. I love those lucite tables! You should do more decor posts!

    Christine In Color

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