Are you like me and always have a hard time decorating your mantel in August? All of the 4th of July decorations have been packed away, yet it is too early for pumpkins and fall leaves. I’ve seen lots of back to school themed late summer mantels, but I wanted to do something different. I put together a late summer mantel that I think transitions well to fall…using various materials like wood, glass, and metal to create interest and orange accents that hint at summer sunsets.
How to Style a Late Summer Mantel
Choose Various Materials
I wanted my late summer mantel to have a variety of elements to keep things interesting. I chose a mixture of wood, metal, glass, and softer natural pieces. The piece of drift wood in the center was a beach discovery by my son many years ago and he graciously allows me to use it in my decorating. Wood signs are very popular right now, and this Virginia one adds a nice touch of home. The vintage orange lantern hints at the outdoors, where we spend a lot of time in the summer. The teal vase on the right is another metal element.
The antique Mason jars were the first glass material that I chose. I usually use them in my kitchen decor, so this is something new for me. I also moved the orange vase from the bookshelves to the mantel (gotta love shopping your house!) To soften things a bit, I kept the cotton stems in the Mason jars (where they have lived for a while) and added a cute little (faux) plant that my kids bought for me. It adds just the right touch of greenery.
Mix Old and New Pieces
I like mixing old and new pieces when I style a display area. It gives the vignette a more collected look, than simply just buying all new items. I love using these old books in my decorating as they remind me of summer reading and also give a nod to the upcoming school year. They are tied with twine because they are literally falling apart. They provide a unique way to elevate items in a display. The Mason jars and the vintage lantern round out the old pieces.
My favorite new piece is the wooden Virginia sign that I bought this summer at a cute little shop in Bedford, VA called BVA Merchantile. If you are in the area you should definitely check it out – lots of cute things! I’m not sure if you can tell in the photo, but the background of the sign lists many of the cities and towns in Virginia, and comes with a little heart sticker that you can place over your favorite one. (I have yet to place mine- oops!)
Add an Accent Color
I love color and always feel that adding a pop of color to your vignette, in this case, a late summer mantel, adds a touch of personality! Color makes me happy. Vibrant colors make me even happier, and don’t we want to feel happy in our homes? Adding orange to my mantel reminds me of late summer sunsets…and hints at the coming months of fall and all things orange.
I hope these ideas inspire you to create a late summer mantel of your own as we transition to fall.
If you’re already planning your fall mantel, check out this post.