How To Decorate A Mantel Using Vintage Accessories

A fireplace mantel is a perfect place to showcase some of your collections and vintage items. Antiques and even things considered “old junk” look especially warm and nostalgic when displayed effectively on your mantel. This is popular with rustic decorating, a shabby chic look, or when you just want to blend in some of the past with your more modern decor. I’ll show you how to decorate a mantel and get your collections out of the box.

Since a fireplace is a focal point and a cozy place to gather for warmth and conversation, it makes sense that it is a popular place to also show off vintage accessories. Not only are they conducive to the warm atmosphere but they also tend to bring about conversation.

I just went through the process of changing up one of my fireplace mantels…once again…and this time cozied it up with several vintage items that I had just purchased.

Rustic Vintage Fireplace Mantel

how to decorate a fireplace mantel

I love mixing the old with the new! The two lamps and my favorite Central Park picture have pretty much been staples on the mantel which I decorate around.

I also really like to stay with neutral tones – as you can see from my accessory choices! For a cohesive look, I actually carry these color choices through the entire fireplace decor:

rustic vintage fireplace mantel

I try to vary the colors in each grouping so that I don’t have a bunch of dark browns all clumped together and all the light colors in another group. Usually, I arrange and rearrange until I’m happy with the scattering of colors and sizes of the different objects. Texture is important to me too. I like a nice variety to really enhance a grouping.

Vintage Accessories

fireplace mantel decor

Not only was I excited to display my latest find with this metal pitcher but the color and patina were perfect against the rock. The gray metal finish was just slightly rusted in parts which matched the colorization of the fieldstone perfectly. Since the metal was such a hard element, I decided to soften it up and add another texture by filling it with dried florals (not sure what this particular one is called….a fluffy weed!)

vintage bobbin and primitive weight

This part was fun! I added texture to the top of the window by draping some of my birch branch garland over the top. As you can see from the mantel top, some of the bark flaked off while I was doing the draping which of course I noticed after taking the picture! It just adds to the rustic-ness don’t you think!

I made a candle holder from a vintage bobbin and a pine coaster – such a quick and simple re-purpose!

My father in law gave us the next item. Can you guess what it is? I thought it was an old bowling pin at first. It is actually a primitive weight for exercising!

vintage wooden shoe form

This old wooden shoe form adds some fun rustic whimsy to the mantel… least until I sell it! Then it will be back to the drawing board. But, that is half the fun of collecting! Notice the ball the shoe is leaning on and the texture it adds.

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Creating rustic styling on a budget by giving new life to old things and using the beauty that is already found in nature. Read more about me.
  1. You and I have the same taste in decor…we both love to mix things up with vintage to create an interesting and eye-catching appeal.
    I love your mantel choices! Isn’t it great to love what you do?

    1. Oh yes it is! I just love all of those vintage items! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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