Useful Fireplace Mantel Design You’ll Love

Fireplace Mantel Design

A mantel is more than just a flat surface for hanging wall decor. It’s also fair game for displaying shelves of decor and collections of collectibles.

Snag a large mirror and mount it on your mantel to turn it into a decorative accent wall. Fill the frame with fresh greenery or flowers for a seasonal look.

1. A Mirror

A mirror is an essential part of any mantel and can be used to visually enlarge your space. When choosing a mirror for your mantel, consider the overall look you want to create. A square or rectangular shape works well for a classic and balanced look, while rounded styles can provide a softer touch to your decor. Also, keep in mind that the mirror should be proportional to the size of the fireplace and the available wall space to avoid looking overcrowded or overwhelming your design.

The color and finish of your mirror can also affect the way it looks in your space. Silver and gold mirrors can instantly add a sophisticated touch to your room, while dark wood finishes can be more understated and elegant. When considering the color of your frame, make sure it’s a complement to the color of the fireplace surround, the surrounding walls, and other elements in your space.

A mirrored gallery is a great way to display your favorite art and other decorative objects. Choose a variety of frames to create a balanced yet eye-catching vignette. If you’re using multiple frames, try to stick with odd numbers rather than even ones. Odd numbers help create a more dynamic look and are easier on the eyes than even numbers.

If a full gallery isn’t your style, filling your mantel with framed photos can be an easy and effective alternative. Displaying photos of memorable family moments can give your space a personal touch and make it feel cozy and inviting. You can even frame antique maps to give your mantel a unique and sophisticated touch. For a more formal look, try arranging the photos in a grid pattern like this one from casadevalentina.

2. Books

Stack books on your fireplace mantel for a cozy feel. This is a great idea if you have a lot of books and want to display them. You can also place vases or other decorative items among the books for more visual interest. Just make sure the height isn’t too high or you may risk bumping into them while relaxing in front of the fireplace.

Frame an antique map to add some texture to your wood mantel design. This is a great option for homeowners with a love of history or a passion for a particular region of the world. Vary the frame types and sizes to create a show-stopping display.

A fireplace mantel is like an open canvas that you can use to showcase your creativity and taste. You can be as creative or simple as you desire, and you can even change the decor per season to keep your home fresh.

This minimalist mantel by Sarah Jane Interiors is the perfect way to decorate a mantel without taking up too much space. The combination of a shabby mirror, an old door panel, and dried branches is very peaceful. Just make sure to choose the right color scheme and style of the decorations so that it all goes together.

If you’re a fan of the outdoors, you can use your mantel to celebrate the changing seasons. This mantel from Live Oak Nest is a great example of how to incorporate a variety of natural elements into one cohesive look. It’s easy to achieve this look by adding different colors and textures of plants, such as leafy greens, flowers, and branches.

You can also accentuate the beauty of your home with a unique set of shelves or a floating mantel. Floating shelves are ideal for modern homes, while classic wood mantels are great for traditional spaces. You can also install sliding barn doors on the mantel to hide the TV and reveal the fireplace, as shown here.

3. A Collection of Collectibles

The fireplace is a natural focal point that provides a perfect spot to show off favorite decor pieces. You don’t need an expert eye to decorate your mantel with a mix of beautiful accessories, but the key is to think about how to group and arrange them in a way that’s cohesive. A symmetrical arrangement (as shown here) is a simple but effective approach. Place one large object in the center of your mantel and then surround it with pairs of similar items. Depending on the size of your objects, you may need to add more items to fill out your vignette.

If you have a lot of different collectibles, try grouping them in themes like color or texture to create a coherent look on your mantel. For example, this gorgeous stacked display by Instagrammer @miafelce uses colorful baby shower balloons as vases. The result is both whimsical and jaw-dropping.

A floaty arrangement of flower-filled vases is a beautiful and easy-to-repeat mantel decor idea. If you want a longer-lasting arrangement, consider using flower branches or dried bouquets instead.

Another way to elevate a simple mantel is to use the space as a showcase for a collection of art prints and framed photographs. This look is especially appropriate for contemporary rooms, but it can also be beautiful in traditional homes.

Flat-panel TVs often find a home above fireplaces, but they can detract from the overall look of your mantel. Reclaim your mantel’s appearance by recessing the flat screen into the wall behind it, cladding the box with beaded board and installing bifold doors to hide the opening. A custom design like this can transform your room into a true entertainment center.

4. A Clock

For a little extra functionality to your mantel design, add a clock. Not only does it allow you to quickly check the time, but it also acts as a focal point and adds some visual interest to your display. Make sure to use a clock that is the right size for your space and coordinates well with the rest of your decor, like this gorgeous antique-style wall clock from hgtv.

For those who don’t want to pound nails into their walls or simply don’t have enough room for a gallery wall, the fireplace mantel is a great place to style and display your favorite framed artworks. Vary the sizes of the frames for a balanced look and to create more visual intrigue. Just be careful not to overcrowd your mantel, as this can create a cluttered and unorganized look. If possible, try to keep your arrangement in odd numbers of items rather than even ones, as this usually looks more natural and less staged.

Ceramics are a beautiful addition to any home, but often have trouble finding a good home on the wall. A mantel is a perfect place to showcase this lovely ceramics and help them stand out from the crowd. Using a similar color palette as the background of your vignette can create a more cohesive look, and adding a larger vase in front of the smaller ones helps to frame them both for maximum impact.

Don’t be afraid to work greenery into your mantel design, as this can instantly freshen up your living space. If you don’t have any planters to fill, opt for a row of vases of different shapes and sizes instead. As seen on beckdesignblog, this is a simple and stylish way to highlight your collection.

5. A Collection of Artwork

A fireplace mantel is an ideal spot to showcase a cherished piece of art. Whether you opt for an oversized painting or a series of stunning candlesticks, the key is to balance your anchor item with coordinating decor pieces. Depending on your surround and the structural elements flanking it, this may mean keeping things minimal or adding a striking pop of color.

When displaying your collection, School of Decorating recommends following the rules of symmetry for a visually pleasing arrangement. “Start with a large item and then pair it with items of similar proportions and scale,” the blog suggests. In this vignette, the large sculptural driftwood serves as the centerpiece and two matching terra-cotta planters create a balanced composition.

If you’re hesitant to commit to a full gallery wall, try arranging your collection into an “O” shape. “This keeps the space looking clean and streamlined,” the blog notes. “You can also play around with the positioning of the items—try putting a short round shape on one end and a tall rectangular shape on the other.”

Displaying your favorite pottery on your mantel is a classic choice. For a cohesive look, arrange your pieces in groups of three or five. “This allows for visual movement and makes it easier to take in the entire vignette,” notes lovecreatecelebrate.

If your walls are neutral, a pop of color on the mantel can instantly boost the room’s energy. Opt for a coordinating shade that works well with nearby accents, like these bold sconces, to create a unified design. Or, go big and paint your mantel a bright color that’s sure to turn heads. This dramatic accent is the perfect complement to a neutral shiplap fireplace surround and can be easily swapped out as your style evolves.