11 Ideas for Decorating Your Mantel For Winter

11 Ideas for Decorating Your Mantel For Winter

Interior Design
Additions and Remodels
By Dikran Seferian December 06, 2021

In houses that feature a fireplace, the mantelpiece is a go-to spot for winter decoration. It provides the ideal space for anything from garlands to candelabra. Also, a mantel’s eye-level height from the floor is such that the decor is almost always within your general field of view. This strategic positioning in addition to the adequate space of the mantel essentially sets the stage for eye-catching decor. Since the winter season calls for a transition of design elements, what better place to start with than your mantelpiece. With the plethora of designs that are trending this season — from timeless traditional decor to modern aesthetics — you’ll find many ways in which you can adorn your fireplace shelf. 

1. Festivecore Decor

You don’t need to go above and beyond with holiday decorations to maintain a festive aesthetic throughout the frosty season. A garland with minimal adornments can stay on the mantel all winter without being overly holiday-ish. Besides, it’s just a piece of foliage, right? A white handcrafted wreath in the shape of a heart can provide neutrality and style to the decor. You can’t go wrong with a couple of light-colored candles as well.

Festive Mantel Decor That Applies All Season

Festive Mantel Decor That Applies All Season

2. Copper on Wood

If your mantel features a wooden background, consider adding a slight contrast with a handful of copper ornaments. The sleek texture and shine of copper provide a cozy and contemporary aesthetic, which makes for a perfect winter design — especially when paired with wood. A small mirror sitting in one of the ornaments is a unique way to add more depth and contrast. Even if you don’t have a fireplace, you can still make do with a mantel shelf to have a cozy winter display.

Subtle Winter Decor for Your Rustic Mantel

Subtle Winter Decor for Your Rustic Mantel

3. Floral Frost

Consider a floral arrangement of white roses for a more classy look. The white blooms beautifully accentuate a winter aesthetic while the green foliage on which the noses nestle provides a pleasant contrast. To keep your floral winter decor evergreen all winter, you may need to opt for artificial roses instead of natural ones — unless you’re a fan of dried flora as an element of design. In either case, incorporating floral greenery into your mantel decor adds natural beauty regardless of the season.

Winter Mantel Designs That Exude Class

Winter Mantel Designs That Exude Class

4. Candlelit and Cozy

Winter is a time to snuggle up and feel cozy. And what better way to create a heartwarming atmosphere that soothes the senses than with a set of lit candles. A golden deer miniature among the candelabra reinforces the winter aesthetic while providing contrast. Don’t hesitate to toss in a couple of pinecones on your mantel for texture — and maybe a small evergreen in a pot to incorporate nature into the decor.

Warm and Soothing Ways to Decorate Your Mantel in Winter

Warm and Soothing Ways to Decorate Your Mantel in Winter

5. Wintery Palette

If you’re considering a winter mantel decor that resonates with the outside frost, go for a dramatically light palette. Think white, gold, beige, and silver. Anything from lanterns, candles, to snow globes can be ideal as long as it follows the color scheme. You could introduce a small piece of greenery for a subtle and non-invasive contrast. Lighting the candles will add a sense of warmth and coziness to the “frosty” decor.

Celebrating the Frost With Light-Colored Ornamentation

Celebrating the Frost With Light-Colored Ornamentation

6. Experimental Feature 

You don’t always have to follow a certain theme or palette to achieve the perfect winter mantel design. A random combination of ornaments can sometimes correspond beautifully with each other while resonating with the rainy season. Try digging into your storage spaces to see if you can find anything that may look nice on the mantel. Also, consider crafting a DIY fireplace decor such as a miniature cottage — think gingerbread house. You can't go wrong with a few decorative candle holders either. For the final touch, go for a floral piece to transform your winter mantel setup into a still-life feature.

Personalizing Your Winter Mantel With DIY Ornaments

Personalizing Your Winter Mantel With DIY Ornaments

7. Rustic Aesthetic 

Make the most out of your rustic mantel by accentuating it with elements that correspond with the overall aesthetic in terms of color and texture. Consider making use of natural materials to maintain the rustic vibes. Small wicker baskets and wicker vases can perfectly uphold the existing design style — while creating a cozy winter look. You could inject another layer of texture with little bouquets of dried foliage arranged in wicker or burlap-clad vases. Consider balancing the rugged texture with a handful of decorative candles.

How to Decorate Your Rustic Mantel for the Winter Season

How to Decorate Your Rustic Mantel for the Winter Season

8. Evergreen Extravaganza

Picture the great outdoors during winter; you may see that evergreen trees are almost synonymous with the frosty season. You can recreate a winter woodland on your mantelpiece by lining up a few potted conifers. Consider diversifying your collection with a couple of ornamental evergreens that would assimilate with their natural counterparts. A lantern candle holder in the midst of the mantel timberland provides contrast and a sense of warmth. Finally, what’s a winter forest without a reindeer? A miniature deer ornament would feel right at home among the little conifer plants.

Bringing the Great Outdoors to Your Fireplace Mantel

Bringing the Great Outdoors to Your Fireplace Mantel

9. Cottage Ambience

A cottage aesthetic goes hand in hand with the snowy season. Lumber, heirloom gadgets, and handcrafted pieces are all definitive elements of a cozy cabin theme. You can apply this homey style to your winter fireplace with a few hand-made ornaments. Consider making a DIY basket by wrapping a mason jar with a burlap and adorning it with twigs and small pinecones. A vintage clock can add timeless beauty to your winter cottage mantelpiece. To fill up the spaces in between, a very simple yet unique idea involves chopping a small branch into portions and setting them among the decor.

Rustic Decor Ideas to Design Your Winter Fireplace

Rustic Decor Ideas to Design Your Winter Fireplace

10. Vintage-Modern Mashup

Why stick to one style of design when you can have a mix of two, almost opposite, styles — especially if it translates well to a winter aesthetic. As you're combining different types of design, you will want to maintain cohesiveness for the result to be successful — following a certain palette can ensure a seamless composition. Consider adorning your winter mantel with vintage candelabra to achieve the classic look. As for a modernist injection, go for geometric-shaped candle holders.

Fancy Ways to Adorn Your Fireplace Mantel

Fancy Ways to Adorn Your Fireplace Mantel

11. Going Green

While many trees lose their foliage during the cold season, your mantel decor doesn’t have to follow suit. You can’t go wrong with lush greenery for decor that can even go beyond winter. Adorn your fireplace with a myriad of artificial foliage. For an exceptionally rich design, consider several types of flora ranging from evergreens to deciduous varieties. A set of candelabra can anchor the greenery in place while serving as a stylish addition to your winter mantelpiece design.

Mantel Decor Ideas for the Nature Lover

Mantel Decor Ideas for the Nature Lover

Alternative Spots If You Don’t Have a Mantel

Even if you don’t have a fireplace, you can easily achieve the mantel design aesthetic. Anything that resembles a mantel in its form can essentially serve as one. The console table in your entryway, for instance, can perfectly accommodate a host of fireplace ornaments such as a winter mantel garland. A contemporary solution that can serve as a mantel is a floating shelf. You can even build a faux fireplace with stone veneer underneath the shelf to replicate your desired aesthetic. A niche within a wall is another place you could adorn with mantelpiece decorations. However, if you’re aiming for both form as well as function, an electric fireplace will provide both in addition to ample space for your winter decor.

Make-Shift Mantel Ideas for Your Seasonal Decor

Make-Shift Mantel Ideas for Your Seasonal Decor

Written by
Dikran Seferian

Written by Dikran Seferian