A home can look so bare and empty after the Christmas decorations are taken down and packed away. Usually I automatically leap to the typical, expected Valentine's decorations.This year I felt like I needed a change, but what? Rather than go out and buy new decorations, I decided to rummage around the house and see what I have that I could use to decorate the fireplace mantel for the remainder of the winter.
When decorating for Christmas this past year, I had used a weathered old broken half-door that I had pulled off my wood pile outside. I brushed it off and propped it up on the mantel. I added a wreath, a couple of tall candle sticks, some evergreens and lights. It made for a simple, rustic mantel display. When I took down the greens after Christmas, I decided to see how I could re-use the door and the candlesticks. (Tip: We keep a pile of wood outside to weather for craft and decorating purposes. Any boards will do, but old fencing, shelving, doors or windows that have some detailing really have added character, such as the hinges and key hole on this door.)
For a door hanging, I snatched a twiggy star that I use as a tree topper on one of my primitive Christmas trees and added a piece of red berry garland.
I retrieved another piece of garland that I've had for years. I've used it in a number of ways: draped over a cabinet door or wrapped around a candle jar. This time I just stretched it across the mantel. I ran down to my Potting Shed and nabbed an antique wooden pulley to lean against the door. I like how these rustic pieces are working together.
I captured some little snowmen inside some antique mason jars. I replaced the candles on top of the candlesticks with some pine cones and scattered a few more among the garland.
A large apothecary jar normally sits on my laundry room counter filled with clothespins. Every once in a while I snag it for other uses. For Christmas, I filled it with shiny red tree ornaments and set it on my kitchen shelf. This time, I placed some white fluffy cotton on the bottom and added an antique model train house. The string of white lights warm up the display and reflect on the glass jars, casting a sparkling glimmer on the snowy figures.
I like how it turned out. It has a tiny hint of red color. Where it's lacking in color, it makes up for in texture. It didn't cost me anything; I just re-used what I've had for years. It's simple and rustic and sets a mood. I think it will do!
I especially like it when there are logs burning in the fireplace!