Category Archives: Decorating@Nibs- Series Of Fireplace Mantels

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

Christmas has come and gone…so why am I posting a holiday mantel display? As I was going through things in our basement (initial packing for our move) I came across these ornaments. And I just had to do a quick arrangement for my series before putting them in a box.

Fireplace Mantel #25- Christmas Village

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Process-

1. Use Ikea fabrics- wood plank (for the walls) and logs (for the firebox). The mantel remains Benjamin Moore’s China White.

2. On the mantel- Collection of handmade small scale homes and barns, HO scale figures/deer, diorama trees, folk art wooden hearts/stars garland, and natural wreath with craft store burlap ribbon.

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(Photos & Styling- Martha Browne)

Related Nibs post-

Fireplace Mantel #23- A Swedish Holiday

Fireplace Mantel #14- Retro Christmas

Fireplace Mantel #10- Christmas Portrait

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

The design term ‘juxtaposition’ has been used for years. But in all honesty what exactly does it mean? Juxtaposition is defined as putting things together (purposely placing them side by side) in order to create an interesting (and fun) contrast.

Fireplace Mantel #24- Juxtaposition

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Process-

1. This display starts with leaf patterned walls that complements the classic fireplace mantel painted Benjamin Moore China White.

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2. On the mantel- Three framed prints done in felt-tip markers by photographer William Eggleston 2009, assorted small scale chairs, Ikea black clip-on lights, craft paints, solar powdered bulb/toy and a book.

(Photos & Styling- Martha Browne)

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Fireplace Mantel #23- A Swedish Holiday

Fireplace Mantel #22- Fall’s Bounty

Fireplace Mantel #21- Mister Moore

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

Other countries can provide such wonderful inspiration for interiors. I loved the idea of doing a mantel design with a nod towards Sweden. My immediate thought was of Carl Larsson and the home he and his wife Karin created. Of course, I always like to mix in things to make it my own. And I encourage you to do the same. :)

Fireplace Mantel #23- A Swedish Holiday

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Process-

1. Prime/paint walls Benjamin Moore Fresh Peach #060.

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2. Prime/paint baseboard and fireplace mantel Benjamin Moore China White.

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3. Prime/paint detail molding Benjamin Moore green #434.

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4. On the mantel- Framed print c. 1700s, old photo, brass candlesticks with candles, fresh tulips in a glass vase and lots of garden bulbs.

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5. Other- Antique candle holders, framed botanical prints, Steiff teddy bear, wooden shoes (from Margot), family heirloom table, vintage cross stitch tablecloth, D.I.Y. chair cover, gingerbread cookies with checked ribbon, rug and log print fabric (check Ikea for availability).

(Photos & Styling- © 2014 Martha Browne)

Related Nibs posts-

Fireplace Mantel #22- Fall’s Bounty

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

I enjoyed decorating a friend’s simple antique mantel sixteen different ways that I went hunting for one like it for myself. After months of searching, I came across a mantel that was perfect for my new series on color. Now let’s have some fun and decorate!

Fireplace Mantel #22- Fall’s Bounty

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I wanted this mantel to celebrate Fall and Thanksgiving without being too predictable. So I skipped the bright orange pumpkins, black paper crows and jars of candy corn.

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Instead, inspiration came from rural French decor with a few added surprises of my own.

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Process-

1. Prime and paint walls/trim & moulding warm beige (custom mix).

2. Prime and paint mantel dark brown (custom mix).

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3. On the mantel- Two wheat stacks, garden sickle, wire script ‘merci’, mercury glass pumpkin, antique bottles with corks, pottery, wooden spatula, vintage faux fruit, ink drawing c. 1900, clay figure and old books.

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4. Other- Linen cloth frill, printed log fabric (check Ikea for availability), country chair, hand carved walking stick, string of old keys and clay plate.

(Photos & Styling © 2014 Martha Browne)

My Imaginary Magazine Cover- UK Country Living

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I couldn’t resist using an outtake image from my fireplace mantel series for an imaginary magazine cover of UK ‘Country Living.’

(Photo- © 2014 Martha Browne)

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Imaginary Magazine Covers

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

Over the years, I’ve collected quite a few painted portraits with no idea who the subjects are. They ended up with imaginary names. A few months ago, some friends and I went to a local estate sale. I came home with a wooden chair, two brass candle stick holders and yes… another portrait. This dapper fellow was promptly named Mr. Moore.

Fireplace Mantel #21- Mister Moore

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Process-

1. Cover walls with old drop cloths (detail below right). I suggest using a heavy-duty stapler for this job. Start at the ceiling and work down to the baseboard. Cut any extra fabric off. Side note- You could try stapling the drop cloths at the ceiling and just let them hang loose to the floor.

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2. Prime and paint base molding Benjamin Moore Jackson Tan HC-46 (detail above left).

3. Prime and paint mantel Benjamin Moore English Ochre CW-290 (detail above center).

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4. Mantel Accessories- My portrait of Mister Moore takes center stage. To make it even more interesting, I flipped him upside down. Stacks of old books, cigar box, dried bittersweet, glass vase with daylilies, deer antlers and antique nails are with it.

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5. Other- Old cloth-covered cord pendant light, wire glove dryer, vintage folding carpenter’s ruler, oak chair with leather seat c. 1900 and kilm loom pillow.

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(Photos & Styling- © 2014 Martha Browne)

Decorating@Nibs- More Fireplace Mantels

For this latest mantel idea, I decided to go with a dark navy blue. It’s the perfect backdrop color to showcase a carefully edited grouping of collectibles.

Fireplace Mantel #20- Going Dark

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Process-

1. The fireplace mantel, walls and trim all got the same treatment-  a base coat of black (Benjamin Moore PM) and a finished coat of navy blue (custom mix). Instead of a roller, I used a brush. Yes…it does take longer, but the results are so much better. It allows for texture and blending of colors that you just can’t get with a roller.

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2. Several sheets of blue and white delft tile wrapping paper (similar) covers the firebox.

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3. Mantel Accessories- Less is definitely more. An antique frame with an old photo taped in the center hangs above the mantel. The shelf holds two vintage teapots (the red one is from Hall China c. 1940 and the other from Burleigh), a blue/white planter and a wooden lamp base made by my father. Punches of red makes the display eye-catching.

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4. Other- Fireplace tools with brass handles and a stump painted red.

(Photos & Styling- © 2014 Martha Browne)

Related Nibs posts-

Fireplace Mantels- #17 Colorful Colonial #18 A Botany Lesson  and #19 A Sewing Nook

Sixteen Fireplace Mantels