Ever since I was a little girl I was in love with the idea of the Christmas Mantel where the stockings are hung by the chimney with care and all of that warm holiday good stuff. When I moved into my cozy little studio, one of the first things I wanted to purchase was a fake fireplace. I found an incredible one through a shabby chic vendor in San Diego. My mom and I trekked out with her minivan and got it one weekend and it was quite an adventure getting this thing home! But I am so glad and grateful to my mom that we did because it makes my house a home, especially at Christmastime!
Today I'm going to break down the special things I put on my mantel that make it special to me.
Sparkly Christmas Tree - I adore this little Christmas tree! I bought it at Target one year on clearance after Christmas but I'm sure you could make one if you really wanted! It's so sparkly and glittery that this picture doesn't do it justice! I feel like everyone need a little sparkle on their mantel!
Reindeer Candelabra - This big guy is a tealight holder (I should have lit them for the picture! Oops!) and he's one of my favorite decorations. I got him at Kohl's on clearance for 75% off 2 years ago after Christmas. He reminds me of being a kid, hearing reindeer and my love for good ol' Santa Claus.
Stocking Holder - I am so picky when it comes to stocking holders because half the time they're too light to hold a stocking down, but this guy is sturdy! My mom and I got these when a huge craft warehouse was going out of business. We snagged every one we could find for $5 each!! They're heavy duty wood and ornately carved, so beautiful! Not only do they hold my stockings, but they also add a warmth to the overall decor.
Slatkin & Co Candle - If you don't already use Slatkin & Co candles, go to Bath & Body Works and buy some right now!!! And if they're having a 2 candles for $20 sale, buy a lot! I only recommend the 3-wick 14.5 oz candles (here! The smaller ones aren't as fragrant). They are soooooooo much better than Yankee candles and make your house smell amazing!! The candle pictured here is Winter Garland and I also own Frosted Cranberry, Cranberry Pear Bellini, and Leaves. My mom burns Fresh Balsam to make her fake tree smell real and she fools everyone! My SIL (who got me into these) loves Marshmallow Fireside. Go buy these candles! Your mantel will not just look like Christmas but smell like it too. (Swear I am not endorsed by Slatkin & Co! lol).
Nativity Snowglobe - This is my favorite family heirloom I have among my Christmas decorations. My mom has been awesome enough to give me a lot of things from her collection that remind me of my childhood, but this is my favorite. It's nothing fancy and it's clouded with 20+ years of wear, but I remember this globe at Christmas for as far back as I can remember. It plays Silent Night & brings me back to being a little kid, not allowed to "play" with it. Tyler's going to try to clean it for me this year. Definitely a favorite on my mantel.
Stockings - I just bought these from Target on sale the other day. They're smaller than your average stocking, but my mantel is on the smaller side so they work better than large ones for my overall look. I have my eye on these guys from Ballard Designs, but am going to hold off until I have a family of my own before investing in anything really nice. I have two hanging: one for me, one for my boyfriend Tyler.
Nativity - My mom always taught me to have a nativity scene set for Christmas to remind us the true meaning. As an adult this means more to me than ever. Usually she has one in every room practically (or more lol!). I have this one on my fireplace shelves. It was a gift from one of my students when I used to teach elementary religious education at my old church. It's very special to me, simple but so sweet.
Pictures - These are here on my mantel all year long, but they're extra special at Christmas. Family and friends are what make this time of year so special I like to see them as constant reminder of that! They keep me focused on what really matters!
Hey, guess what? I can mark decorating for Christmas before mid-December off my 12 by 2012 list! YAY! While it's true I don't have a Christmas tree yet, I promise I'll be getting that soon!!