How to Create an Easy Valentine’s Day Mantel

I’ll be the first to admit that I like the idea of decorating my home for each season. I have Pinterest Boards called Winter Wonderland, Happy Heart’s Day, Spring Has Sprung, Fabulous Fall, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, and more, each of which includes decorating ideas for that season.

But let me emphasize again, I like the idea of these cute decorations, but not so much the practicality. I guess the bottom line is that I’m kind of lazy! With the exception of Christmas, I don’t always have the patience to take things down, pack them up, find the next season’s decorations, find places for them, arrange them, re-arrange them, and re-arrange them again until they’re perfect.

So, how do I balance my tendency toward inaction with my love of holiday décor? I decorate my mantel! What I love about decorating my mantel is that it’s a finite space, it dresses up the living room without going all-out, and it usually ends up looking cute no matter what I do. I always do fall and Christmas mantles, and I’ve done Valentine’s Day, Easter, spring, and summer mantels in years past.

How to Create an Easy Valentine's Day Mantel

Here’s my advice if you’d like to dress up your mantel!

Keep it simple.

You don’t have to have elaborate decorations or spend a ton of money to have a fun seasonal mantel. I often like to include paper banners, vases I already have, leaves from outside, or other simple items to jazz up my mantel.

Don’t invest a lot of money.

I use cute scrapbooking paper & washi tape. Both of these options are inexpensive but can really make a visual impact. I love Target’s Bullseye’s Playground (moment of honesty: I totally just had to look that up because I always and forever will call it the Dollar Spot!). They switch things out seasonally, and you can get darling things for just a few dollars. I also like to use seasonal things like pumpkins, apples, dried ears of corn, pine branches, etc.

Re-use things for different seasons!

I have a red vase that shows up for both Christmas and Valentine’s Day. I have a lantern that I can change up to suit any season. Candles are versatile, especially white ones. Find things you can easily change up for several seasons. (See the photo below for an example of a clear, tall, glass vase that I use in most of my mantel arrangements. Note the two different uses of the lantern as well.)

Aim for cute, not perfect.

Do I have mantels with the perfect statement pieces, arranged with precision, that are just waiting for Joanna Gaines to be wowed? Hardly! But do my holiday mantels inject a bit of the season into our home, look cute, and make me happy? Yep, they sure do!

How to Create an Easy Valentine's Day Mantel

What do I like to include almost every season?

  • Candy from the season in a glass jar, vase, or around a candle in a lantern
  • Glassware – sometimes by itself, sometimes with something in it
  • A calendar page with a cute seasonal sticker on it
  • Clothespins for hanging banners

How to Create an Easy Valentine's Day Mantel

In this super-simple mantel I put together last year, I found the vase, mailbox, and calendar in the Dollar Spot. I used stickers and washi tape on a piece of cardstock (all of which I had on hand) to make the simple {love} sign. For the banner, I took 4×6 pieces of scrapbooking paper in coordinating prints and cut the banner shape into the bottom. (I will be using cute clothespins this year!) I put the February calendar page on the mini clipboard, adding a heart sticker to the 14th.

How to Create an Easy Valentine's Day Mantel

Just a couple of parting things to think about when putting together your mantel:

  • An odd number of items tends to look best on my mantel.
  • Try to vary the height of your items. You can stack books or gift-wrapped small boxes, or use glassware like a bowl turned upside down to give an element a boost in height!
  • Generally speaking, less is more. Don’t try to cram too many things onto your mantel.

If you put together a mantel to celebrate the season of red, hearts, and love, head on over to our Facebook page and post a picture of your {simple} masterpiece!


 

Sara is a NW Iowa native who moved across the state to become a Hawkeye! After her time at the U of I, she left for optometry school and residency before coming home to Iowa to start her “adult” life in Coralville. She was in clinical practice for 5 years before trying her hand at the research side of eye care, working on clinical trials in the pharma/biotech industry. Sara is a wife, mom to a 5-year-old boy, and step-mom to four teenagers! Because her son was born at 25 weeks and had a lengthy NICU stay, Sara is passionate about all things related to prematurity, especially parent support in the NICU. She loves connecting with fellow NICU moms, both online and in person. Sara also enjoys spending time with friends and extended family, reading, scrapbooking, organizing, knitting, travel, keeping up with tech trends, finding new wines to enjoy, honing her photography skills, and serving on the Family Advisory Council for UI Children’s Hospital. She’s a consultant for Jamberry Nails, too, which lets her dabble in her creative side.

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