Friday, September 28, 2012

working on the mantle

I love seeing pictures in magazines of beautiful mantles and mine has never looked that great. Forever (and I mean like 15 years!!) I had fake topiaries on the end of the mantle (one on each end) and I decided that I hated them this year. I started really looking at magazines and I looked on pinterest trying to find a look that would work. I knew that I had to keep the mirror. Don't ask why . . .really, I think Mark wants to keep the mirror. He is really funny about some changes in the house!! Which is funny to me!! So I started working and buying and I had an idea in mind.  This was my first attempt.  (disregard the green packages - those are door prizes for the young adult group that meets at our house on Tuesday nights!!)  I sent a picture of this mantle to Laura and she said, "NOPE - you can't have the gold "E" next to the gold mirror.

So on the next Tuesday night, I asked Lydia.  Her degree is in interior design.  (not decorating mind you but I know that she is like Laura and they have a good "eye" for color and balance.)  Lydia said the same thing about the gold "E" so I moved it to the left and they both liked it better. Laura loved that they both agreed!!  (look - the presents in the basket are now blue!!)

Then a few nights later as I was sitting in my chair looking at the mantle, I thought - aha!  I need to raise up the "sticks" . . .so I added old books that we just happened to have on hand.  One of them is the Alabama history book that Mark had in some grade.  His momma had saved it and it had made its way to my house.
The lighting isn't very good in this last picture but I'm pretty happy with the mantle now.  I bought the "E" and the urn and the sticks at Hobby Lobby.  I believe those are called "bare branches" but you know me - sticks will do.  On the right, is a piece of pottery made in Wadley, AL which is a teeny tiny town where my husband's family has a farm.  The Wadley potter made that piece and it was given to us by Mrs. McKay so it is priceless!!  (just to us)  The church was given to me as a Sunday School teacher gift from someone in our class and I purchased the cross at Hobby Lobby.  If you look back up at one of the other pictures, you can see a gorgeous tile with a hand painted cross on it.  Lynn and Joe, sweet friends, gave that to me for Christmas one year and it has always had a place of honor.  On the right is a giant basket that one of my preacher friends (Dave) gave me.  It is from Africa.  I love having pieces/items/art in my house and in my office that have meaning.  The chair that you can see to the right belonged to someone in Mark's family and we've had it for 28 years and we've had it recovered twice and restuffed and refinished!  The Audobon prints that you can see reflected in the mirror were purchased on our trip to Washington, D.C. when our sweet babies were just four months old.  We brought them home on the airplane as "carry on" luggage!!  Big rolled up paintings (prints) . . .stuck between our knees.

I don't think I have achieved a pottery barn mantle but I think I have achieved a simple mantle that has meaning to me!!  Our faith is the most important thing and family and friends are next so all of those elements are combined right there on the mantle and hearth!!

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