Green Living

Christmas Mantle 2019

It’s beginning to look a little like Christmas around here.  No tree yet, but my Christmas Mantle 2019 is finished.  This year I was a little bogged down with all the Christmas decor in retail stores since this summer.  I say “bay, humbug” to buying any holiday decor, that is, outside of replacing my last few strands of non LED lights with LED lights.

First, you will need to collect branches from your yard or surrounding area. I love cypress and juniper versus pine, not as messy and easier to work with.  But you could really can do this with so many different types of branches.  See my natural holiday decor from last season here, where I used magnolia and holly branches.

Second, choose a plastic container for the base.  I chose 2 long narrow bins because I was making this for my mantle, but you could use round or even square bins for a centerpiece.   These plastic bins actually have another purpose, they are the bins for my window box in the summer.  Then add florist foam inside the container that will help position the branches.  Because my plastic bins were so narrow and the branches fairly large, they kept falling over.  To stabilize the bins, I added one brick in each bin near the center.

Continue adding branches to create the look you are going for.  My goal was to create a modern but woodsy look.  I found it easier to move the containers into place on the mantle and then continue filling them with branches.  Then I added some water to prevent the branches from drying out and added lights and pinecones.  You could add enough branches to the containers to completely hide them, but I had some old barn wood that I thought would look really nice as a faux cover / box around the sides of the box.  These are just two pieces of wood placed in front of the bins on the mantle.

To complete the “woodsy” look, I added the winter gnomes I picked up in Cologne, Germany last year.


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