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Fall Mantel + Tablescape Tutorial

It recently came to our attention that some of you have really loved the simple tutorials that we've done as they feel easy enough to accomplish without needing alllll the design talent in the world. So today, as autumn is finally falling upon us, we decided to share how we created a cute fall mantel and a fall tablescape.

The Mantel:

Step 1. Put a punkin on the mantle.

All done!

Psych. This is the before. (Ya know... how "many people" add a little fall vibe by plopping a singleton on the mantel and calling it a day.)

Mantel Before

Anyone who's been around me long enough knows a singleton of anything isn't gonna cut it. So let's make this a bit more textured, shall we?

What you'll need:

  • Pumpkins: Various shapes, sizes, colors, and textures. Hang tight... you'll see.

  • Gourds: Although we don't have any shown on the mantel, don't shy away from a good ol' fashioned gourd moment. Go for it!

  • Corn. Who doesn't love a little dried corn to make you feel all harvesty. (I know. I'm not reinventing the fall wheel over here. These are pretty straight forward fall collection supplies!)

  • Candlesticks. Hell, if you have any already up there then just keep them (gold, black, chunky wood... all work well with this vibe!)

  • Greenery. I know, I know. Fall is supposed to be all about the leaves turning colors but I pretty much always love some greenery on the scene. If you prefer leaves that have "turned" in the more golden, red palette, that works too!

  • Various textures like terracotta vases, a little metal, and some wood create plenty of depth.

Mantel After

Admittedly I have been curating a little collection of pumpkins for some years now from places like Target, Home Goods, and Michaels. Obviously they may not sell the exact same ones now, but pumpkins and gourds are never in short supply. I also love integrating real items. (After many years of doing just that I started collecting things that I could actually keep and reuse, so no judgement here on the faux fall scene). Some of these are glass, others are knitted, some are plastic, metal, or wood. The corn shown here is actually real and dried which I grabbed at a local farm a few years back.

"Ok... so I got a shit ton of pumpkins.. but they don't look like yours when I line them up. What am I doing wrong?"

You want to focus on different sizes, textures, and colors. Nothing should ever be exactly the same. (Ok fine. I'm sure I'll find a day that I'll want more symmetry, so I know better than to say "never", but for the look we are going for today, we are aiming for many different variations in size, shape, color, and texture.)

Also note: depending on the size of your mantel, you'll want to stay within the bounds of it's depth. Meaning let's not put a 20 lb pumpkin on an 8" mantel and wonder why it isn't working, mkay?!

Ok so what do I do then?

  1. I like to start with some height on the ends to anchor the space. In this case I have 3 candlesticks of varying heights on one end and some greenery on the other. Looking back, I would probably stack a few books under the vase to give it even a bit more height.

  2. Next, start layering in the pumpkins. Notice how some of them are upright, some are leaning on another buddy for a lil' tilt. None are exactly the same or too repetitious in their positioning. It takes some practice, but play with it... I've never done it the exact same way twice!

  3. Then, I layer in the corn. I just found little gaps and different angles where I could place them.

  4. Finally, I add any final accessories. Here I used the small terracotta vase with a eucalyptus stem and some wood beaded garland on the end for a different texture.

This literally took only a few minutes and completely changed the mood for some cool crisp days ahead!

The Tablescape:

Next up was the table. Using the same format, we wanted some height, some texture, some greenery, and of course some pumpkins.

Here we started with our blank slate of a table:

Bare table before

Then we added a table runner. *Quick hack*.... when you have a longer table and can't get your hands on a long enough runner in time: just use 2 runners and fold them so that they create a seam down the center. Obviously if you had the time you could sew 2 together, or even use hemming tape to connect them quickly, but as I said: if you are short on time then this little trick works just fine for cases where there will be enough "stuff" in the center to hide it!

Table with two folded runners

Next up, I started with some height by using a vase of fallish greenery that I created and then a smaller vase just beside it for some height variation. (Notice the blues in the vases. I still like using tones that might be less expected. Not everything has to be straight up fall for it to translate well!) Also notice that I didn't put the vase(s) in the very center of the table. It is offset to the side to change things up a bit!

Then I added some staple pieces:

  1. "A bowl of fall": Some pine cones, small pumpkins and a few buds of cotton.

  2. A larger glass pumpkin that I didn't want to overwhelm the mantel (remember that thing about keeping within the depth of the mantel?)

  3. A stack of antique books

Next, I filled in with some smaller pumpkins of varying heights working my way around the table.

And finally. a fall scented candle (this one is adorable and smells amazingggg)

And that's that! Again, didn't take long and makes me so ready for fall y'all!


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