Mantel Styling contest Update

You are welcome, lucky reader. I mean, I’m pretty much the Mother Theresa of vintage furniture. The Santa Clause of Antiques. Or maybe Brian’s holding the phone, with his finger on the “Hoarders” producer speed dial number … Regardless, I’m giving this amazing trunk away to the winner of my facebook mantel styling contest.  Read all the details on my Holiday Mantel Styling Post.

You know who else has a lot of great pieces who is awesome? This chick:


I mean, look at her stuff. Isn’t it neat? Wouldn’t you think her collections complete? NO, Ariel, it’s never complete. Keep collecting until stupid Eric buys you some real estate on Beverly and La Brea and you can finally open that store you’ve always wanted to.

I’m on day four at Disneyworld, obviously. But many of you do know my affinity for the brilliance that is “The Little Mermaid.” I wish I could say that my friends Scott, Orlando and Corbett don’t all know the lyrics of that song and don’t sing it all the time. But we do, and we do.


I am very excited about all the mantels that have been submitted already for the mantel styling contest. Some of them are pretty awesome and I’ve already gotten a few really good ideas. It’s weird that sometimes as a designer you overthink things and you don’t see really great, really simple ideas that are kind of genius. So I decided to post some of those ideas right here, right now, to try to entice even MORE of you to join and if not, at least participate by voting for your favorite.

Plus, aren’t just curious about seeing inside strangers’ houses? Don’t let your inner voyeur down. I know that THOUSANDS of people read this blog a day and only hundreds have voted. Come now. VOTE.  I’d be the worst politician. My speeches would consist of me just saying, “C’mon. Just vote guys, other people are. C’mon!” But seriously, c’mon …

Here are some good simple ideas that I’m liking:


Ornaments on top of glass bottles. I haven’t done that before and it’s a pretty great simple idea. So cute and totally makes sense. It’s like little baby heads on the top of some short/fat or tall/skinny bottles. The effect is pretty great for how inexpensive it is. (By Shauna Mallloux)

It’s just paper, cotton, a retro style garland, and a vintage frame. This mantel is extremely inexpensive and yet totally great. I love so much about it. (By Melissa Lee and her blog is RestockVintage)

I’m not sure if these are paper cutouts, but if they are, then that is a very simple way to adorn a mantel. You could make these from projections of classic silhouettes. Simple mirror, simple black and white color palette, some glitter and you are good to go. (From Doreen Cagno from Hymnes and Versus)

This one has the fabric strips as the garland and the idea of it — instead of garland — is great and I might steal it. OOh, with cute vintage fabric mixed with metallics? Done. (By Jana Roach)

Another very simple idea with a branch/mobile. The rest of the pieces look purchased, but the overall composition and color palette are cohesive and really well done. (By Alice Patterson)

There are a ton more that I love that are up (around 67 with ten days left to go), but what I loved about these were how simple and inexpensive they are for how great they look. What they all have in common are simple color palettes and really balanced composition.

Also Centsational Girl (Kate Riley) is setting the bar high:

Nice job, guys. And AGAIN, these aren’t necessarily the winners or even my favorites, just really good ideas that I wanted to share and give you people that are all scared to enter or too lazy to click a sneak peek into what the challenge is.

To read all the details on the challenge (aka what the five winners win, and HOW you win, deadlines (Dec 31st) etc.) click HERE.

And to enter or to view others and vote, click HERE. Oh and yes, in order to vote you have to “like” me on facebook. It’s just part of the promo contest policies. But it’s not that hard and you can always “unlike” me after you vote. No emails, nothing annoying, I swear.

  1. Alice

    I'm beyond flattered that you included my mantel in your sneak peek post. Just a little about the set up, I made the sequined Christmas trees with trim and styro foam forms. My brother in law actually sacrificed a small tree to make my fireplace cover. It's a plywood board painted black and with small tree rounds screwed in from behind, and my sister made that banner with a cricut machine. It's kind of hard to see from this distance, but those are chocolate kisses in the bowl and on top of the sequin trees. Thanks a million for sharing!

  2. Sunne

    I've got whozits and whatzits galore. Enough to make you and Ariel proud!

    (Also, this is getting weird. It’s one thing for you to be the only person who could style my house and I wouldn’t change a thing. And then the whole obsessions with minatures. Check. But now, Ariel – specifically that song! My 4yo knows it word for word and she’s never seen the movie…I just sing it THAT much!)

    Oh, and I own a vintage brass chest. It was my mother’s and it holds my childhood Christmas ornaments.

  3. Joseph

    I actually sang the line with the Part of Your World lyrics in my head while reading it. Love that movie!

  4. Jo

    Had such a hard time voting! Especially since I'm guessing more entries will come in. Maybe next competition there should be a cutoff for entry and the voting should start at the same time? Some of these were definitely my favorites!

  5. Oh Emily, I am so honored you picked me for a sneak peak :) I might be telling EVERYONE currently. (mine's the gold and white with the frame)

  6. Kate

    Can we vote in the promo more than once? I want to vote but if I only get 1 then I want to save it until all the entries are in.

  7. LOVE the Little Mermaid – it's my absolute favorite Disney movie! And yes, I do believe that you can never have too many treasures. In response to your contest, I'm afraid I suffer from TSM syndrome around here… that's Too Shallow Mantel Syndrome, for all of you with space to put beautiful things. I live in envy of your mantels, all year long. Emily, love your examples! Heading over to vote. Happy Holidays :)

  8. Tracy

    This made me feel SO much better about my hoarding! I just snagged a Milo Baughm brass rocker at a flea market and it and other finds are cluttering up my apartment big-time, slowly driving my husband insane. But now when he complains, I can just say "I'm like Ariel! You are stifling my dreams to become part of a world filled with re-done vintage goodness!" and perhaps burst into song? This will obviously go over amazingly well.

  9. Thanks for sharing my DIY silhouette nativity – I made it using chip board and German glass glitter and made the stable from birch branches. I actually shared the silhouette templates i used on my blog today! Thanks for hosting such a fun contest! Wishing you and yours a Very Merry Christmas!

  10. Heather P

    Hi Emily, How about continuing the design contests and have a Bar Cart contest. I am struggling with mine now and loved the post you did a few months back on styling a bar cart. Thanks for all your awesome humor.