In past years I didn’t really decorate for autumn. I would go straight to Halloween.
Something about living in a place that has a very defined fall season made me all about it!
Now I buy all the pumpkin, gourds and random, lumpy squash and mums.
Buying all that seasonal produce can get costly, so I save where I can.
Check out my Affordable Fall Mantel Ideas to see where I save.
Creating our DIY mantel is still one of my favorite projects. When we were renovating our fireplace I knew that I wanted to add a mantle so that we could hang our Christmas stockings and so that I could decorate for all seasons!
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Affordable Fall Mantel Ideas
Use vintage books to prop fall decorations.
I don’t make a point of seeking out vintage or antique books but I do pick them up when I come across them.
I’ve actually found some in our neighborhood Little Libraries, which is great! Do you have Little Libraries in your neighborhood? They are such a nice resource to find books for free.
The colors of vintage books lend well to decorating. For this mantel I chose books with green covers to tie into the vintage painting and fabric that I included.
Incorporate dried flowers into your fireplace mantel decor.
Dried yarrow from our yard and dried dahlias from an old bouquet fit perfectly in vintage brass and wood vases.
Dried flowers in fall colors like deep yellows, oranges, and reds area festive choice. But really any color can work.
Hang a basket above your mantel.
This basket would normally hang on our front door, but it’s always fun to try things in different places.
The dried artichokes (I don’t actually know what they are!) came from a clearance section in a supermarket floral section.
Bundles of wheat, like mums, are a staple fall item.
Layer your second hand pieces.
Our shed is filled with yard tools, kid toys and project finds. I have old pharmacy crates that I found in our basement and some old windows.
One of the old windows is painted a deep, brick red and has lead glass. Since I haven’t got around to using the old windows in a projects, I use them to decorate.
An interesting old window can take the place of a mirror. Then layer some architectural salvage, like decorative trims.
Another item I found in our basement is the barrel shown in the picture. I flipped it over to act as a stand for the vase, which is actually an old pickle jar.
Fill mason jars with acorns.
Acorns make a super cute vase filler. Don’t these look so authentic? The tops of these faux acorns appear to be real and the bottoms look fake. But together, they are really convincing.
My kids and I scooped up a ton of pine cones while out on a walk. It was a fun game for them to spot a good one then run it over to me.
One of my blogging mentors wrote a really funny post about the dangers of using real foraged goods in your home decorate. It gave me a chuckle because I could totally relate!
Shop Affordable Fall Mantel Ideas
A lot of the items I use are foraged or second hand, but I found some links that do the trick. Click on the photos below to shop my fall decor finds.