Need Christmas mantel decorating ideas? See examples & get tips on the whole spectrum of farmhouse decor – from rustic to modern – all simple, elegant & easy to recreate – and budget-friendly as well! Your mantel and fireplace will look spectacular this Christmas!
Christmas Mantel: The Statement Piece of Decor
I know, that might be a lofty claim – that your mantel is the statement piece of your entire Christmas decor. Maybe I’ll concede that the Christmas tree might take center stage, but if you have a mantel, I’d venture to guess that the mantel is right behind it.
My mantel is my favorite thing to decorate – maybe because I didn’t always have one. When we bought our home, it had a fireplace (2 actually), but no mantel! Can you believe that? Our house was an estate, so we are guessing it might have been sold in an estate sale (which tells me it probably was pretty amazing, if they were able to sell it right off the wall. Sigh).
Well, my dad was kind enough to build us a new one, and last year was my first year decorating a true mantel.
(You can see the Christmas full home tour here and find Christmas mantel decor like the sign above right here in my Etsy shop!!)
But my mind spins when I think about mantels – so much potential, so many fun ideas.
How Do you Decorate a Mantel?
There is a certain finesse when it comes to decorating a mantel. I actually dedicated an entire post to how to decorate a mantel for every season, specifically in rustic style, which you can check out here. But the Cliff Notes version is that you have a large anchor piece in the middle, some height on the ends, and then a variety of sizes, textures and depths throughout the length of the mantel.
Mind you – it’s your house, you get to make your own decor rules. If you love it, leave it! But if you want the ‘pro-tips’ – that’s basically what you’re looking to do.
I love this image from Joanna Gaines – I feel like this sums it up perfectly.
What Can I Put on My Mantel for Christmas?
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Since we are talking about farmhouse Christmas mantels – and that runs the whole farmhouse spectrum from rustic to neutral to modern farmhouse – I’ll give you some suggestions. Now, some are pretty obvious – but it’s OK to think out of the box.
My first suggestion always is that if you have sentimental or personal objects, things that are meaningful to you, include those first. That is what truly makes unique decor and your house your HOME. And it will mean a lot more than just grabbing something off the shelf of Hobby Lobby.
Below are some suggestions. None are ‘must-haves’ – this is YOUR mantel! Disclaimer – I usually lean more toward classy than cute and avoid ‘cliche’ decor (Santa, elves, gnomes, etc.) when possible. There’s no judgment – it’s just personal preference! However, you do you!
As you can see, you have sooooo many options when it comes to farmhouse Christmas decor for your mantel and fireplace area.
What are the Types of Farmhouse Christmas Decor?
As I mentioned, there’s a spectrum of farmhouse decor. I’ll briefly run through a description of each, but to be honest, there’s a lot of overlap and I mix in all of them just about all the time. Again – do what you love.
Generally, farmhouse decor (different than country) has rustic on one end of the spectrum >> farmhouse (usually more neutral) in the middle >> modern farmhouse on the other end. It’s all farmhouse, so pick and choose what attracts you!
In the list of farmhouse Christmas mantel decor ideas, it runs through that spectrum in that order: rustic, farmhouse neutral, modern.
Rustic Farmhouse Christmas Mantel Decor
When you think of rustic Christmas decor, it’s along the lines of vintage and nostalgic styles. It has a cozy feeling, a throwback to simpler, better days. Old-fashioned. Natural elements – greens, wood, and for Christmas, even dried oranges and berries.
Rustic decor has that imperfect, distressed, flawed feeling to give an air of realness. You’ll see decor with reclaimed wood, unfinished surfaces, natural fibers, and textures.
For your mantel, you might include vintage stockings, dried orange garland, vintage candlesticks, and distressed Christmas signs.
Farmhouse and Neutral Christmas Mantel Decor
When you think of neutral farmhouse decor, it has a little bit of a cleaner, newer feel. It doesn’t feel as old-fashioned or vintage as rustic, but it does have a sense of an updated version of nostalgia.
It is a little less imperfect than rustic and a little more polished. It usually has a more muted color scheme, staying with those neutrals – greys, whites, browns, blacks. However, it’s not as “perfect” as modern farmhouse. It truly is a middle ground.
For your mantel, you might include a large farmhouse mantel sign, knit stockings with wood tags, lots of greens, beaded garland, wood snowflakes, or reindeer.
Modern Farmhouse Christmas Mantel Decor
In these examples, you’ll see much cleaner lines, more minimalistic choices. In modern farmhouse, there’s more of a sleekness, a classiness. It might seem a little colder compared to rustic farmhouse, more polished and perfect. Maybe “a little more staged and less living in feeling.” Sometimes, to warm up a modern farmhouse look, some boho elements might be added in instead of rustic elements.
For your mantel, you might want to include a mirror as a statement centerpiece, fur-lined stockings, garland mixed with shiny steel-colored ornaments, tall black candlesticks, sparkly gold evergreen trees.
How Do You Decorate the Hearth/Bottom of the Fireplace for Christmas?
Yes, we are talking about mantels – but don’t forget about the bottom area! That definitely needs to be put on display, too!
Some cozy items you can put on the bottom of your fireplace are: woven baskets with throw blankets and neutral throw pillows (or even Christmas pillows), metal buckets or pails with birch branches, mini evergreen trees, tall Christmas decor like chunky pillar candle holders. I even like to wrap gifts in a stylish way (30 ideas right here!) and use it as decor on the bottom of my fireplace.
Ideally, odd-numbered vignettes work best – 3s are ideal – so, 3 items on the right side, 3 on the left! Be sure to keep it balanced and mix a variety of sizes and textures!
Where Do I get Budget-Friendly Farmhouse Christmas Mantel Decor?
I totally understand being on a budget! In fact, I created an entire post on how to decorate your home for Christmas without spending a lot of money.
Farmhouse is so popular these days, and many discount stores carry some really beautiful pieces! My favorite stores to find Christmas decor are Hobby Lobby, Walmart, Target (Dollar Section – 100%), Big Lots, TJ Maxx, Marshalls, Home Goods. You can even find some great pieces at Dollar General. And of course, the most convenient shopping in the world – Amazon.
Thrift stores as well as yard sales are also amazing places to get some Christmas decor – you can definitely upcycle and repurpose some amazing bargain items!
30 Farmhouse Style Christmas Fireplaces & Mantel Ideas
Ok – let’s get on to the main event! As you scroll through these inspirational pictures, there’s a simple order. I’ve started with the more rustic photos first, then neutral farmhouse (more or less), and ended with modern farmhouse. There’s some overlap as it’s not a perfect science, but I think you’ll catch on to the progressions real easily!
All the More Christmas Inspo
This year, I created a post with ALL of my Christmas content in one place! It’s the ultimate guide that is updated as soon as I create a new post, so feel free to check it out! It has home decor ideas, crafts, DIY, gift guides and homemade gift ideas, Christmas cookie and treat recipes, kid activities… everything for Christmas!
Since we are about home decor in this post, I’ll share a few highlights here:
30 Farmhouse Christmas DIY Projects for the Home: This post is my #1 Christmas post every year!
30 Farmhouse Decorating Ideas for the Coziest Christmas Ever!: Ideas for the entire home!
30+ Best Farmhouse Christmas Porches on Instagram (+ Pro-Decorating Tips!): Don’t forget about the outdoors! First impressions are everything!
30 Creative Ways to Display Christmas Cards: Even Christmas cards can count as decor!
I’d love to see what you come up with for your Christmas mantel! Please leave a comment on Pinterest or tag me on Instagram @100affections!
Thoughts? I’d love to hear them! Leave a comment below!