After-Christmas Winter Mantel and Living Room
This is the story of the living room that refused to be lonely after Christmas.
You know after the twinkly Christmas lights and red ribbons and jolly little stockings come down? There’s the feeling. The emptiness. And not just emptiness but also that gloom that always seems to creep in smack dab after January 1st.
Everything outside is just gray. And the sun only shines for a tiny smidgen of the day. And I start thinking the idea of moving to Florida sounds pretty brilliant.
This year, that gloom was NOT going to be in our living room.
Today, I teamed up with my blogger friend Taryn from Design, Dining, and Diapers to share a bit of our winter mantels and living rooms. If you’re visiting from Kelly Elko’s home, welcome!
I learned my no-decorating lesson last year. January 2016, I was sleepy and moody and a total couch potato because I hardly decorated a lick once we hauled our Christmas tree away.
This year, I was on a mission. Save the winter decor! Robert took some convincing. I’d rescue a strand of flocked garland out of our storage bins and he’d say, “Babe. That’s Christmas stuff.” If there’s a fine line between just decorating for winter and hanging your icicle lights on your front porch until May, I might have crossed it.
(Who makes these rules that constitutes the definitive difference between Christmas and winter decor anyway?)
But whatever. This living room is HAPPY!
And what matters more is our family seems happier already in comparison to last year’s doom and gloom with the no-decor-in-sight. It’s just further proof to me that our surroundings matter so much more than we realize.
Maybe January is the unsung hero of the year. December gets a lot of attention, but January? Meh.
On the surface, yeah. Maybe it’s about dieting and shoveling driveways and organizing crammed closets and scrubbing floors that seriously you know haven’t seen a mop since last winter.
But there’s something about it that’s kind of magical.
It’s that time of year when hope overflows. This is the year I’m going to take care of myself. This is the year that I’m going to find balance. This is the year that I’m going to do something big. Really big.
I think that’s pretty poetic, don’t you? Because if we treated every month like January, maybe we could do even more great things. HUGE things. The ones that only dreams are made of.
Maybe seizing all of those big goals starts with a little decor at home where you can find your refuge and be inspired to go out and conquer the world.
And truly. It doesn’t have to take spending a truck full of money to make it that way.
Sometimes a cheap thrift store mirror can become brand new with a little bit of paint…
Sometimes old dome clocks from yard sales can become fancy French cloches…
That Christmas decor marked down to 80% off on the end-of-season clearance aisle can still have a lot more life. ..
And if you can’t afford furniture in the retail stores, sometimes a $50 Craigslist coffee table and a secondhand bookcase with a fresh coat of paint is all you need…
In the end, maybe you’ll learn a skill or two- how to sew, how to build, how to put your own personal stamp in your home that no amount of money could ever buy. Because you and your family are reflected in every brush stroke and every seam.
In the midst of my rescuing garland and greenery from our storage bins, that rescue mission seemed to continue in the rest of our house. I repurposed so many items we already had and it reminded me of my and Robert’s earlier days when we had hardly anything at all and were just scraping by.
Sometimes I think it’s when we have to tighten our purse strings that we realize what we already do have. When we have no other choice but to reuse and remake, maybe that’s where the absolute best ideas and most beautiful creativity can happen.
A pair of thrifted shelf brackets can suddenly become a pretty set of bookends.
And an old wooden shelf can transform into a vintage style crate. It just takes a little hard work, a little determination, and a little time to find beauty in the ordinary.
Whatever your January looks like, I hope it’s full of optimism. And that you can see so much of the potential around you and in yourself. 2017 is going to be a GREAT year. I know it.
Since y’all sometimes ask, here are some of the sources I used in our living room alongside the thrifted stuff. Most of the items I already owned or I bought on a major sale along with a coupon.
Sources: (Affiliate links are provided below.)
- Cedar garland
- Snowy wreath
- Wooden candle holders
- Black lanterns (large and small)
- Card catalog coffee table (similar)
- Woven tray
- Paperwhite flowers
- Fillable glass lamp
- Midnight blue velvet pillows
- Gray velvet pillows
- Faux fur blanket
- Faux fur pillows
- Ivory cable knit pillow (similar)
- Blue chenille blanket
- Jute rug
- Ceiling fan
Next stop on the winter mantel and living room tour is Jennifer at Town and Country Living! Hop over and say hi. 🙂
So I have to ask… since we’re talking hopes and goals and everything. Are you working on a resolution this year? Or maybe already accomplished one? Robert and I just started another round of Whole30 and it’s kickin’ my tail! Olivia has no idea how jealous I am of her PB&J and Cheerios every day.