Halloween Mantel (Mantle)~The "Livable" Version

At the end of this post, feel free to share your honest feelings about traditional Halloween decor.
This year, I'm keeping it simple.  Mainly because I am really busy with work,  but another reason I'm keeping it simple...I like it that way.  

  Too much Halloween makes me anxious.  Especially traditional Halloween decor like cobwebs, spiders, blood, guts, ghosts, skeletons, severed body parts, etc.





Last night as I was putting the mantle together, my husband and the kids both said it looked great but needed spider webs...lots of spider webs.  I totally agree that covering it with webs would look awesome but I just can't live among spider webs for four weeks.





Especially all over the mantle, the main focal point of the busiest room in our home.  So, this year, I'm breaking it down into two steps; the "livable version" and the "spooky version".  






Last night I implemented the "livable" version.  As we get closer to the day, I'll spookify the mantle a bit more.  For now, its the cute stuff.  
Like this sparkly garland from HomeGoods. 







And a pretty, orange toss pillow on my favorite chair. 







The oversized monogram was hand painted on a sheet of mdf, I made it a few years ago (you can see it on last year's spooky mantle featured today over at HomeStories A to Z).  
The giant spider was a Goodwill find and the little pumpkins are from The Dollar Tree.






Our silhouettes of the kids were given a fall makeover by switching out the red mats for orange.  

Finding cheap mats the perfect color was next to impossible so I made my own.  I purchased plain white mats at Walmart ($2.50 each) and painted them with craft paint.  It was tough to find a pretty orange craft paint at Walmart.   I purchased the quietest orange I could find and mixed in a few drops of black to "muddy it up" a bit.  







So here it is for now, the "livable" version.  I'll be sure to post the "ugly"
 "spooky" version later.  





Just so I don't look like the evilest mom in the world...
... I should mention that every year the kids get to decorate the lower level family room.  Cobwebs, blood, ghosts, tombstones, severed body parts, you name it, it's down there.  


How do you feel about traditional Halloween decor?  Do you love it or hate it?  Do you find it hard to live with?  
You can be honest, I won't tell anyone ;).
Linked up to the fall decor party at The Inspired Room.

34 comments:

  1. Love it! Thank you for the ideas. We've only been in our home for 2 years and it's still not decorated the way I would like...but I love decorating for fall and Halloween. I am actually liking the idea of classy Halloween decor this year! (I must be growing up!) Your home looks beautiful! -Alicia
    http://acountry-galsdomesticjourney.blogspot.com/

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  2. I didn't even decorate for Halloween until about 2 years ago...I can't stand really scary or gross decorations. (No body parts or headless dolls, thank you.) I have been seduced by glitter, however...if you glitter a spider, it's not nearly so scary! That said...I could NEVER handle the size of spider you're using! Big spiders freak me out!

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  3. Our children are all grown but I'm with you...I do not like the gory stuff. Even spiders bug me (ha). I love an autumn theme, with pumpkins and pretty leaves and harvest colors. When the kids were younger we always had a cute witch or two and a scarecrow too. You're a trooper Sarah!

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  4. I don't like Halloween decor. I never have. I stick with strictly fall decor in my house. That being said, I LOVE. your mantle even with the spider...lol. It's beautiful!

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  5. I love your blog! You have wonderful taste.
    But as a believer, I don't understand why people would dress up their precious kids in devil costumes, disgusting masks and what not. I am terrified of spiders as it is, so I cannot imagine hanging a huge one on my mantel... I would have nightmares! Lol
    But I gotta say, I love your fireplace mantel and the way you have everything hung and laid out {minus the halloween decor}. Its beautiful!!!

    Vera :)

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  6. I'm totally with you! I do love the fun Halloween decorating but don't like the scary or gross decorating either. Love your mantel - just the right amount of "classy" Halloween!

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  7. I'm with you! We don't do much Halloween decor. I go straight to autumn colors and skip all the black, spiderwebs, and creepy stuff!

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  8. Nope! Not much Halloween decor here. I go straight for the Autumn decor. Pumpkins, corncobs, etc. No spiderwebs, body parts or gross stuff here :) Not much black, either, but yours is stunning in the photos!

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  9. I go back and forth. What you have is pretty and classy. But, I love the craziness of Halloween - the witches, the potions, the other "fun" parts. I do not the gross stuff - no oozing blood or pumpkin vomitting necessary. Now, for our Halloween party this year, I do plan to do some "gross" food, but I will try to draw a line.

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  10. I love Halloween! My kids love it when I bring out the decorations. It's simple though, no blood and super spooky here. I have a couple of glittered skulls and that about as spooky as it gets around here. My boys would love it more spooky but I blame it on the little ones in the house that it would be to scary for them. :0

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  11. I agree... I'm not into Halloween decorations. In fact, I decorate for Fall and then add more touches once Halloween has past. I do love your mantle and your blog:)

    Thanks for sharing,
    Cindy

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  12. I don't go for the super scary/gory Halloween decor. We have little kids and lots of families with little ones visit us - my house is more welcoming if I keep it to general autumn decor. However, I do love Edgar Allen Poe and would love to do a room up in a theme around his poem "The Raven" without getting too gruesome.

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  13. I always love your mantels, Sarah, and this one is just as charming as ever! I'm not one for the gore, either. I usually go the whimsical Halloween route, as I still have young kids and I don't want to scare the life out of them! Plus, I have more fun decorating with that style than with bloody zombies ;-). Cheers, Kerri

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  14. Hate it! I like autumn decor but not Halloween. I do like your take on the orange and black elements though!

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  15. I totally agree with you. I am all for decorating for the seasons, but I love my fall decor too much to change it all over to Halloween so soon. I pull out a few things the week of Halloween. It's a fun surprise when my kds get home from school to see that I have transformed the dining roomtable to a Halloween theme and added a few touches in with my fall decor. I am new to following your blog and so far I love it!! Thanks for sharing what you do!

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  16. I agree about the scary/gory Halloween decorating. None of that at my house! However, I LOVE fall decorating because I can leave it up through Thanksgiving and just tweak a little here and there if I get tired of something. I love the little stack of pumpkins from The Dollar Tree!

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  17. I personally don't like "Halloween" decor at all! I prefer to decorate for the Fall and that last week onto Thanksgiving and then I transition to the Christmas decorations! Right now I have lots of pumpkins, gourds, leaves and apples with vibrants hues of amber, orange, browns and yellows. I love the smell of all the great candles this time of the year too!

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  18. I'm with the readers who aren't fond of blood and guts Halloween decorating. I do enjoy some traditional-looking jack-o-lanterns but that's about it for us.

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  19. Beautiful!! I love it and the pillows are lovely too :)

    Hugs, Tanya

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  20. No spooky Halloween decor... I like classy/fall decor that I can keep out all through October and after Thanksgiving. I put out my fall decor today and for Halloween I added some cute silver mercury glass votives with black velvet spider webs, some Martha Stewart stick on bat gels to my apothecary jars one filled with red apples, one with pears, and one with green apples. I also added a boutique halloween tree with pumpkin ornaments to my island and a few crows in various vinettes around the house. I will replace these items with my turkey, squirrel decor after Halloween and keep up until the day after Thanksgiving when the Christmas decor comes out. I am going to make a pinterest project with some painted black wine bottles with Martha Stewart labels I bought at TJ Max. Thanks for sharing. Jeni

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  21. I LOVE Halloween decor but haven't done any in the last couple of years because of a certain two year old and a recent move. Also, I think with all the stuff I have it's seems like too much work at times, especially when it's time to put things away. I won't be doing much for decor again this year because of my toddler, maybe next year I'll get more out. I do like the creepy window silhouettes and vine crawling along the walls. The purple string of lights, vinyl clings on the mirrors and paper bats on the wall. I don't really use the cobwebs and body parts, but will use the odd skull and tombstone ;) I do love the simplicity of your mantel, nice and easy. I also like the idea of adding on more creepiness as you get closer to the holiday.

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  22. I like spooky without being gorey.

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  23. I'm like you, don't care for halloween, matter of fact I do not celebrate it at all in my house. I decorate for autumn all the way until a few days after Thanksgiving. I never liked the look of halloween. But my home is full of autumn decor. my favorite time of year. Yours looks great just with the minimal you have.

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  24. I'm with you ... if I want spider webs all I have to do is walk outside this time of year. But, seriously, I do a Fall mantle and then throw in a few cute little vintage Halloween decorative articles in about mid-October. My kids are grown and gone now so I don't focus much on Halloween. We don't even get trick-or-treaters out here in the country. I like decor that can take me through Thanksgiving. Your mantle is really cute though.

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  25. I agree with you on the 'no gore or body parts'
    rule. I generally do fall decor and very little Halloween. Your mantle looks nice but I had to laugh because silhouettes are one thing that really creep me out! Sorry, it's just a thing I have.

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  26. I have searched your site and come up empty handed so far. Can you direct me to the post where you painted your fireplace mantle black?

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    Replies
    1. Hey Allison, Here is the link to the black firpeplace painting tutorial:
      http://www.theyellowcapecod.com/2011/10/a31-days-of-character-building-builder.html
      Thanks for stopping by :) Sarah

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  27. I like fall decor with a touch of "nice" spooky at the end of October. I decorate for October and November so I only have to change a few things for Thanksgiving. Love fall! Love your mantle and that chair is gorgeous!

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  28. I think it looks great! Just enough. I don't decorate for Halloween at all. I usually feel bad about it on Halloween night when we go trick-or-treating and see all the fun (outside) decorations. I don't care for the gory stuff either, but cute is nice. I really don't do any seasonal decorating anymore other than for Christmas. I just got so tired of getting all the stuff out and then having to put it away and get something else out. I always appreciate how my house looks after all the Christmas stuff is put away, so I like to keep it that way most of the year. I enjoy other people's seasonal decorations, though. :)

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  29. I love this version but what catches my eye is the framed monogram M. How were you able to make this? I am interested in making a W for my living room but cannot find a template for a large . Can you help?
    Midteacher@aol.com

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    Replies
    1. I too would love to know how you made the framed monogram. I have a large wall of negative space and this would be perfect!
      becca.gater@gmail.com

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  30. Right there with you, we decorate on October 1st, but we are fun Halloween, not gory or creepy. And my kids set it up, and I tweak. It disappears November 1st, by then I am Halloweened out!

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  31. Beautiful! Now I want to paint some mats!
    Debbie

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  32. Definitely prefer cute Halloween decorations over spooky ones! Love your decorations!

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