My friend Sol asked me to come over and help her accessorize her mantel. She has a graphic mantel, with white painted brick and wood, and a really pretty vintage mirror of which she painted the frame in satin black.
In my opinion, mantelscapes are something you can easily change out on a whim. Sometimes I clutter mine up with accessories, and other times I wipe it clean, and just leave a lone candle. You can add-in seasonal decor, or use it to highlight new acquisitions, or framed kid artwork when you are in the mood to look at something different. I don't get too hung up about what is on my mantel. It is not like searching for a perfect piece of art to fit a spot that will stay there long term. Mantels are a good place to have fun decorating and re-decorating. Here is a progression of a few of the ways I styled Sol's mantel, using things she had around her house.
1. A drawing that her 23 month daughter did, some glass candlesticks, faux succulents, iron pig and vintage turquoise artwork that she inherited from her Dad
2. Added a giant gourd, removed the pig and vintage art
3. Brought the iron pig back, added a giant art photograph, removed the kid drawing and one succulent
4.Added a vintage crewel piece and changed orientation of her daughter's drawing
5. Added a book stack and a brass pig
6. Thought it looked too busy, so cleared it off a bit
7. Added some freshly cut palm fronds, removed the small succulent and Voila!...this was how it looked when I left it. It could look totally different today, as Sol had lots of great accessorizing options.