My vintage mantelpiece

Surface View lace canvas - Decorator's Notebook blog

Do you feel a kind of void in your home when you take your Christmas decorations down? To me, rooms that felt perfectly warm and cosy in November suddenly feel empty and bland come January. The advantage for me this year is I’ve rediscovered some of my most precious styling treasures. When we moved here in June the box containing them went into the loft, and I had every intention of unpacking them later once the kettle had been located and the rooms straightened out. But inevitably, time has gone on and it wasn’t until the Christmas decorations went back into the loft earlier this week that I finally rediscovered all my special vintage things. Styling up my mantelpiece has definitely helped me get over that drab January feeling.

Just before Christmas I was invited by Surface View to try out their website and choose a piece for my home. The blank wall above the fireplace was the obvious place and I choose a canvas from the V&A collection; a photographed piece of Belgian lace from a wedding veil, dating from around 1890. I really love how it has a pretty vintage look close-up, but from afar it looks bold and contemporary. Using the nifty features on the website I was able to have the canvas made up exactly to the size I wanted and choose the section of the lace I liked best.

Vintage mantelpiece styling detail - Decorator's Notebook blog

We inherited the Charleston Grey (Farrow & Ball) on the walls from the previous owners, who actually had very good taste where paint was concerned! I added my little bird vase (a birthday gift from my colleagues when I worked at Ideal Home) with some cheery billy buttons. Then, one of our new copper double sided frames from Decorator’s Notebook with a vintage print of the Moulin Rouge and one of my many apothecary bottles with a sprig of wax flowers. Finally, my ceramic scissors and ceramic bird under a glass cloche… as you do!

Vintage styled mantelpiece - Decorator's Notebook blog

I styled up the other corner with more apothecary bottles, a glass candlestick (the only one that survived the move!), a ‘knitted’ ceramic beaker by Annette Bugansky and my wooden printing block letters, which were a housewarming gift from the lovely Heather at Growing Spaces when I bought my first flat in London. It was all taking shape nicely!

Child's Hmong slippers - Decorator's Notebook blog

Aren’t these little shoes just adorable? They’re one of my latest vintage finds, picked up from the flea market in Bath. They’re child’s slippers from Vietnam, traditionally embroidered with Hmong tribal designs. The soles are stitched all over too to make them grippy. I just love the colours, detailing and the love that must have gone into making them.

How to style a mantelpiece - Decorator's Notebook blog

Rediscovering my box of treasures was almost as joyful as buying them all over again! Each piece has precious memories attached, from thoughtful presents to handmade crafts and interesting flea market finds. I love how the new lace canvas pulls everything together and creates an eye-catching focus to the room.

So, if you’re feeling the January slump, try re-styling a little corner, treat yourself to something new and give your rooms a little pre-spring refreshment. I feel much more cheerful for doing so!

[This post is written in collaboration with Surface View]

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Comments

  1. says

    Hello Bethan, What a pretty collection! I love the apothecary jars and vintage print letters but most of all the delightful little slippers… wishing you a very happy 2015! Alison x

  2. says

    These little shoes very adorable Bethan. I love your vintage collection very much and these are decorated in such a way that everyone wish to know the story behind each of them. Really very nice collection. Congratulations to you!!!

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