About a month ago, I posted the before and after pictures of our living room. I figured the before and afters of the mantle deserved their own post because the difference is pretty drastic. The mantle is gorgeous, but I've never liked the color of oak wood. The orangey color just doesn't work for me; that, and the oak wood stuck out like a sore thumb against the light blue walls.
So, literally nine or ten coats of primer (and one coat of semi-gloss) later, the mantle fit in much better with the rest of the room. I'd like to take it even farther and paint the brick and the inside of the fireplace, since it doesn't work anyways. If I cleaned out the fireplace (and possibly painted it a dark gray or black), I could get rid of the cracked fireplace screen. Don't think I'm crazy-- Young House Love did it and made their fireplace look ten times better.
More about the mirror you see later this week. Deric and I just finished making it, but we didn't consider a few things before starting our project. And as for the fall decor, they're my on-a-budget mostly-from-Dollar-Store leaves and pumpkins. While it bugs me to death that the mirror absolutely dwarfs everything else on the mantle, I'm pretty surprised at what I could find for $1. Each vase on the right was $1; the fake leaves were $1 for about 50 leaves; candle was $1; and the felt leaf garland was found on Pinterest. The pumpkins were from TJ Maxx and while they weren't a dollar, they were close.
So what do you think? I'm so glad I decided to paint that mantle, although that orangey-oak probably would've matched all those fall colors pretty well. ;)