seasons of home | fall living room

by | Sep 19, 2017 | All Things Home, Decorating, Fall, Holiday | 60 comments

I’ll be really honest here…

The only reason I decorated my living room for fall was for this post.  And there it is.

Before you bail on this post, though, let me tell you something more…

As I started clipping eucalyptus and tucking it in around pumpkins, grabbing apples from the bowl in the kitchen and mini pinecones from the dough bowl in the dining room, there was a joy discovered that went beyond having a styled mantel for a blog post.

I haven’t had a mantel for at least 15 years and I hadn’t even thought about the decorating possibilities beyond hanging stockings for Christmas.  I even had a “duh” moment when I was wondering where I was going to put the greens and gourds I bought.

I fiddled and played and, when I stepped back, our mantle, and the whole room by extension, looked cozy and ready for autumn.  I wouldn’t have done it on my own.  I’m laser-focused on getting my kitchen painted and catching up on aspects of my business that were set aside as I was moving.

I wouldn’t have slowed down to do something as frivolous as decorating a mantel.

The point is, there are times we do things for a “show”, but we end up getting more out of it than we anticipated.

It’s sort of like getting dolled up, so you’re not sporting greasy hair and a bare face at the gym or dropping the kids off or to make an Instagram Story, but the styled hair and mascara end up giving you confidence throughout the day.

This mantel got a little bit of mascara and the whole room has been elevated.

(Since so many people asked, the white flower was purchased in the dried flower section of my local Hobby Lobby.  It’s not an actual flower, but one that was made from a dried natural material…not sure what it’s even called!)

And working on the mantel made me want to do more, so I stacked some pumpkins on the hearth…

…and arranged some pears, apples, and small pinecones on the side table.

I even got a little help…

It’s simple.  It didn’t take much time.  It didn’t cost a lot.  And it will be dissected as we eat the fruit, but it’s given this freshly painted, new-to-us room, a little more confidence as we make it truly ours.

Speaking of painting…I really need to paint this spot I missed!!

Can you believe I didn’t notice that for like a week?!

If you’d like more fall inspiration, check out these gorgeous rooms…

Ella Claire | Miss Mustard Seed | French Country Cotage | Love Grows Wild

City Farmhouse | Craftberry Bush | Rooms for Rent | Jennifer Rizzo

Nesting with Grace | Shades of Blue Interiors | My Sweet Savannah | Dear Lillie

Liz Marie Blog | and our lovely featured guest, Zevy Joy

PS – When you don’t have a mantel for 15 years or the occasion to write about one, you don’t realize it’s spelled mantel, not mantle, until some nice person points it out to you!  You learn something new everyday, right?


  1. Brooke Christen

    Yes, I would love a fireplace! And what a treat to decorate it, you did a gorgeous job. I totally get what you are saying, it is good for us to create, it gives new energy I think!

  2. Linda at q is for quandie

    LOL, so funny about the spot you missed on the wall. I have a similar spot in my guest room. I didn’t notice it until after I took photos in the room and then was editing them on the computer and there it was clear as day. I haven’t fixed it yet either 😉

  3. Karen L.

    Love your colors which I will try and emulate for our table next month. I love, love Fall but don’t like orange or the bright colors to decorate with, although I love those colors on the trees outside. 🙂 I’ll bet your Fall in Minnesota will be glorious!

  4. Kate

    This is the first time in 15 years we have NOT had a fireplace. Where will we hang the Christmas stockings?

    I don’t do much decorating for autumn. Heck, I’m still trying to get boxes unpacked! I did put up a little display by the front door. I have a charming hammered aluminium tray and on it I place some wooden apples, dried pomegranate, acorns and a cute, little stuffed squirrel holding an acorn. It’s not super sophisticated but it makes me (and the kids) smile.

    • mary

      How about hanging them on a stairs from the spindles? That is what my daughter did in her house
      and it was the first thing you saw when you walked through the door.

  5. Anne

    I love the simplicity of your mantle. Simple, beautiful, but still homey…not over the top. It’s that nod to the season, but still home for the family. I never want folks who visit to feel like they can’t touch or relax. Wonderful!

  6. Kristen

    So beautiful Marian! I know exactly what you mean- it happens to me quite often actually. It feeds my soul in a way!

  7. Amber

    I love the green/cream/white combo instead of the traditional orange and browns we usually see at this time of year! Just Beautiful!

  8. Jen

    Beautiful mantle Marian! The whole space is so cozy & inviting!!

  9. Susan

    The older I get, the more I want to decorate with things from nature. I have you to thank for that, Marian! I donated boxes of seasonal stuff to charity and haven’t missed it! Love your mantle arrangement! Are those white flowers real or silk?

  10. Beth Beal

    It looks great. The color really adds to the space.

  11. Karin

    Love your beautiful fall style. Now you have inspired me to take advantage of the nice big mantle in our dining room and decorate for the season!

  12. Susan Stringfellow

    I miss having a mantle in my current him! I enjoyed seeing how beautiful yours looks.

  13. Ashley

    So pretty! I love the muted color tones and all the green; even though it’s not the typical fall color scheme, it screams fall. 🙂 Also, I really relate the sentiment of taking time for the small seemingly trivial things like a moment to take care of yourself or do something that makes you happy which ripples over into the rest of your day and life making it all better by comparison.

  14. martineBE

    So nice and so cosy.

  15. April

    So what is the white “flower”? A flower, succulent, vegetable? So curious, because it is so beautiful. Funny how none of the links decorated with traditional colors or at first glance that is what it looks like. Really inspired and loving your home transformation. Thanks for taking us along!

  16. Teresa

    Is the eucalyptus faux or real, and where did you get it. Looks great!

    • Marian Parsons

      It’s real and I bought it from Trader Joes. In PA, I was able to find it at Wegman’s.

  17. Pam

    I have never looked forward to your posts more than I do now! Love seeing you settle into your new home! I too wondered about the white flower on your mantle! Thanks for the time you take to share your days!

  18. Amy K

    That is just lovely Marian. Love the colors and simplicity of it. I too struggled with even wanting to do any fall decorating. I pushed myself and then it all just came together. I find myself wanting it all to be simple. Gone are the days of Halloween decorating for me. Now it’s all just fall and while I’m trying to use natural elements I just find faux works better for me and our lifestyle. I’m totally enjoying your new home and look forward to seeing what comes next.

  19. MaryLisa Noyes

    Mantle looks terrific! We have a mantle where a fireplace used to be in our old house. I hesitate removing it because it serves as such a decorating focal point. Enjoy this wonderful room you have created!

  20. nancy w.

    I think perhaps the white “flower ” is a bleached pine cone manipulated to resemble a flower, yes? Love your “helper”.

  21. Kristine

    I love having a mantel….and they way you described your ‘surprise’ on finding you owned one made me laugh out loud! The mantel looks beautiful…the colors sit-up nicely against the picture, and it does elevate the whole room… or maybe that’s just Sebastian with that sweet face! You used my favorites: pears, pinecones, apples… all natural elements! Very inspiring !

  22. Vicki Brawley

    Your mantle and hearth are simply beautiful! I love it!

  23. Ellen Shook

    Your things look so beautiful in your new house, especially the collection of ironstone. The mantel decor and your composition is so nice — I was longing for a decent one myself when we bought this house 10 years ago. The little cane chairs I bought from you a few years ago at the Chapel Market sit in front of the window on either side, and I quite like it!

  24. Lelanie

    I’ve noticed the cow painting before and always admired it, but now it just stand out so much. The colours of the greenery just makes that painting pop. It really looks stunning.

  25. Jo Ellyn Bach

    Your mantel is comfy and simple but warm, seasonal. and lovely. I seem to over-load mine at times. Going to simplify this fall. (Note: be careful using real fruit, produce. I ruined my tabletop with real squash and pumpkins. As it ripened it created spots in the finish. I read you can put small waxed paper under them. I am afraid to try now) Love your blog and the walk to the new job and new house..

    • Marian Parsons

      That’s a great tip!

  26. JolieAnne

    I really like the color you painted your
    Living room. Is it glass slipper? I think seeing the color it was is a nice reminder of how far you have come!
    I am enjoying the small paintings you are creating!

    • Marian Parsons

      It’s Wickham Gray by Benjamin Moore.

  27. Pam

    I can’t believe you didn’t identify the white flower! Girls gotta know. So beautiful!

    • Marian Parsons

      I don’t know what it’s called! I found it in the dried flower section of Hobby Lobby and it’s not an actual flower, but something made out of dried natural elements.

  28. Eileen

    I love those beautiful soft green and blue pumpkins and has gone a little wild on my front entrance with them and pots of chrysanthemums. I have never really celebrated Halloween, but autumn is all mine. I also have little space between the tv and the mantel so I like what you did to tuck the greenery in there. Pretty.

  29. Nan, Odessa, DE

    I repeat the question – what is the white flower?
    I wish everyone, everywhere would do more decorating with the natural things growing in our space. I am sure your guys will enjoy these surroundings. It all is lovely, and as you expressed, cheap and you will consume those apples, etc. TO MUCH Blink in life today!

    PS do you have any kind of pedestal white bowl for sale? I am shopping for one.

  30. Lora Bloomquist

    Beautiful, it just makes the whole room! I love how the foliage pulls out all the colors in your cow art and how it bridges the gap between the cupboards of white. Live it up with that new-to-you mantle!

  31. B. Folk

    If I owned my own home, instead of living in an apartment, I’d use real greenery and produce for decorating. But, as I live in an apartment, it’s not as if I can have the pest-control man come and rid my home of any spiders, carpenter ant colonies, brown stink bugs, etc., that might sneak in on the real thing. I also cannot eat apples or pears, so they would go to waste. My little kitchen isn’t set up for making pumpkin pie from pie pumpkins, so I buy canned. Thankfully, faux is prettier and more varied than it was in years past!
    Your home and decorations are beautiful. Thanks for the inspiration, Marian.

  32. Kim P

    We have a woodstove with a big glass door, so I can see the fire, but no mantel, I do miss that. Love to see u enjoying ur new home

  33. Becky Delson

    Remind us of the wall paint brand & name. In that close-up of Eulalie, it is very obvious you have painted and it is just a gorgeous color. I love, love, love your Fall palette and style. It’s so serene and quiet, yet welcoming and full of life. Just beautiful!

  34. Becky Delson

    Aaahhh, just noticed you already mentioned the color in a comment above. 🙂


    Mantels are so nice to have, aren’t they? I just love to decorate our mantel for each season. It always makes the room look to cozy.

    Marian, you have done such a lovely job of your mantel, hearth and side table. It’s so beautiful! Such a cute picture of Sebastian on the sofa! He enjoyed being right there with you while you were doing the decorating! Such a nice dog for such a wonderful family!

    Have a great week, Marian! Again, thanks so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to share with all of us! You are such a busy gal and yet you find the time to share with all of us! We love your posts — and you! God Bless you and yours at this wonderful time of year!

  36. Carolyn Kitchen

    Marian, your Autumnal Mantle is inspiring, simple and beautiful.
    I love creating, using items I find when shopping at the market.
    Thank you for sharing.

  37. Leslie Watkins

    Absolutely perfect. Love the colors! Thank you for the inspiration!

  38. JolieAnne

    Thank you for the name of the color.

  39. Josa

    Love, love, love! ❤️ Just the motivation I need to get my mantel to “Fall”!

  40. Lori

    Your house is looking so lovely! Love your mantel decor – looking forward to have a mantel myself again in a few years! We recently repainted my m-i-l’s house and everyday I was finding another spot that needed a touch-up! :/

  41. Marijean Jenson

    Really stunning ! I love all the natural elements! I believe those white flowers are called Sola flowers.

  42. Kimberly

    I live in southern California and, oddly (as we have an almost year-round warm climate here), everywhere I’ve ever lived (except one house my parents had when I was a child, and one apartment I lived in on my own) has had a fireplace and mantel. The place I’m in now in West L.A. has a really pretty carved wood mantel — it’s the only nice thing in the entire crappy apartment, aside from the comparatively large-ish size of my bedroom and closet! LOL!

    I love your fireplace and mantel, Marian, especially the design of the mantel as it’s more on the traditional side and really speaks to me style-wise. You’ve done a beautiful job (of course, as you always do!) dressing it up for fall, it’s just so pretty with the painted woodwork. And isn’t it amazing the difference in the feel of the paint color? The swatch you left of the old color really shows how the new color is totally “you.”

  43. UpstateNYer

    I am impressed that you decorated your new mantle with mostly items you had around the house! That is a nice tip for many who don’t think they have what they truly need.

  44. barbara

    Just dropping by to ask was that fireplace in the house when you bought it, or did you add it and if so where did you buy it its beautiful and your autumn display is just gorgeous….thank you
    Barbara from Canada

  45. Christine

    Love the updated fall palette. The white flower is a sola flower…sola wood is all natural, made from the tapioca plant. They’re so versatile & lovely strung into a garland. They’re soft enough that you can string them together with a needle. Looking forward to seeing more mantel designs…thanks!

  46. Carla from Kansas

    I just googled sola flowers. Made from the tapioca plant. Seriously gorgeous. Lots of online stores carrying them.

  47. Cindy

    Awwwwwww…. it all looks so pretty and homey. I love that you had a moment of pure creativity and appreciation. Your new home becomes more and more beautiful and more like you every single day…. and I LOVE that you totally left that one spot unpainted in the mix of getting so many things done.


  48. Chrissy

    So after perusing Hobby Lobby’s web site, the flower is “natural sola zinnia.”
    When getting ready for seasonal changes, I often start with the buffet or table before cleaning, doing anything else. It gives me the gumption to carry on, and my eye has something pretty to light on during the process.

  49. Courtney

    So pretty Marian!! Just love your style!!

  50. Lori

    Looks great! I wanted to share a tip that might help the look of your granite surround. There is a process (buffing? grinding? not sure) that can take down the shiny finish and give it a more earthy, honed look. My bathroom tile installer did it for me on a black granite threshold and it really changed the look. A stone or tile place should have the info on it.

  51. Kathleen Freund

    Just love your blog! Especially that you share your paint colors , and tell us the brands. I have followed you since 2008 and can’t get enough of your ideas.
    Your photography has just gotten better and you have mastered sewing reupholstering , painting and now watercolor too!
    So happy for you as you make your new home “yours”

  52. Erin

    Marian, I have long been a green eyed jealous woman over your blue and white quilts. Can you tell me their pattern names.


  53. Norma Rolader

    Beautiful and thank you for sharing your home and for the tips God bless

  54. D.

    As to the missed paint spot, my beloved f-i-l calls those “holidays”. I seem to have that same problem all the time with weeding. I’m quite certain I’ve pulled all those pesky little green things, and I come back to find I somehow managed to overlook some, no matter how glaringly obvious!

  55. Amber Ferguson

    You are so talented and inspiring! I love how you have used non-traditional colors but everything still has a fall vibe. I have decided to embrace a softer fall pallet in the living room this coming fall. Your mantel is just gorgeous!



  1. Cozy and Family Friendly Fall Family Room Decor - Ella Claire - […] Claire   |   Miss Mustard Seed   |   French Country Cotage   |   Love Grows […]
  2. Fall Living Room - Shades of Blue Interiors - […] Claire | Miss Mustard Seed | French Country Cotage | Love Grows […]
  3. Living Room Fall Decor - […] Claire | Miss Mustard Seed | French Country Cotage | Love Grows […]
  4. Fall Decor in our Family Room- Seasons of Home Series - Nesting With Grace - […] Claire | Miss Mustard Seed | French Country Cotage | Love Grows […]
  5. Seasons of Home | Fall Living Room - Rooms For Rent blog - […] Claire | Miss Mustard Seed | French Country Cotage | Love Grows […]
  6. Vrolijke herfst Den + nieuw gebouwde deuren - - […] Claire | Miss Mosterdzaad | Frans Landelijk Verblijf | Love Grows […]

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


Subscribe today

and receive a FREE e-version of my planning sheets!

decorating, projects, and recipes for winter

  • hydrangea & homemade christmas tree | decorating ideas
    I got my Christmas tree decorated over the weekend!  It has been hanging out with just lights, a star, and a skirt while I thought about how I wanted to decorate it […]
  • antique trapper basket | christmas decorating
    For one of my freelance articles this year, I needed to share an alternative to decorating a front door with a wreath.  I immediately pictured some kind of a basket. Maybe bike […]
  • finger knitting tutorial | christmas crafts
    Last December, I hopped onto Instagram Stories and made a quick finger knitting tutorial for those who were asking how I made the little wreath present toppers.  The quick tutorial went over […]
  • classic christmas mantel | decorating ideas
    I don’t typically have plans for exactly how I’ll decorate when the holiday season rolls around.  I just start working with my things and see what inspires me and what Ideas spring […]
  • Walmart Gift Ideas & More
    Disclosure: This post of holiday gift ideas is sponsored by Walmart.  As always, all opinions and words are honest and my own. I’ve partnered with Walmart several times in the past around […]


Articles by Date


our sponsors

Bliss and Tell Branding Company