Today, I'm going to show you how to put together a Halloween mantel for about $13 (Perfect number for the occasion!) with Goodwill finds and things I found around the house and garden.
Start with an old frame from Goodwill. You need a focal point for the mantel, and this frame is going to be perfect. I have an old Halloween verse I'm going to put on the inside. So, take it apart, and instead of spending more money on a piece of black mat board, just paint the board with black acrylic paint. Cost - $6.99
I started out just painting inside the mat board, but then decided to paint the whole thing. The paint looks shiny and streaked here, but it's wet. When it dries, it's perfectly flat with no streaks!
The poem I used in this framed piece is from an old-fashioned postcard at the Graphics Fairy. I printed it out on 8 1/2" x 11" printer paper, took it to Office Max, and had it enlarged to 18" x 24". Then, I just burned the edges all around, with a few added scorch marks here and there to make it look old and creepy. Cost - $ .99
Here's a close up of the poem from the Graphics Fairy. I used a font called The King and Queen. You can download it free of charge on dafont.com.
Add an old, rusty antique lunch box . . . Cost - $0 (it was in my basement)
. . . some seed pods from your garden (these are cone flowers) in a glass vase. I spray painted the inside with flat, white paint. Cost for the vase and flat white spray paint - $ 3.99
This little bottle also came from Goodwill. Print out a little poison label from the Graphics Fairy, glue it on, and then stain it with some Old English Scratch Cover. Before it dries completely, tear away the label a little bit here and there, so the jar looks old and used! Fill it with some water that's been mixed with a tiny bit of brown and green paint. Cost - $ .49
Add another jar with a huge tarantula glued to the front. You could even have some spiders crawling out of the top of the jar - artificial, of course! This jar was also painted on the inside. The spider is from the Graphics Fairy. Jar cost - $1.99
An old, ornate candle stick is topped with a pillar candle that has been painted black for the occasion.
Put it all together and you have a perfectly creepy mantel for October!
This post wouldn't be complete without a photo taken from a scary angle with the candles aglow!
So . . . let your silver candlesticks tarnish, buy or paint some black candles, and scour your local thrift shop or your basement for some old tin or wood boxes that look like they could hold some eerie ingredients. Use your imagination! Then add some bottles and jars, an old frame, and a fun Halloween verse. Next, take a walk through the garden and look for interesting seed pods to put into those old jars or vases. Remember to plan your pieces with your wall color in mind. The bricks above my fireplace are off white, so candles etc. needed to be black so they would contrast. Little by little, you can put together a Halloween mantel for next to nothing!