Decking the halls brings gorgeous color and holiday charm into all parts of your home. After sliding down the chimney, Santa feels extra special when greeted by festive mantel adornment. Sometime the options and ideas become overwhelming, and it can be difficult to know just where to start. Today we welcome Tyne Martinez of Floralis Garden Design as she brings some of her professional tips to our Style Blueprint readers.


The goal of Floralis will always be to create environments that are creative, fresh and recognized for their quality and unparalleled attention to detail. This time of year the team at Floralis turns their attention to creating beautiful holiday décor, centerpieces, garlands on staircases, mantels and wreaths. Here are a few of our helpful tips for decorating mantels.

Start with high quality greenery! Evergreen garlands are available in a variety of places this time of year, and this gives you a great place to begin — take that purchase to the next level by adding a variety of materials to it. It’s important that everything is freshly cut and generously proportioned. For example, our mixed garland has boxwood, fraser fir, leucothoe, and cedar. This combination provides more interest with its different leaf shapes, textures and colors.

Here’s a simple trick for working with greenery that makes a world of difference: Cut the garland in the middle and hang it so that each side hangs toward the floor. It always looks awkward if one side points up and the other down.

Next, depending on the space above the mantel, add some elements with height in the corners to provide some balance. This can be a fun place to include family treasures, such as nutcrackers and santas. Candlesticks, sparkly trees or vases will work just as well.

From here, layer, layer, layer! Add other greenery such as magnolia, cryptomeria, holly, white pine, incense cedar, and boxwood. This creates depth and volume.

Now the fun part. Take cues from your room and add elements that will relate. For example, if your décor is tonal and modern, keep the mantel the same. Add frosted pine cones, silver balls, white lights, seeded eucalyptus, feathers, etc.


If the room is more relaxed, add elements like dried pomegranates, red berries, sugar pines cones, red twig dogwood, and dried orange slices. The mantel is much more dramatic when the elements are generously proportioned and colors work together.

Choose ribbon that is good quality (you’ll use it year after year), and choose ribbon that is wired. Trust me, it makes bow making 1,000 times easier. Where you place the bow is entirely personal—asymmetrical, on each side of the mantel or right in the middle. There are no set “rules” about this, so get creative and enjoy yourself!


Thank you, Tyne! These ideas are sure to put some extra jolly in our holly. Floralis offers a complete and diverse range of landscape architecture and garden services including garden design, installation, maintenance, containers, seasonal color, interior arrangements, events and holiday décor. 

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