Essentials from Target for The Design Confidential Feeling Fall // Essentials for Creating a Cozy Mantel

We had a brief moment last week, where the temperatures dropped slightly and it was rainy and overcast. It was glorious and just a taste of what is to come. It left me wanting nothing more than to sit by the fire and snuggle in with my boys. So naturally, my mantel is the first area of my home to get a seasonal update.

My favorite way to usher in any new season is to add a few easy pieces to my fireplace mantel that have the feel and color palette I am craving.  No major sweeping changes, just a smattering of new details to create the perfect ambiance. Target is my first stop when I need change in my home, and I never leave empty handed, or without an overflowing cart full of gorgeous décor. My recent fieldtrip there to find some fabulous fall accessories for a seasonal update was no exception. I found so many amazing pieces to help me set the mood for the coming months.

This fall I am coveting simple and pared back decor with natural elements and warm subdued brassy touches. I always adore a timeless black and white look, and this season I am giving this classic a fresh take by adding neutral and natural decor, graphic geometric lines, and warm brassy metallic accessories.

Light Sparkle and Natural Elements from Target for The Design Confidential Feeling Fall // Essentials for Creating a Cozy Mantel

Must Have Essentials for bringing a warm and cozy feel to your Mantel //

Light / As the days begin to grow shorter and a the temperatures begin to drop, having more light and warmth in your home is necessary. I add a bit of both by lighting a fire in my fireplace. When a fire isn’t possible, I love to add an extra light fixture or two to my space. Since I love to do something unexpected, adding a lamp or pair of lamps to my mantel is one of my favorite ways to spice things up and add a bit more functionality to my room.

Subdued Sparkle / Since the Winter Holidays tend to require an overabundance of sparkle, by nature, I like to get my feet wet by adding a bit of warm subdued sparkle to my home during fall. Muted gold and brass is a great way to amp up that cozy feeling I am craving this time of year. The beautiful and unassuming ceramic bowl on the mantel provides just a hint of what's inside with it's gorgeous gold rimmed edge. 

Natural Elements / Nothing says fall to me like changing leaves and sparse branches so I love to add natural elements to my mantle, and bring a bit of the outdoors in. This creates the perfect textural layer to my decor.

Comfort and Simplicity from Target for The Design Confidential Feeling Fall // Essentials for Creating a Cozy Mantel

Comfort / As a family, we spend quite a bit of time on the floor. I suppose that comes with the territory when you have young children, especially boys. The boys are mesmerized by a nice fire in the fireplace, so adding a plush rug in front of the hearth and having a soft chunky cable-knit throw and several throw pillows within reach is the ideal way to entice the adults to join in and gather around to spend some quality time unplugged and enjoying each other.

Simplicity / With the chaos that is typical during the summer months, the Fall is when I want nothing more than simple uncluttered décor and life to move a slower pace. This time of year is my calm before the storm of the winter months, so unfussy surroundings that are easy to maintain and enjoy, bring me great pleasure.

Taste of Fall from Target for The Design Confidential Feeling Fall // Essentials for Creating a Cozy Mantel

Taste / We are a home filled entirely with boys, with the exception of me, so naturally food is something of a large focus here. The fall just happens to bring all of the flavors that I love most, from apple to pumpkin spice to every fall-inspired drink and baked good in between. These things provide a taste of the season that is so very welcome after the blistering summer months here. I always have healthy and easy to prepare food in my home, but during the fall this is one area where I love to do away with convenience and take the time to make and bake from scratch. It’s actually the only time of year I tend to do this so I try to keep these flavors close at hand and a cute accent table near the hearth is ideal for this. A well placed pitcher and ice bucket take an otherwise standard daily ritual to the next level and make it a bit more special. There is something magical about picking apples and choosing pumpkins as a family, and then making those fall fresh things into a sweet treat. It forces me to slow down and focus on nothing more than the task at hand and that is nearly impossible to do otherwise.

Fall Decor from Target for The Design Confidential Feeling Fall // Essentials for Creating a Cozy Mantel

Are you excited to celebrate the cooler months? Do you have any family traditions that you are excited to rekindle once the fall season begins? How will you add a taste of fall to your home this season? I am a summertime loving gal, but it never fails that the soft metallics and natural elements of fall always pull me in. Bring on the gorgeous hues of changing leaves and a fire in the fireplace… I am finally ready.

This post is sponsored by Target. Shop Home Décor for modern luxury made easy.

DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project

Tis the season, as they say, and with this easy project you will add just the right amount of haunt to your Halloween decor, in a snap. To create your own Ram's Horn Display Shelf, only a few items and a few minutes of your time are needed. This project is seriously that easy... if you love the look of taxidermy or horns, then this could easily be a project you create any time of year, it really isn't specific to Halloween!

The rest of this spooky holiday display is fairly straightforward, but I will list the sources and materials used here for easy reference just a bit further down, so stay tuned after the tutorial for a full breakdown.

Spooky Display for The Design Confidential DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project


/ 1x6 at 6 feet. I used a dog eared cedar fence board like this because they are really inexpensive!

/ 2 - 1 1/2" Right Angle Brackets

/ 1 1/4" Screws and Wall Anchors for Drywall

/ #6 3/8" Screws if using a fence board and #6 1/2" Screws if using a regular 1x6 board.

/ Gold Ram's Horns

/ Sandpaper

/ Finishing Supplies if you plan to paint or stain your shelf. I left mine natural.


/ Cut your board down to size. Something around or under 3 feet in length is best. Sand according to your intended finish. If you plan to leave natural, sand rough edges and you will obviously need to sand quite a bit more if you plan to stain or paint your shelf. Attach your right angle brackets approximately 4 to 6 inches in from the outside edges of your board (the longer your board, the further in you will place your brackets). The hardware will attach to the bottom your board and hang downward. Mark your holes on the wall where you plan to fasten your shelf (since you attached the brackets to the board already, this will be a snap) and then put your wall anchors in place according to the instructions on the package. Set the screw holes on your bracket hardware over the top of your wall anchors (which should be fairly flush to the wall once in place) and using the screws provided with your anchors, fasten your shelf in place.

/ You are going to place a 2 1/2" drywall screw just to the outside of each of your brackets and fairly close to the bottom of your board. You will not screw this in very far. It should protrude from your wall about 2 1/4" give or take.

/ Cut your horns apart (they likely have a clear cord that would sit around your head if you were using these properly - but we are not - so cut the cord my friends, or at least unsecure it. Holding your horns at the approximate location of your long screws, determine the angle you want them to sit and make a light mark on the top in this place to note the direction for our next step. Using an extra screw, create a small hole in the flat part of the horn that is fairly near the top edge, just below where you made your mark. You are going to use this hole to help you slide the horn over the top of your screw. It will rest on the screw and sit under your board, appearing as though it is the bracket for your shelf. ** You can use a bit of mounting tape or duck tape to stick your horn in place over your brackets so they will hide the hardware and also so they are not loose. You want them to sit nice and tight, right up against your board. 

That is it, you are finished! Place something light weight to display on your shelf!

Antler Display for The Design Confidential DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project

To mount my antler inside the frame, I simply used removable mounting putty on each point where it touches the wall. This baby is pretty secure over here, but if you expect small children to be in the vicinity (especially below a sharp pointy antler), perhaps you should secure using nylon finishing line and wrap around the hardware used to hang your frame.

DECOR SOURCES // Halloween Cat / Halloween Crow / Golden Horns

VINTAGE + OTHER ITEMS // Frame is Vintage / Table - Zinc Garden Table from Crate & Barrel - Similar Table Here and Exact Table For Sale By Owner Here / Stacking Candelabra - PotteryBarn - Similar Found Here and Here / Antlers found on eBay - Similar Here and Here / Gold + White Antler Wall Sculpture - Target Threshold Brand - this would work beautifully as well.

It's Friday I'm In Love // Green With Envy Black White Photography Horses Blanket Planters Handwoven Pillow Pendant Light Glass Coasters Wood Bowls

We had rain! Two weeks ago now, and since then we have had temperatures in the upper 90's. Ugh. I am green with envy of those places that have cooled at least slightly. While I love my summertime, more than most, I am truly a tad tired of the heat. Sunshine I welcome any day of the week, but seriously it has been a bit more than even I care to indulge in. It seems we are stuck in limbo with leaves that want to change with the season but plants that are confused and have blossomed again. It is nothing if not odd. So while I lament the absence of lovely autumn inspired greens we typically see take over the otherwise golden rolling hills of El Dorado, and the gorgeous cool mornings with beautiful fall colors hanging on the trees... I will celebrate these long lost hues by loving on some gorgeous photography in foggy tones, indoor planters with an earthy feel, and lovely accessories in all the colors I seem to be lacking.

1 // Pampa Horse Black + White Prints 2 // Sweatshirt Plaid Green Blanket 3 // Walnut and Beech Double Stripe Snack Bowls 4 // Ombre Yellow Striped Coasters 5 // Light Block 6 // Hand Woven Pillow 7 // Walsh Firewood Carrier 8 // Concrete Planters


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