I don’t know about you, but any time I’m feeling extra stressed or anxious there are three things that really help me: prayer, going for a run, and doing something creative. Prayer is definitely my best stress-reliever, but being creative has always been a great outlet for me too. I LOVE working with my hands, even if it’s something as simple as organizing a closet or doing a small DIY, it’s therapeutic for me. Especially if I have good music playing and a cup of yummy coffee in hand–I just zone out and focus on what I’m doing. Anyway, when I woke up yesterday I was craving a project. I needed a project, so I grabbed the sander and did a simple and rustic mantel makeover in our front room. This project turned out better than I ever could have imagined and it totally transformed this space. I’m so excited to share it with you today!! Let’s start with a before photo of what the mantel looked like when I started:
This space always felt kinda blah to me. Sure it was pretty, but it lacked pizazz. Something just felt off, but I never could figure out what it was until it dawned on me that the mantel should be a natural wood color! The white needed to go.
Here’s a progress shot. I honestly thought this project would take me about thirty minutes, but oh boy I was wrong. It ended being about 2.5 hours of sanding, mostly due to the fact that I had to sand down through one layer of paint and two layers of stain. It was way more work than I anticipated. And let me tell you, sanding makes a huge mess. I wasn’t expecting that either, but this entire room was covered in dust. Anyway, I got it done and here is the finished look:
Eeeeek!! Isn’t it so pretty?! I seriously love it so much more than the all white. It gives this fireplace much needed contrast and warmth. I just can’t get over what a difference this made and now I’m kicking myself for not doing this sooner. The natural wood is what was missing all along.
I can’t get over the before and after of this simple and rustic mantel makeover–it’s just so dang good!! And it’s amazing to me how a little bit of natural wood tones can really warm up a space. It just makes this whole area feel more cozy and pulled together. I’m loving this change and now I’m wondering what else I can sand down. Ha! Anyway, I hope this post gives you an idea or two for your own home. And I hope it inspires you to get creative or simply spend time doing something you enjoy. I promise you’ll feel better for it! xo