In interior design, balance is the sense of equilibrium created when the visual weight of objects in a room is balanced on both sides of a center point. Two types of balance to consider are symmetrical (formal) and asymmetrical (informal.) Balance can also refer to the location of furniture and other objects or the use of color, as in lighter/darker or bold/neutral.
The fireplace mantel and the objects used to decorate it can illustrate the design principle balance perhaps more effectively than any other place in a home. Holiday decorations can further emphasize or even exaggerate balance via the fireplace mantel. Here’s a little virtual tour of balanced mantel decorations.
A massive stone fireplace in this lodge style great room is decorated from the hearth up. Balance is maintained on the mantel with decorative objects kept low so they won’t interfere with television viewing.
A pair of ornate candelabra is used to achieve perfect balance atop this vintage fireplace mantel with a centerpiece of fresh white flowers.
Treasured porcelain pieces mirror each other on this formal fireplace mantel with a long decorated garland hanging to the floor on either side.
Symmetrical balance goes big with twin topiary Christmas trees, while the center decorations show a bit of asymmetry.
A formal white fireplace is decked out in feminine holiday decorations. The design is distinctly balanced with candlesticks, treasured figurines and the fabulously full garland.
Here, balance around the fireplace is seen in an elaborate garland design with small trees formed from fresh fruit placed in the center of the mantel itself.
And finally, this stone fireplace and antique wood mantel beautifully illustrate asymmetrical balance. Rather than positioning these tall topiaries on either end of the mantel to achieve symmetrical balance, they are all placed beginning on one side and ending about three fourths of the way across. It’s a great look with a garland of greenery covering the entire mantel.