Easy DIY: Expanding the Ledge on your Fireplace Mantle


Is the ledge on your mantle too narrow?

This is such a common challenge. I find most mantles are too narrow for practical decorating purposes and it drives me crazy. My solution was coming up with an Easy DIY: Explanding the Ledge on your Fireplace Mantle (without damaging the original mantle!)

Here’s how I did it:

My original mantle ledge was 8 inches deep.  I figured my ideal ledge width would have a depth of 12 inches.

So, I went to my local Home Depot to have a 1 x 12 cut to the perfect length for my mantle.  Then, I secured it to the wall (not the mantle!) with an L-bracket (They’re just $2.67!).


L Bracket for Expanded Mantle Ledge 6ftmama.com

The key here is to securly attach the L-bracket to the wall (I used anchors) and to attach the L-brack to the board with screws that are short enough so that they don’t go through the board and harm your original mantle.

And, Viola! There you have it – an expanded and more functional mantle ledge.  

Don’t forget, your new, inexpensive, and easily replaced ledge can handle the items that might otherwise damage a mantle. Once I put a pumpkin on my original mantle and when the bottom started to rot, it also left a mark on my mantle. Now, with 1×12’s, I can put something like that on my mantle without a worry.

You could stop here – and stain or paint your ledge – but, I chose to go a different route… SuperMoss!

Adding Supermoss to Mantle Ledge 6ftmama.com

I love decorating with SuperMoss because it provides a natural base for all my mantle sets.  (I’ll show you some pics of it with my Spring, Fall, and Winter mantles below).

You can buy it online from Supermoss.com or Amazon if you can’t find it at your local nursery.

One package of the Moss Mat cut into strips was enough for my mantle. I just attached it with a staple gun. (oh, heavenly day!)

Attaching Supermoss to Mantle Ledge 6ftmama.com

The next time I get around to painting, I’ll probably paint the L-bracket to blend in with my wall color.  Until then, I just conceal it – usually with a stack of books or a nest. 

Mantle Ledge covered in supermoss 6ftmama.com

Here’s my mantle from last Spring.  The moss adds texture and a hint of green grass beneath the row of winter wheat growing in a favorite thrift store find – 12 silver goblets. 

Spring Mantle Ledge with Supermoss 6ftmama.com

In the Fall, I love how the moss echoes a forest floor and shows off drying hydrangea, books, and a collection of stones from the North Shore.

fall mantle ledge with supermoss 6ftmama.com

A mossed mantle is the perfect foil for Christmas Greens and pinecones. Fat pine cones and spruce topiaries add a seasonal touch. 

Christmas Ornasticks on mantle ledge supermoss 6ftmama.com

One last SuperMoss trick – you can use small pieces of it to prop up items on your mantle.

Want to display something that leans over a bit? Straighten it right out by grounding it with an extra padding of SuperMoss. I love using it for elevating all sorts of things on my mantle.

Tomorrow, I’ll share how I put together my Christmas Mantle for 2013 – it’s on a 14 inch board covered in SuperMoss.

Christmas Mantle 2013 6ftmama.com

 P.S. imho, L-brackets make great stocking stuffers! 

Still growing...

Jennifer Ebeling
Jennifer Ebeling is a proud Minnesotan and U of MN alumni. Gooooooo Gophers! Each week, Jennifer produces and hosts Still Growing - a gardening podcast dedicated to helping you and your garden grow. The show is an in-depth interview format. Guests featured on the show share a passion for gardening and include authors, bloggers, professional gardeners, etc. Listeners and guests of the show can join the Still Growing community on Facebook. It's a place to ask questions, share garden stories, interact with great guests featured on the show, and continue to grow and learn. Jennifer and her husband Philip have four children, a big golden lab named Sonny, and live in lovely Maple Grove, Minnesota. P.S. When she's not teaching her four kids a new card game - or teaching them how to drive a car - Jennifer loves inspiring individuals and groups to maximize and personalize their home & garden.
Jennifer Ebeling
Join the Still Growing Listener Community on Facebook! Click here


  1. Denise Zerilli on December 18, 2013 at 6:47 am

    Love this idea!

  2. Dee/reddirtramblings on December 29, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    That looks great Jennifer. Very smart. I like your moss matt too. Merry Christmas!~~Dee

    • Jennifer Ebeling on December 31, 2013 at 10:00 am

      Hey now, Dee! Lovely to have you stop by. Hope you’re holidays were bright – we had a whirlwind this year; 3 family gatherings in 48 hours. We’re in an arctic chill right now in lovely Maple Grove, Minnesota – subzero temps all week… nothing to do but play cards, watch movies, let the dog out for two minutes at a time, and do laundry – in other words, VACATION! Happy New Year!

Leave a Comment