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A Fall Football Mantel

by Leo Windham on August 29, 2012

Hello everybody! Leo here. Shhhhh! Not too loud. Jane doesn’t know I’m doing this.

As you may or may not know, this week marks the first week of college football. I love it! And yes, I am ready for some football.

Yesterday Jane took down all of her summer decorations from the mantel. I know she’s getting ready to pumpkin up the place. You know, fall stuff. Stuff like colored leaves, maybe a fall wreath made from a pool noodle, a hand full of acorns, you get the idea. She’s probably out shopping for some of that stuff right now. I thought, here’s my chance. While the cat’s away, the mice will play. And this rat has decided to decorate our mantel with a football theme.

I remember watching a very funny video done by our friend and fellow blogger Kerry at HouseTalkN. She said that in order to have a good project you’ve got to use a lot of burlap. So I cut out and hand sewed these cute little footballs to make this garland. Now I grew up in the country. Burlap, to me, was a croaker sack (a bag to hold livestock feed.) But if Kerry wants me to use some croaker sack material, then I will.

Kerry also said that I should use anything with chevron stripes, so I handpainted this frame for an old picture I found of myself.

This is me in the 6th grade. I was the manager of our high school football team. Manager is just a fancy word for water boy. We actually used a galvanized bucket with a ladle to give the players a drink of water!

This old football was the game ball from my last game. It was presented to me by my high school coach, and it is one of my most prized possessions.

Here I am, old #51.  I mounted that picture on a piece of cardboard that I cut and painted to look like a football. How am I doing so far? By the way, the two cute football players are my sons, David and Kris.

For those of you who know me, here’s Leo with hair.

 What would a decorated mantel be without a pool noodle wreath-wrapped in burlap, of course! I picked up that cute little glass football ornament at one of those pottery stores. I forget which one, but man, there was some neat stuff in there.

I found this brown gingham check in a stack of Jane’s fabrics. Where does she get all that stuff? I apologize for the bow. I’m not formally trained.

Just to add a little more flavor, I cut and hand-painted this football pennant.

So, I really am ready for some football.

WAIT! I think I hear Jane coming in. You do believe that I did all this craft work by myself, don’t you?…..NOT!

I’m joining:

Inspiration Friday@At the Picket Fence

Metamorphosis Monday@Between Naps on the Porch

Newbie Graduate Party@Debbiedoo’s

Home and Garden Thursday@A Delightsome Life

Live from Windhams’ Crossroads,

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at flickr

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

FineHouse August 29, 2012 at 4:40 pm

That is one of the funniest posts I have read! Great job on the mantel, we watch NFL around here, and hubby has been watching the pre-games – which makes me feel like fall!


leo August 29, 2012 at 5:26 pm

I’ve been watching the pre -season games also. Thanks for stopping by the Cottage at the Crossroads. I’m on my way to fine house now.


Faye August 29, 2012 at 4:53 pm

You failed to mention that when you were the waterboy and when you wore that #51 jersey, you were known as “Leon.” You can always tell when people knew you by what they call you. I call you “a great guy with a wonderful sense of humor” and oh so fortunate to have your Jane.


leo August 29, 2012 at 5:11 pm

You are right Faye. I am fortunate and real lucky to have Jane and thanks for the kind words.
forever……Leon from Lamar


Helen August 29, 2012 at 5:15 pm

Leo, I believe it about like I believe you didn’t let Jane know about it. LOL! Tell Jane, that she did a terrific job on her mantle. Watch out for those pumpkins…they’re gonna be there soon! :) Looks great!


leo September 4, 2012 at 5:42 pm

The pumpkins are starting to show up already. Thanks for the comment.


Sherry August 29, 2012 at 5:26 pm

This is classic! I so wish my hubby would decorate a spot in our home and hijack my blog to post about it. Great burlap-y, pool-noodle-y, football-y crafts…even if you didn’t do them all yourself. The personal photos add the perfect touch. :)


Dolly Sarrio August 29, 2012 at 5:31 pm

I like it and must say Leo you are downright talented!


vickie August 29, 2012 at 5:43 pm

Well who ever did the mantel it looks great.You were a cute young thing Leo, Leon, Lamar-are you sure you are not in the witness protection program? Sorry you can’t tie a good bow-my hubby is excellent at it. That is because in high school he was trying to get a certain girl to notice hime, so he took a bow making class just to be near her. It wasn’t me, but hey I’m not jealous cause I ended up with him and I don’t have to pay a big price for fancy bows now.


leo September 4, 2012 at 5:44 pm

The old “take a bow tying class” trick. Good for your hubby.


Carlene @ Oganized Clutter August 29, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Leo, you are really into this DIY blog stuff! You sure know what patterns and fabrics to use!


Debra Kline August 29, 2012 at 7:09 pm

I think we are all ready for some football after that presentation…. you really had me going there for a moment!!!


Gina August 29, 2012 at 7:40 pm

Ok Leo, you had me going! I was getting ready to sing your praises! Lol I absolutely love this mantel and I’m not even a football fan! It is so creative and clever and features such a handsome man! You could not go wrong. It’s perfect, Leo… Jane. :D


leo September 4, 2012 at 5:45 pm

Hi Gina,
You had me at handsome man. I’ll tell Jane what a good job she did on the mantel.


HouseTalkN August 29, 2012 at 9:56 pm

SHUT TO THE UP!!!! This is fantastic! You covered all the “good blogger” basics. Chevron? Check! DIY? Check! Burlap? Check!
This is why I love you two!
Kerry at HouseTalkN


Leo at Cottage at the Crossroads August 29, 2012 at 10:27 pm

I feel like I’m learning from the best. And, don’t you just love the raw smell of a good piece of burlap?


Gee August 29, 2012 at 10:03 pm

I am laughing here. I am NOT a football fan, but was admiring your mantle. You had me.. was going to show the Mr. and everything. Hahahahaaaa…
Wonderful.. Thanks for sharing .
… and for the laughs.

Cheers Gee.
No, sorry. not ready for football :-/


Taryn @ Design, Dining + Diapers August 29, 2012 at 10:03 pm

This is so fun and beautifully put together! Love the old school football photos!


leo September 4, 2012 at 5:47 pm

I was on the annual staff. I have a bunch of those old school photos and they bring back great memories. Thanks for the comment.


Terry August 30, 2012 at 7:11 am

My husband is ready to take down the American flag (for Labor Day weekend) and put up our “House Divided” Auburn/Alabama flag. We will definitely have to fly it on Saturday in honor of the first game of the SEC season! WARRRRRRRRR EAGLE!!!!!!! (and roll tide) heehee!!!


Shirley@Housepitality Designs August 30, 2012 at 7:26 am

Oh Leo…you had me fooled!!…I was thinking while I was reading and looking at those wonderful football projects that “wow…Leo has really learned a great deal from the ever so talented Jane”…The mantel looks wonderful…but you did contribute those great pictures and the football…such a special moment of wonderful times…and look great in Chevron!!!


Linda Miller August 30, 2012 at 8:01 am

This is adorable and what a great idea for early fall. I love college football (which begins this weekend, I believe) especially Seminole football (Florida State University). We don’t have the opportunity to see my team on television that much here in Colorado. I plan on starting my fall decorating after Labor Day. Thanks for the inspiration.


Donnamae August 30, 2012 at 8:03 am

Leo, you’ve got quite a talent there….can’t wait for college football either! ;)


Terri August 30, 2012 at 8:12 am

AND HERE I WAS…… ready to sing your praises and tell Jane how lucky she was to have an all around “Honey” can do it all!!!! LOLOLOL…. Mantle looks great!! What fun for the start of football!!! Terri


Vonda August 30, 2012 at 9:06 am

I was chuckling all the way…thinking you had pulled a fast one on Jane and also thinking what a creative guy! Too funny!


Barbara F. August 30, 2012 at 9:25 am

I actually like this football theme. If I had a terrific guy who was into it, I might even entertain the notion in my home. ^o^ Great “team” effort here, as always. xo


Gretchen August 30, 2012 at 9:43 am

What a great mantle. Good job Leo! I grew up with a Daddy and 2 brothers who loved football. I thought everyone sped home from church on Sunday to grab a quick sandwich and head to the den to watch FOOTBALL. I’m a big fan of my grandson’s football team and the Pittsburgh Steelers and I’d gladly pass up a shopping trip to watch a great game.


Jean Windham August 31, 2012 at 6:20 pm

I knew you were great but not that great. You know I love football and am also ready to celebrate football season. The football garland is so fun. Now you go big fella……. Jean
PS I love all the old pictures too.


Bonnie and Trish @ Uncommon August 31, 2012 at 9:00 pm

ah yes…burlap,chevron, and football…a trifecta!! I’ll be right over with my astro turf coozies!! Y’all crack me up…the mantel looks fabulous!! :)


Charlene August 31, 2012 at 10:22 pm

Looks like y’all are “ready for some football” The mantle looks great!


Ginger August 31, 2012 at 10:26 pm

ABSOLUTELY NOT! I had your number at the croaker sack football banner. I do believe that you installed that tv above the mantel. Enjoy the season. See you and Jane soon. Come over to see my post about the Scots. They are fine engineers.
See you soon.
Blessings to you and Jane.


Ann September 1, 2012 at 9:48 am

The two of you crack me up. I love this! My family is all hunkered down at the moment watching Notre Dame play Navy. The Irish are winning so for now everyone is happy. Enjoy the weekend!


Victoria September 2, 2012 at 6:46 am

Leo…Knew you long ago you were a big bart of my childhood mornings…LOL..
Who knew you were so crafty…HA…Love this mantel and love you are in my Facebook group with posts like this one there will be burlap covered pool noodles going up all over the SOuth…TY for posting this


Dee September 2, 2012 at 11:23 am

Wow Leo! Your mantel looks amazing!!!


Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking September 2, 2012 at 10:16 pm

What a cute post! We have been watching the preseason games and now we are ready for the football season to begin! The mantle looks great!


debbiedoos September 3, 2012 at 8:17 am

Look at this Jane! How fun, and very creative. So many things I love about your mantel. The old football is really awesome, but the banner is really neat too! Thanks so much for sharing with the party.


Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage September 3, 2012 at 10:46 pm

You took Kerry’s words to heart – burlap, check – chevron, check – fun and fabulous, check!!!
Love the burlap footballs – makes me want to watch a game (although it makes me fall asleep). At least I can have all the appetizers!


Kelly September 4, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Love it! The football banner is adorable!


Kathy September 5, 2012 at 5:21 am

Loved your post! I, too, had to post in honor of the start of football season! Go Patriots!


Linda@Coastal Charm September 6, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Now Leo, I can’t believe Jane did all of this by herself:) Great post and GREAT FOOTBALL mantel!!!



Gloria September 6, 2012 at 9:28 pm

What a FANtastic idea! Love, love, love the football banner



Kathy September 11, 2012 at 3:14 pm

Love your autumn, football inspired mantel – very, very creative. Love football, most especially in person! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,


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