Decorating for the Fall Season: 4 Easy Tips to Capturing Autumn's Spirit
Fall and its crisp weather, changing leaves and autumn holidays are here ... and you should bring the spirit of the season into your home decor.
Create festive displays with pinecones, berries, and pumpkins. Photo credit: Jill Bauer
Bring the Festive Colors of Fall Indoors
If you look around your home, you may already have many items that can transform your existing décor into a festive fall interior. “Adding throw blankets and decorative pillows in multiple textures evokes a feeling of comfort and warmth,” suggested Racheal Hageness, designer and founder of Aspen James Design in Las Vegas, Nevada. “Gather candlesticks of different finishes and varying heights for a statement centerpiece atop your dining table. Wrap that round entry mirror frame with fall foliage, garland or pampas grass.” Candles will add light and fragrance to your home, said Richard Petrie, director of marketing at Thomas Sanderson in the United Kingdom.
A Table Runner Adds Texture and Color
Table runners look wonderful not just on a dining table, but also across the top of a console or buffet table, recommended home and lifestyle expert Jill Bauer from the blog Just Jill. “It's an easy way to add fall color and texture with very little effort,” she said.
You can layer the runners easily, too. Just take a longer 90-inch runner in a neutral color and then find a more seasonal color or print in a 72-inch one to put on top of that to add dimension. You can even create a bit of a fall haven by adding mini pumpkins, gourds, pinecones and foliage. You can experiment with what containers you have and include them in the display as well.
For example, Bauer uses a cake stand with terra cotta tones, placing it over a wooden charger plate. Then she adds some fall foliage touches, a flameless candle, and a domed glass cloche to finish it off. “I love it,” she said. “It's amazing what ‘shopping’ in your home and a little imagination can do to transform" your space.
Switch Up Furniture and Create Moments
You can also switch up your furniture layout to set the tone for the season. For example, Hageness recommended focusing a seating area towards a large window to showcase the change of seasons.
Another fun thing to do is set up moment stations — spaces intended to create opportunities to make memories with friends and family. “These stations can be as simple as scattering a puzzle on a table in a high traffic area of the home, nestling a comfortable lounge chair and side table into a quiet corner along with a stack of your new fall must-reads (this works well with children's books as well), or setting up a beautiful cider bar to gather around, share stories and catch up on one another’s day,” offered Hageness. “Life is so short, these stations provide a moment to slow down and enjoy being present.”
It's easy to bring fall's colors indoors. Photo credit: Jill Bauer
Incorporate Trends in All Sorts of Ways
While certain stalwart decorations indicate the fall season, like pine cones and pumpkins, every year brings something different. “We will see a shift of focus towards natural, genuine and long-lasting interior experiences,” said Hageness. “Heirloom and other quality pieces will replace the disposable and reactive holiday design trends of the past.” This could be a good time to invest in something special that makes you feel good, she added. “Perhaps it is a classic piece of furniture or that alpaca throw you have your eye on. If you love it, it will outlast any trend.”
Bauer is seeing a return to earth tones this autumn. “Brown, it seems, is the new gray,” she said. “This ‘warmer’ color palette is perfect for fall decorating.” Texture is also important as well. Maybe it IS time to get that new throw so you can really cozy up on your furniture. If you’re tired of all that orange, this is your year. “Pumpkins are no longer just orange...you'll find them in creams, eucalyptus greens, and blues, so it's pretty easy to find these icons of the season in colors that work,” offered Bauer. “I couldn't imagine a BLUE pumpkin, but we have a coastal home, and it's now one of my most favorite items to pull out for the season.”
New Ways of Decorating
White pumpkins still remain popular, but something new is that they’re made with yarn. “On Pinterest there are a lot of DIY vendors adding crochet to a set of pumpkins,” said Katie McMinn, founder of Hint of Lavender. “Crocheted pumpkins will instantly add a cozy feel to your home.”
Collections using unusual things — like amber glass, pottery or wooden spoons — is something else seen this fall. Elizabeth Porter of the blog Old Maple Home. takes containers and paints them so that they look like vintage crocks to create her decorations. “A grouped collection like this makes a big decor statement and already lends itself to fall,” she said. “All you need to do is add in some fall foliage, pumping and gourds.”
Place colorful branches and clippings indoors. Photo credit: Thomas Sanderson
Bring the Fall Spirit Outdoors, Too
Don’t forget to take those cozy fall vibes outside as well. “Lanterns intermixed with gourds and pumpkins provide a classic fall look that can happen anywhere from your porch, to lining your front walk,” said Hageness. Porter also recommended using warm fall hues with mums and other planters.
Make sure you decorate that front door area, too. This season, Hageness is seeing large scaled cornhusk wreaths and pampas grass bundles decorating entryways. Pumpkins are always a good addition because they make a space festive.
“I’m a huge fan of wreaths and you can find so many that are artificial leaves or some that are dried,” said McMinn. “I definitely think adding a wreath to your front door adds a warmth and welcome to the rest of your home. It’s like adding a big sign to your front door that says, ‘Come on in. We're having pumpkin spice lattes in here.’”
A pretty blue pumpkin looks good anywhere. Photo credit: Jill Bauer
A Little Goes a Long Way
The traditional fall color palette is saturated and rich, so adding too much of those hues to your home can make it feel dark. Like everything else, the key to home décor is moderation. So don’t make your house into a pumpkin patch.
Bauer suggested finding a few key areas in your home for a "focal" point. Instead of decorating the entire room, you’ll just add touches to each of those spaces. “So that as you walk through your home you have a sense of the season, and it feels more designed,” she said.
“Your fall decor can be looked at much like Coco Chanel's sensibility to fashion accessories,” agreed Hageness. “Step back, take a look, and remove the unnecessary. Sometimes more, is just more.”
A good rule of thumb for Porter is to determine if the décor looks like it naturally belongs in the space. “I never want my fall decor to take over the functionality of my home,” she advised.
Feature photo by Jill Bauer. For more seasonal content, read our post on holiday-inspired decor.
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