10 easy, high-impact decorating ideas that herald the autumn season.
By Brad Mee
Autumn has finally arrived. It’s time to head indoors and harvest all the comfort and coziness the season has to offer. To get started, focus on the rooms you live in most—where you relax, entertain, dine, and sleep.
Spruce up the spaces with the autumn’s best—from tones and textures to furnishings and finishes. Here are 10 easy ways to celebrate the season by enriching your home with all fall has to offer.
Clio vases from Crate & Barrel, Murray
1. Switch Out Glass
Autumn’s palette includes hues ranging from teal to copper, amber to grape. It doesn’t include clear. Nor should your glassware. Capture fall’s richness by swapping out clear glass objects with colorful replacements. Everyday pieces including bowls, vases and glassware can help launch a rich, seasonal palette that soothes and surprises.
2. Mix Patterns
Stark and simple may be fine for summer, but autumn calls for more complexity. Pile on the patterns. Mix all-the-rage paisleys, fierce florals, hybrid tribal patterns and masculine plaids. Select a common color to unite them, begin with a daring favorite and complement it with dissimilar, less dominant patterns. Save demure for next spring, now is the time to be bold.
3. Warm Your Metals
Gold, copper, brass — warm metals elevate the style factor this fall, and you’ll find countless ways to make them at home. Here’s how: Look for polished nickel or chrome pieces and swap them out with golden metals. Lamps, metal-framed furniture, shimmering-woven fabrics, small accessories and everyday tableware all offer opportunities to heat up your décor with the season’s hautest metals.
4. Put Some Weight On
Remember when you placed your interior on a summer diet to lighten and brighten its décor? Put it in reverse. This fall, add some weight with hides, textured textiles, grained woods and pottery. Think layers just as you do with your autumn wardrobe. Without creating clutter, stage and stack decorative elements and accessories. Lay a cowhide atop a woven rug, gather decanters on a modern tray and stack books on a table. That should get you started.
5. Toss Pillows (And Throws)
Placing pillows is good. Piling them on is not. The same holds true for throws. To add luxe without adding litter, restraint is key.
6. Go Au Naturel
There’s probably some rule against putting a tumbleweed on your table. Ignore it. Autumn is a living season and offers so much for decking out your décor. Start with the season’s organic materials and natural forms: twigs, seedpods and leaves put a textural twist on decorating as do animal-based accessories like shells, leather and antlers. Gather and mix them with stone, raw wood and iron. Too heavy? Add some glass, shimmering gold or glittering geodes. Each is elemental in its appeal.
7. Hit the Market
Load up on decorative accents during your next trip to the farmers’ market or grocery produce aisle. Fall’s bounty of shapely squash and gourds, fragrant apples an colorful pomegranates make striking delectable displays and are just a few crop-to-tabletop options that capture fall’s beauty with absolute ease and simplicity.
8. Make Scents
Heavier, richer fragrances are back, and we’re behind the movement. We’re not talking whiffs mimicking baked apples, candy canes or caramel corn; your rooms deserve more sophisticated scents. There are many candles, infusers, sprays and potpourris featuring fall’s fuller-bodied, refined natural fragrances.
9. Texture Tone-On-Tone
Monochromatic palettes are back in favor but can seem one-dimensional. Mix in texture and your look goes from flat to all that. Plus, adding texture is an easy way to give a single-colored décor a dose of fall.
10. Hang a Wreath
Imagine this: a hoop that mounts to your door and evokes the festive feel of the season. That’s a wreath, and Natalie Bernhisel-Robinson, owner of Le Fleur Design and author of Living Wreaths (Gibbs Smith $20), crafts them to herald the season for her home and those of her clients.