Cozy Up To Autumn
Add autumnal accoutrements and fall-time flourishes to your home this season
Cozy sweaters, warm mugs of cider, and beautiful leaves swirling in the crisp air—oh autumn, we’ve missed you.
Are you ready to embrace the changing of the seasons and put a little fall color into your home? Check out these sensational fall flourishes you can add to your décor this autumn.
Warm it up
Mother Nature is swapping out her summer greens for a wardrobe of warmer hues—why not dress your home in them, as well?
Signal the arrival of autumn like the leaves do—with rich reds, oranges, and yellows. To give some pop, try complementary colors such as russet, gold, or ocher. The bedroom or living room both make great places to start. Blankets and throws, pillows, and coffee table accent pieces are inexpensive, portable articles you can change with the seasons. Other pieces easy to swap out include the artwork on the walls or maybe even the rugs and mats on the floor.
Plaid is rad
Who says you have to pick just one solid color? Plaid is rad—and it’s a perfect cozy pattern for fall.
The Scots were definitely on to something...This cool weather stalwart practically shouts "snuggle up and stay awhile," and is the ideal "comfort fabric" for those chilly days and longer nights.
Try a few toss pillows, or a tartan throw—or even upholster a chair. And, of course, a warm woolen scarf is a great accent.
Want a distinct contrast to the warm reds and oranges elsewhere? Pick a pattern with a vibrant blue or green mixed in.
While the warm weather of the summer inspires linen choices in cool, lightweight materials with airy and tropical colors, the brisk air of fall calls for heavy, durable, warm fabrics awash in rich, deep, earthy hues.
From table runners and coasters to lamp shades and curtains, there are myriad opportunities to transition the textiles in your home from beachy to burlap, from sheer to knit, from light to luxe.
Toss a fleece throw blanket over an armchair, or accent your sofa with cable-knit pillows to give the atmosphere a cozy feel.
Faux fur blankets makes it deliciously decadent curling up next to the fire with a hot toddy and a good book; shearling rugs keep toes toasty when you hop out of bed in the morning and get ready to start your day.
It's the decorator's equivalent of chunky, knit sweaters and warm, wooly stockings for your home!
Pump(kin) up the volume!
While growing and greening are the hallmarks of spring and summertime, life outside in the fall is mostly devoted to hibernating or migrating. But that doesn’t mean your interior floral flair has to suffer!
Rather than using cut flowers in a vase, add visual interest and pops of color with small pumpkins and decorative gourds from your local grocery store or farmers’ market instead.
Squashes and gourds come in a wealth of sizes, shapes, colors, and textures and can go in virtually any room of the house. Miniature pumpkins go great on mantles, bookshelves, and dressers, while medium and larger gourds can add flair to your foyer, front porch, and main living spaces. Don't be afraid to think outside the box (or off the tabletop!): an empty corner can make a great showcase for a vertical display.
Not quite ready to give up the blooms? Make a “mumkin”: hollow out a pumpkin to create a living flowerpot, and place mums or other fall flowers inside.
In addition to gourds and squash, other fall foliage that makes for long-lasting and colorful arrangements include ears of Indian corn, dried seed pods (such as lotus pods, baptisia/false lupine, or locust seeds), and ornamental dried grasses (wheat stalks, cattails, bunny tails, dune grass, or pampas grass).
For bright pops of accent color, try dried pepperberries, dogwood branches, or even sprigs or ropes of dried chili peppers.
Make Scents to Me
Our sense of smell is closely linked to memory and emotion, so taking advantage of it is a great way to instill a sense of homey comfort on a cool evening.
Essential oils in a diffuser or room spray are a natural way to add scent. Some popular varieties include ginger, cassia, nutmeg, and cardamom. Other essential oils to try mixing and matching include tangerine, coriander, black pepper, cedarwood, rosemary, patchouli, vetiver, and juniper berry.
Soaps, candles, or sachets in warm scents like pumpkin spice, apple pie, and cinnamon, or in woodsier, more earthy smells like woodsmoke, tobacco, and spice say “Come in and sit while.”
Another easy way to bring in the scents of fall is a simmer pot: fill a small saucepan with water and add cinnamon sticks, orange rinds, apple slices, and cloves and place it on the stove on low. For a twist, experiment with other less traditional ingredients like vanilla, anise, bay leaves, pear skins or nutmeg. Want a simmer pot with a purpose? Swap wine or cider for the water, add some mulling seasonings, and you'll have a hot beverage that smells AND tastes delicious.
Smells good, looks good, and (maybe) makes you feel good? You must be talking about a pomander (from the French phrase, pomme d'ambre, i.e. apple of amber, referring to ball made of perfumes and hung from a chain).
In folk medicine, pomanders were supposedly able to ward off infection. While this may or may not be the case, they do serve as a wonderful all-natural air freshener.
Stud an apple or an orange with whole cloves and tie with a festive ribbon. Place it in a drawer like a sachet, hang in a doorway, or fill a decorative bowl with them and set them on the table.
There are endless possibilities when it comes to decorating your home for autumn--in ways that appeal to all your senses.
With a bit of creativity and an afternoon’s worth of free time, you can have your home ready for those first crisp afternoons—whether you’re entertaining friends and family or simply relaxing alone curled up by the fire with a book and a mug of mulled cider.