I admit it. This is my favorite time of year. While friends and family are unabashed lovers of the summer, with its long sunny days, barbecues, and vacations, I wait impatiently each summer for autumn to arrive. This is decorating season. My season. When the days get shorter, and the nights chillier, our attention is brought back indoors. It is the ideal time for bringing the colors of the harvest season into your home, and onto your porch.
When we think of autumn, a small palette of colors springs to mind. Colors like pumpkin, deep gold, and rust. The colors we associate with this season come straight from the harvest. Why not jazz up your traditional fall displays with something unexpected? A deep pumpkin color looks dramatic with an infusion of eggplant or a fresh apple green. Apple red along with the warm gold adds fun to your tabletop display, centerpiece, or porch vignette.
For the dining room table or sideboard, think outside the box. We tend to create and choose table decorations and vignettes that conform to a square or circle shape. Some of the most dramatic tabletop decorating travels down an imaginary center line of the table, and leads your eye to the other end. Tabletop candleholders are popular right now in long horizontal shapes. A simple holder in a dark finish of wood or metal would look wonderful with assorted Autumn-hued silk foliage running casually alongside it. If you love the look of hurricane lamps, use three or four, instead of one, then add your autumn foliage at the bases, for a casual “I just carried this in from the outdoors” look.
Don’t stop yourself after simply decorating a dining room table for the season. Look around your house for other opportunities to celebrate the harvest season. Fall colors can be added with guest towels, kitchen towels, or a bowl of seasonal fruit on your kitchen counter. Guest soaps, lotions, and candles, can be purchased in the delicious scents of autumn. A trio of pumpkins in various sizes, set on your fireplace hearth, gives a cozy feeling. A great visual trick of decorating is to display items in odd numbers, and to vary the size as much as possible. Also, choosing a few larger accessories or decorations, rather than several small ones, makes a stronger statement and gives you less clutter. If you already have a collection of small autumn decorations, display them as a set with one large anchor piece, instead of spreading them around the room, for maximum impact!
Autumn is a wonderful time for decorating your porch. Wonderfully large mums in containers are available at a variety of garden stores and farm stands right now. Don’t be content with a few beautiful plants. Create a vignette. Along with your fall plants, add a ceramic container in a complimentary color (remember those lively greens or a deep eggplant!). An autumn-hued door garland and wreath say, “Welcome.” My favorite fall wreaths have unexpected touches of color, a variety of materials, and sometimes a hint of shimmer. A gorgeous fall wreath with puffs of dried hydrangea, or faux pomegranates stand out on any door. A variety of seasonal doormats are available, as well, to complete the look. If you have been thinking of painting your front door, now is a great time to do it! Choose a color that gives your entry character, and makes a great backdrop for your seasonal decorations. Your front entry should make you smile every time you walk up to your door. Decorating for the seasons is a wonderful tradition that celebrates the change of seasons, and the cycle of life. Happy autumn!