Guest Contributor: Lee K. Crowder | Design Gallery and Model Home Branding Manager, Taylor Morrison and Darling Homes.
Let the whole neighborhood know that it’s officially autumn at your house. Unlike Christmas, decking the halls for fall can be easily and quickly done. In fact that harvest vibe that works in September can carry you all the way through Halloween and on to Thanksgiving with just a few tweaks. After all, the same warm color palette and most of the motifs are appropriate. And, with today’s busy pace of life, who has time to redecorate every month? To help you get started, here are a few of my favorite fast, simple tips to decorate your house for fall. They’re perfect for new homes in Houston, new condos in Florida and new townhomes in Atlanta, or anywhere else for that matter.
Front Porch, Front and Center
- Think outside the craft box. Not only will you achieve a unique look, you’ll save money, too. Head for the local feed store and buy a few corn stalks (three should do the trick). They aren’t expensive and they’re quite sturdy. Best of all, they’re already dried, so they’ll last a long time and hold up to Summer weather than can wilt fresh foliage. I usually put one stalk on each side of our front door and use the other at the mailbox. Keep the natural theme going. Use a few pumpkins (more about them in a minute) and a burlap ribbon to keep them standing up straight. When Halloween comes, swap out one or two of the uncut pumpkins for Jack-o-Lanterns. On November 1, put the uncut pumpkins front and center again.
- If you want to go a step further, put a simple corn husk wreath on the front door. Tie on a small bunch of miniature Indian corn and a simple bow for more color. Wreath ideas are all over the Internet to provide inspiration and instructions.
- Even simpler than the wreath is a swag made out of a few extra leaves from your corn stalks and that same bunch of Indian corn.
Embrace the Big Orange Squash
Pumpkins are, hands down, your best fall decorating buddy. They’re available in abundance beginning in mid-September. Uncut, they can last all the way to December. But if they start to show signs of fading, they’re fairly inexpensive, especially the old-fashioned orange ones. But, please don’t think you have to stop at orange. Pumpkins come in nearly every color of the rainbow and then some. Go for it! The more varied the size and the odder the shapes, the better. Look for white, green, purple and multicolored versions. Increasingly, stores are offering a variety of sizes and shapes, as well. There are pumpkins with warts, pumpkins that look like Cinderella’s carriage, itty-bitty pumpkins and pumpkins you’ll need a pick-up truck and a couple friends to manage. Also, here are simple steps to keep your uncut pumpkin from rotting before its time.
- Pick a pumpkin with stem intact and no soft spots.
- Wipe it down with a weak solution of household bleach and water, about a tablespoon of bleach to a gallon of water. That will clean bacteria.
- Protect it all over with a spray sealant. Most arts and crafts stores carry several brands.
- The less direct sunlight the pumpkin gets, the longer it will last.
Add Fall Flowers
If you have flower beds in your front yard or containers on your front porch, now is the time to refresh them for fall. Mums are great choice. They come in a variety of colors and are easy to add to your existing plantings and pots.
Tidy Up Before Winter Storms Come
As fun as it is to decorate, do your prep work. Now is the time for some good old-fashioned maintenance. Power wash the front porch, add mulch to your beds. Black mulch, by the way, is a great way to modernize your flower beds and make them feel fall-ready.
Let’s Go Inside
If easy and versatile are your goals, your decorating approach indoors should be the same as it was outside. Natural products used as decorations add fall color without a lot of fuss, and they’ll last even longer because they aren’t exposed to the elements. This year at our house I’m doing all green and white pumpkins. I love to find really special ones with beautiful stems that can be front and center on my mantles. The green and white scheme also works well with those trendy succulents. Added bonus: green and white pumpkins have harder shells and will outlast the pumpkin season.
I love creating a tablescape for my dining table in the early fall and letting it serve as the showcase for Thanksgiving dinner. Hey, Thanksgiving cooking and entertaining is stressful enough. An all-purpose tablescape is one less thing to deal with. Just refresh anything that’s looking droopy. This year I plan to take that white pumpkin idea a step further. Each place setting will have a succulent planted in a small white pumpkin. Then I’ll just add some eucalyptus for texture and gold candle sticks for special sparkle.
Find Your Holiday Home
Find a home worthy of your fall decorating skills. We have two ways you can start your search for new Taylor Morrison homes, including many that are ready right now. Visit our homepage or our Find Your Home page.
Take Care of the Home You Have
All your decorations will look better when you keep up on routine maintenance. For additional home care tips, visit these links.