As fall approaches, your decor should subtly shift, too. But transitioning your space for the colder months can be tricky if you are unprepared.
While it can be tempting to consider ostentatious fall decor – plenty of pumpkins and various shades of orange – more curated fall decorating ideas will take your space from kitsch to cozy in moments.
Whether you choose home ideas with a warm color scheme, standout centerpiece or layers of texture and pattern, fall decorating is all about creating an inviting retreat for you and your family. And even though many fall decor ideas can be applied to other times of year, there is something remarkable about cozy additions that counteract the crisp, cold weather outside.
Fall decor ideas
Keep reading for seasonal design tips influenced by our favorite fall decor ideas.
1. Lay down a rug
If you can only add one item to your fall decor ideas, an area room rug is an excellent choice.
One of the easiest ways to add color, warmth and texture to your room this fall is to introduce a versatile – and easily changeable – rug. More flexible than a carpet or other form of fixed floor-covering, rugs and runners offer a fantastic way to soften a hard stone, tiled or timber floor, and can also be layered onto soft floors to provide extra interest or to define zones. And, when it comes to style, it can add a whole layer of personality to any room, even in the kitchen.
‘Think of your rug as a piece of art for your floor,' says Linny Moss, creative director of Knots Rugs. 'More people are being adventurous with their rug choices and seeing them as investment pieces that will match beautifully with your existing interiors.'
2. Decorate with subtle variations of brown
Brown living room ideas are wonderful for fall. This season sees a return to simple, restrained palettes – and being close to nature has moved from greens of the forest to a soft, neutral palette of fossil tones, raw materials and natural elements, such as stone, textures of cotton and linen with soft earthy browns, warm terracotta and clay putty tones as a contrast.
The nuances of brown are often underplayed but one look at this living room fall decor shows how complex and interesting the often overlooked shade can be. Deeper than ochre and earthier than gold, this rich yet understated tone strikes a refined note in the living room.
3. Dress you table for seasonal entertaining
If you're hosting the Thanksgiving feast this year, you likely have a lot on your to-do list, and between carving the turkey and baking the pumpkin (or pecan) pie, setting the table should be high on your priority list.
If you are a traditionalist at heart, choose a selection of simple yet timeless decorations that you can use every year. A selection of glassware, foliage and candles should be enough to satisfy most of us.
However, Thanksgiving often calls for plenty of seasonal color – think burnt orange, mustard yellows and a warming taupe palette. If you really want to stay true to tradition, a pinecone fall table centerpiece is a must – and why not throw in a gourd or two.
4. Bring fall into your foyer
Picked from the garden patch or found in farm shops aplenty, pumpkins, gourds and squashes are a great starting point for creating a seasonal display in the hallway and beyond.
Often associated with Thanksgiving decorating and Halloween celebrations, the humble pumpkin is not just a kitchen staple at this time of year, it is also ideal to display in the home, especially on entrance. Pile them up on a console, sideboard or lone chair for an authentic fall welcome.
5. Gather around an outdoor fire pit
Let the good times roll with outdoor fireplace ideas that will keep everyone cozy outside even when the temperature drops.
Setting up an enclosed seating area around a fire pit, log-burning brazier or chiminea is a tried-and-tested way of adding the cozy factor to your outdoor fall decor this fall. As well as warmth, the fire will add extra light and can be used for seasonal treats, such as toasting marshmallows or warming mulled wine.
It might seem rather ambitious, but with the heat of an outdoor fire pit, you can start to enjoy your backyard all year round.
6. Hibernate at home in a cozy living space
Cozy living room ideas are pretty much top of most people's lists at the moment – for obvious reasons, when you consider that the most used space in a home is the living space. Living room fall decor should be functional and, above all, comfortable – particularly if all you crave is a soothing space to unwind in at the end of a busy day.
'Flexibility is key – eclectic furniture and notable accessories not only make your home more welcoming, they're a great way to express your personality,' says Sam Baldry, head of design at Swoon.
‘We’re seeing a lot more terracotta, clay and rust colors coming through this fall,’ explains Charlie Marshall, founder of Loaf. ' These tones are ideally suited to a country setting, and can be softened with neutral off-white living room paint ideas as a backdrop.'
7. Warm up with hot shades
In a cool bedroom – or one that you want to feel warm and welcoming – red is a great choice.
'Red has become enduringly popular lately – and is a very stimulating shade. In this palette, it also represents the moment during exercising when you are at the top of your game,' according to trend forecasters, TrendBook.
'This bedroom color idea was inspired by the already evident success of orange. It is the extroverted color for the fall season, and when paired with green – the color of tranquility – it represents the full cycle of the season.'
8. Introduce a sepia-toned gallery wall
An eclectic, reddish-brown gallery wall with mismatched frames and art is the perfect recipe for fall. This gentle fall color scheme will add a sophisticated elegance and a refinement to any room in your home, and is a go-to for anyone who wants an easy-to-live with tone that will go with almost any other color, even beyond fall and winter.
‘Sepia tones are a decorating staple – and can be combined in both classical and contemporary decoration with ease and elegance,' says Ruth Mottershead, creative director at Little Greene.
9. Hang a wreath on your front door
The humble wreath is one of the most versatile fall decorating tools at your disposal come this season.
For an eye-catching front door wreath, group the same type of foliage together to create clear sections. Mix dried foliage, grasses or flowers, with sections of fresh greenery like eucalyptus and fresh herbs such as thyme, sage or rosemary.
Restrict your colors to red, brown and faded greens for a true fall feel, but if bright hues are more to your taste, dried foliage comes in a whole host of bright shades which are perfect for a color-filled version.
10. Introduce year-round interest with ornamental grasses
Ornamental grasses bring movement and sound to the garden, and carry color and interest through to fall and winter. They are the ideal solution to early-fall doldrums: as summer flowers fade, their subtly colored foliage and sprays of tiny flowers will take center stage if you are planning a winter garden.
Ornamental grasses are surprisingly easy to grow, no matter the condition of your garden – or the time of year. What's more, evergreen varieties give year-round cover and little room for the unwanted plant invaders to squeeze through. Plus they have see-through, wispy growth that take on a magical quality when gilded with spider’s webs and frost.
When should you start decorating for fall?
Generally speaking, early to late September is the best time to start decorating for fall. It is recommended that you avoid decorating for fall before this date, otherwise your indoor and outdoor fall decor ideas won't be in sync with the seasons.
Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space.
Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.
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