How long do you leave fall decorations up?

Mark your calendars for Dec 1st – this is when to transition from fall to the festive season in style

Halloween table display with candles and branches
(Image credit: Neptune)

How long do you leave fall decorations up? It may seem like a premature question to ask in late September (on the week that marks the official start of the season), but the transition into the festive season is never too far from our minds. 

You currently have every permission to revel in fall decor ideas in all their glory – whether through warm colors, candles, or textiles – and of course, the statement pumpkin. However, while you still have several weeks left to admire these fall trends, it's important to think about the inevitable transition to winter – and all the Christmas decor ideas that come with it.

How long do designers leave fall decorations up? December 1st is generally agreed to be the date. Here, the experts share what they do in their own homes. 

How long do you leave fall decorations up?

Designers recommend keeping your fall decorations up until the first of December. 

A mantlepiece with green leaf garland, small white and orange pumpkins, two lit tapered candles, and a framed illustration of a regency lady

(Image credit: Chris Terry)

Designer Stefan Bucur from Rhythm of the Home says that leaving fall decorations up until December 1st this allows you to celebrate Thanksgiving without too much thought of Christmas.

'They should go up around October 1st... and stay up until around Thanksgiving,' says Washington DC-based designer Ame Gold. 'Fall decor works so well with all the leaves transitioning into the oranges, yellows, and reds and the traditions of pumpkins and squash that you see around Halloween and Thanksgiving,' she adds. However, once Thanksgiving has passed, it is time to transition to Christmas decor ideas

'Once those holidays have passed, the leaves are down, and the days have become short, transitioning into all Christmas décor makes sense,' she adds.

Fall Craft

(Image credit: Future)

Interior designer Grace Baena from Kaiyo agrees. She dresses her tree 'soon after Thanksgiving', so it is a good idea to leave your fall decorations up until 'a day or so' before you shift to Christmas decor.

How do you transition from fall to Christmas decorations? 

Transitioning from fall to Christmas decorations in one day can be time-consuming – especially if you're working with large quantities of kitchen, bedroom, and living room fall decor.

'Making this transition all in one day can not only represent a lot of work, but it can also be a little jarring,' Grace says. Therefore, the designer suggests removing fall decorations after you've recovered from Thanksgiving. 'Wait a day or two, and then put up the tree,' she says. 

The transition between fall and Christmas is far from fluid; however, you can begin to show hints of festivity by incorporating white lights into your fall scheme. This may make the decorating process quicker, and it offers some continuity in your interiors – across the calendar.

Fall wreath ideas with wreath above mantel

(Image credit: Polly Wreford)

If you caught up on when to start fall cleaning (earlier this September), you may already recognize how quickly the month is passing. We're marking December 1st on our calendars right away.

Megan Slack
News Editor

Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.