How long do you leave fall decorations up? We ask the experts

Wondering when to transition from fall to festive decor in your home? Designers agree that December first is the date to mark in your diary

How long do you leave fall decorations up?. Afloral fall foliage on mantel
Pictured: Afloral Plum Fake Cimicifuga Ramosa Leaves
(Image credit: Afloral)

Many of us embrace the switch from summer to fall by decorating our homes in cozy seasonal decor, but how long do you leave fall decorations up?

We've already established that you should start decorating for fall with fall decor ideas at the beginning of October, but what about Christmas decor ideas?

The first of December is generally agreed to be the perfect time to make the transition. For many, this date marks the countdown to Christmas, so what better way to celebrate than swapping your decorating ideas from fall to festive. Here, design experts share what they do in their own homes.

How long do you keep fall decorations up?

Fall wreath ideas with wreath above mantel

(Image credit: Polly Wreford)

Keeping fall decorations up until December 1st not only allows for you to enjoy the fall season for a good amount of time, it also means you can celebrate Thanksgiving without too much thought of Christmas.

'Fall decor should go up around October first 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 for Halloween decorating ideas and Thanksgiving decorating ideas. Once Thanksgiving has passed, it is then time to start thinking about your Christmas decor ideas.'

Brand director at Kaiyo, Grace Baena, also agrees and says she dresses her tree 'soon after Thanksgiving, so it is a good idea to leave your fall decorations up until Thanksgiving has passed, you can then shift to Christmas decor.'

We further explore when should I put my Christmas tree  in our dedicated feature.

Ame Gold
Ame Gold

Ame Gold is the principle designer of Ame Gold Design. For over two decades, Ame has earned a widespread reputation for serving as a DC-based leader in full-scope luxury interior design. After graduating from VCU design school, she worked in Old Town, Alexandria for an interior design firm while honing her skills. In 1999, Ame joined her mother's design firm and subsequently launched Ame Gold Design in 2020.

Grace Baena
Grace Baena

Grace Baena is a brand director at NYC-based sustainable furniture retailer, Kaiyo, and has extensive creative experience in the interior design and lifestyle sector. 

How do you transition from fall to festive decorations?

Green drinks trolley with festive foliage hanging above, cozy armchair, artwork on walls


Changing from fall to Christmas decorations in one day can be time-consuming – especially if you have large quantities of decorations to switch-up across your whole home.

'Making this transition all in one day can not only represent a lot of work, but it can also be a little jarring,' says Grace Baena. 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 a fixed process; it is always such a busy time of year, so your decor can be switched in one day or over the course of a week or so – it all depends on how many decorations you have and how many rooms you need to tackle. Remember, putting up seasonal decorations can be a fun and memorable time, so try to enjoy it as much as you can and do what works for you and your lifestyle.

Hopefully you're festive decorations will be packed away in an organized manner, making your decorating process that little bit easier. For some top tips, we asked how professional organizers store Christmas decorations in our dedicated feature.

Shop fall decor

Shop festive decor

Now you know when to swap your fall decorations for festive ones, ensure to explore our guide on pre-Christmas cleaning (just like our fall cleaning checklist) – you'll thank us for reminding you to complete these cleaning tasks before the busy festive period gets underway.

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. 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.

With contributions from