5 ways to make your house smell like fall

The season of rich spices and warming recipes is here – this is how to create a space that smells as good as it looks

Oatmeal linen napkin, Piglet in Bed
(Image credit: Piglet in Bed)

Fall is synonymous with soul-soothing scents – from classic aromas like pumpkin pie and spiced apple cider – to more atmospheric staples such as incense. 

Few seasons have the power to provoke our sense of smell quite like this one, so it is only inevitable that you will want to accentuate their goodness further by investing in scented candles and diffusers and making a timely simmer pot. 

Knowing how to make your home smell nice is a welcome lesson at any point of the calendar, but there is something about fall that makes it feel even more desirable. Whether you're planning an intimate dinner gathering (or thinking ahead to this year's thanksgiving party ideas) or you simply want to create a therapeutic space for all who live in your home – these designer-approved tips are the solution.

5 ways to make your house smell like fall

Fall-inspired scents are among the best home fragrances you can buy, and all for a good reason. Here's how to indulge in the remaining weeks of fall – the professional way.

1. Invest in scented candles 

gallery wall of vintage plates arranged round a mirrored candle sconce

(Image credit: Jody Stewart)

It may seem like the obvious starting point, but choosing one of the best candles on the market is a failsafe way to elevate your home instantly. 

No matter what the rest of your fall decorating ideas may look like, there is one home accessory that unites us all – and that is the versatile candle. 'My favorite way to make my home smell like fall is with a super luxurious scented candle,' agrees Kathy Kuo, the founder, and CEO of Kathy Kuo Home

'Home fragrance can be so personal and make such a statement, so I advise you to invest in high-quality candles made with premium materials and with a high level of design for the vessel,' she explains.

'You’ll really be able to smell the different layers to the fragrance of the candle, and they’re sure to last longer and serve as a true piece of home decor. When it comes to fall scents especially, I love vetiver and moss, wood smoke, bergamot, and amber.'

2. Mix a simmer pot 

kitchen with wooden cooker hood blue and white patterned tiles and stainless steel oven with pot filler

(Image credit: Karen B Wolf Interiors/Raquel Langworthy)

Few scent-boosting methods are quite as powerful as a simmer pot, nor are any quite as cost-friendly. 

'This is a simple way to bring the fall smells to your home, and what is even more exciting is that you can create your signature scent,' says Jennifer Lynn, the CEO of Jennifer Lynn Interiors

The designer recommends experimenting with various items to curate a smell that will be familiar to your home – whether you use cinnamon sticks, orange or lemon peels, cranberries, pines, or vanilla – to name but a few. 

'Then, to top it off, you can add some key ingredients with a recipe card and give it as hostess gifts at Thanksgiving,' Jennifer adds. 

3. Create a pomander ball 

Pomander Ball

(Image credit: GettyImages)

Pomander balls are arguably the most aesthetically pleasing way to make your house smell like fall, especially if you're dressing your kitchen or dining table. Essentially, these are oranges with cloves that you arrange in decorative patterns, adding a hint of individuality in the process. But what does the method involve? 

Kristin Patricican, the owner and principal designer of Dwelling Envy Interiors, starts by poking the orange with a needle or toothpick to break the skin, which will make sticking the clove through the rind much easier.

'The whole process is relatively easy, and the scent created is festive and delicious. The more skilled you are, the more decorative you can get with your cloves – adding them to your dining table centerpieces [and dining table decor ideas].'

4. Use an essential oil diffuser 

White Company diffuser sale

(Image credit: Future)

If you're particularly weary of open flames in your home or you're living with young children, it's likely that you've already found the best reed diffuser for you. However, there is no better time to be a new convert – with a host of fall-inspired scents to enjoy – the main question is not whether to invest – but which one is best for your home. 

'Essential Oil Diffusers are another great way to add scents to a home, especially for fall,' Kristin emphasizes. 'There are so many companies that create signature fall scents, it's hard to choose which is our favorite.'

However, it's important to note that if you're living with pets, you may need to tread with caution, as some oils can be toxic to cats, dogs, and other animals. 

5. Burn incense  

Top down view on lingonberries in a bowl and on a spoon, linen tablecloth, incense and candlestick on wooden table in bright sunlight

(Image credit: GettyImages)

The time-honored ritual of burning incense is the most spiritual way to fill your home with scent, and it's also one of the strongest methods – as one stick can go a significantly long way. It is unsurprising; therefore, that it is approved by aromatherapist Jennie Koeper

The expert suggests finding a fall scent that appeals to you – and choosing incense made from plants instead of artificial fragrance. 'Stick, cone, and loose incense are all popular.'

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.