10 Fall Home Decor Ideas From the Pros

Refresh your home’s aesthetic.

Snag a pumpkin-spice latte and pull out those sweaters: Fall is officially (and finally) here. It’s time for cooler weather, falling leaves and football — and if you ask interior design professionals, for changing up your home decor, too. Have you refreshed your home’s aesthetic since the season turned? If not, read on for 10 pro-approved ways to do it.

Go natural.

Bringing in natural products — especially ones you’ve harvested or grown yourself — is one great way to ring in the fall. As Lee Crowder, national director of design and model experience at homebuilder Taylor Morrison, explains, “I love decorating with natural products. Some of my favorites are pumpkins and potted plants, which last a long time in the fall. Try decorating the entrance to your house or the tablescape in your dining room with natural pumpkins, which you can then compost when you’re done and add them to your garden soil.” Crowder recommends buying green and white pumpkins — both for an on-trend pop and for staying power. “Greens and whites are incredibly trendy, and I pair them with potato vine and ferns,” she says. “They will last all the way through December.”

Let there be light.

In fall, the days get shorter, and natural light starts to wane, making it the perfect time to change up your lighting — both indoor and out. “With the natural light going away earlier in the fall months, it’s nice to bring in some low lighting to draw people into a space and help it feel cozy,” says Amber Dunford, style director at Overstock.com. “String lighting transitions well from dusk to night and sets the right ambiance for a gathering space. Lanterns and candles can also be a nice way to bring in a light source, and they provide a warm flicker where humans are instinctively drawn.” Don’t forget the porch. According to Crowder, it can be a great place to add lighting and a little extra oomph. “I love to pair pumpkins on my porch with large open lanterns,” Crowder says. “Instead of having candles, try a solar or battery-operated candle. It gives you a great flickering candlelight aesthetic but comes on automatically and is heat resistant, so you don’t even have to think about it.”

Change up your textures and fabrics.

Summer is all about light and airy fabrics, and your decor should reflect that. As you ease into the cooler seasons, pros say it’s time to bring in a warmer, cozier touch. “Emphasize chunky blankets and other heavier down items,” says Diana Hathaway, interior designer at Diana Hathaway Home. “Overstuffed pillows, fluffy blankets and candles with natural textures like birch and linen are easy ways to update your home for fall.” Textured fabrics can go particularly well with a fall aesthetic. If you’re not sure which one to go with, Farah Merhi, CEO of Inspire Me Home Decor, recommends boucle — a type of woven fabric that’s very on trend these days. “The No. 1 trend I’m seeing from an upholstery perspective is boucle,” says Merhi, who shares her design ideas with 7.5 million followers on her Instagram account, @Inspire_Me_Home_Decor. “This can be easily incorporated through anything from accent pillows to accent chairs. I also love that this fabric is so versatile. You can make it look glam, casual or anything in between.”

Bring the outside in.

You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to find great home decor — especially in fall. Designers say heading out to your own yard can be a great way to find nods to the season. “One budget-friendly way to bring fall into your house is to forage from your exterior environment and bring a little nature inside — branches from your garden, cuttings from your trees,” says Jade Joyner, co-founder at interior design firm Metal + Petal in Athens, Georgia. Julia Longchamps, founder of Julia Longchamps Design in Maryland, recommends taking a “nature walk” and seeing what speaks to you. “I love clipping branches that are changing colors and putting them into a gorgeous vase,” Longchamps says. “Dried hydrangeas and grass are excellent because they bring warm browns into your home and will stay that way forever — all at no expense to you.”

Warm up your color scheme.

Cool blues and bright whites might work in the summer, but they certainly don’t jibe with fall. According to Chloe Hughes, editor-in-chief of design magazine Foter, this season’s all about the earth tones. “Add textured fabrics such as throw blankets or pillows in rich colors like brown, red or orange,” Hughes says. “Another approach is to focus on natural materials and a neutral color palette with an accent fall color. This can be achieved by incorporating pieces made from wood, stone or other organic materials, then perhaps consider painting a featured wall that reflects the colors of fall, such as deep red or orange. This creates a focal point in your room and adds some seasonal color to your space.”

Prepare for outdoor entertaining.

As the weather cools, you might be eyeing a backyard get-together — maybe a movie night on the projector or a cookout with your neighbors. Whatever the plan, you can set the scene with a few well-placed cozy touches. “To make the most of your outdoor spaces right before a cold winter season, bring out plush blankets and warm decorative throw pillows for outdoor lounging,” says Yasmine El Sanyoura, home designer for Opendoor. “If you’re looking to make the space cozier, hang some string lights and add a few lanterns to warm up the space. If your budget allows it, I recommend adding a portable fire pit as a way to seek out just a little more outdoor time.”

Paint your front door.

One eye-catching way to change up your color scheme is to paint your front door. “As family and friends are visiting your home for holiday gatherings, the front door is their first impression,” says Paula Blankenship, founder and president of Heirloom Traditions Paint. “Having a pop of color can leave a lasting impression and can wow your guests when entering your home.” As for hues, earth tones are always a smart choice in fall, or pick something with a little more contrast. “My instinct pulls me in the direction of deep green based on its contrast to how the leaves change with the season,” says Jessica Harris, manager of production design at Living Spaces Furniture. “I also feel connected to brown, either a paint treatment or stain to add warmth and earthiness. Both colors add depth and moodiness. They also both act as a great neutral and can be layered with a wreath or greenery.”

Create layers.

Layering is another great way to make a space cozier, particularly as the weather cools. It might mean layering blankets on your bed, making sure to mix up fabrics, textures and hues, or layering throw pillows and other accents on your couch, chair or window seat. According to Joyner, you can even look to the floor for opportunities. “I layer my rugs, which creates a lot of depth and warmth in my space,” she says.

Change up your tablescape.

Creating a new, nature-inspired centerpiece is one strategy to bring your kitchen into fall. For this, dried flowers can be an option. “This is a perfect way to add a natural element to your home without breaking the bank,” Joyner says. “These low-maintenance floral arrangements are great if you have a garden with any flowers that are seasonal. Once it’s time to give them a trim, pick the flowers of your choice and prepare to dry them. If you’d rather skip the drying process yourself, you can purchase already-dried florals from your local florist.” You can also purchase fall-themed wrapping paper to update your tablescape. Crowder recommends cutting it up and using it as table runners or placemats. “Using something like wrapping paper or wallpaper allows for a little more flexibility and creativity,” Crowder says. “You can use it, and if it gets messed up or someone spills, you can add some more and it’s not something you have to store or even love forever.”

Update your gallery wall.

If you have a gallery wall, a new season is the perfect time to update it. You can add new family photos (maybe from that Thanksgiving football game last year) or update it with some seasonal artwork. “Instead of keeping the static photos that are more traditional, maybe you switch out the art in the frames with a fun Halloween or fall print or fun memories from holidays past,” Crowder says. If you’re on a budget, you can look to thrift stores for affordable art. Wallpaper and wrapping paper are options, too, and El Sanyoura says, you can even download prints from the web to hang. “Find downloadable artwork with rich earth tones to replace the art you already have framed around your home,” she says. “Earth tones are warm and inviting, making them perfect as the temperatures drop.”

Here are 10 fall home decor ideas from the pros:

— Go natural.

— Let there be light.

— Change up your textures and fabrics.

— Bring the outside in.

— Warm up your color scheme.

— Prepare for outdoor entertaining.

— Paint your front door.

— Create layers.

— Change up your tablescape.

— Update your gallery wall.

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10 Fall Home Decor Ideas From the Pros originally appeared on usnews.com

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