Can you believe it’s over? Summer is done…finished for the year. I know Autumn has it’s nice points too…it’s just that I wished summer lasted longer. Say, six months longer. I’ll admit that it is kind of nice to cozy up the home, cook soups, wrap up in sweaters. Autumn brings out my nesting instinct. I want to make sure that we’re prepared for the winter. And let’s not forget the pumpkin pie. So there you go, every season has it’s good points.
To celebrate the beginning of the Fall, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite decorating items. The days are going to get colder and darkness will come earlier whether we like it or not. Here are a few products and ideas that will make the good-bye to summer easier.
I’m loving these electric candles from Home Outfitters. They are the real deal. Pop in one AA Battery and turn on the candle at the time you want it to come on every night. It has an automatic five hour shut off. It’s Candle Heaven. Let me give you the back story. My mom, smart woman that she is, has used these for ages. Years ago she gave me a set. I loved them…and so did the boys. They were little then. They couldn’t leave them alone. The candles were exciting and magic and had batteries. My candles lasted about 9 months and then they didn’t work and were cracked and dirty and very well used. This summer I found these at Home Outfitters and now I’m back in the game. The boys think they’re pretty cool, but they don’t feel the need to play with them. Sigh…they grow up so fast.
This is a beauty. West Elm’s Horizontal Double Rib Throw retails for $79. It’s 44×56 inches of hand knit gorgeousness. Of course it’s not the only game in town. You might already own a couple. Haul them out. Put your throws in baskets, layer on chairs and sofas. Keep them in sight for easy reach on when you’re feeling chilly.
Wood Cookies are simply slices of trees. They have been used in classrooms and research stations for years to chart tree growth and look at drought and fire patterns. Now they’re showing up for decorating. Chapters and Indigo carry a nice selection and they retail starting at $19.99. If you’re the chain-saw-take-down-a-tree type of person, it’s not that hard to make your own.
Use them to display oil and vinegars by the stove, act as a tray to hold a set of (electric) candles, or perfume bottles on a dresser.
Adding some wooden elements for fall really ups the texture quotient in your home. Chapters and Indigo also have a good selection of wooden bowls and wood/marble cutting boards.
Have you been to Michael’s craft store lately? It’s full of leaves and pumpkins and big gorgeous sunflowers. It’s super inspiring. At this time of the year, it’s nice to have some handcrafted pieces in your home. The harvest season is an easy time to let loose creatively. It’s also nice for kids to help out and feel pride in crafting something. Wreaths made of colourful leaves or a basket full of fall florals aren’t that difficult to put together. Even little hands can wrap a candle with cinnamon sticks (pic below).
Bringing some of the outdoors inside is an easy, inexpensive way to decorate a home. It can be as simple as cutting a few branches from a backyard tree and putting them in a vase. I have always loved making little centrepieces out of natural bits. Start easy and just fill up a pretty bowl with leaves and crabapples. Gorgeous!
Throughout my years of being the owner of a store, I’ve come across a lot of candles…the good, the bad and the ugly. We were always on the search for candles that burned well and maintained a true scent when burning. After years of research, the very best Autumn fragrance I found is Spiced Pumpkin from Yankee Candle. It was the #1 seller at my store. It comes in votive size for a few dollars, all the way up to large jar candles in the thirty dollar range.
If we’re preparing for winter, that means it’s time to bring out the books. Last week I did an entire blog post on Decorating with Books (here) – that’s how important we think books are to a home. Colder weather means spending more time inside, so display your books with pride and enjoy looking through them.
To bring a warm snuggly feeling to your home, switch out to wintery cushions. Plaid, paisley and darker colours look good for the colder months. Some people keep an entire set of new cushions and do a change-over. If that’s too much, you can just add one or two new ones. Velvet, wool and felt are good fabrics to use for winter. Ikea and Chapters sell cushion covers so you don’t have to replace the entire cushion.
Adding one or two seasonal items is a nice tradition. Right now Superstore has some cute decorating pieces. I’m not saying to junk up your home, but having a special piece that you bring out every year is a nice way to mark the seasons. My boys like it when I do this. Every Autumn we put out our little ceramic pheasant and display the acorns we picked up on a Fall weekend trip to Kelowna. There’s something safe and comforting in being predictable.
My favourite linens have always been the vibrant prints of April Cornell. She has been designing for almost 40 years and years ago I sold her linens at my store. Now her products are available on-line at aprilcornell.ca. Her Autumn 2015 collection is full of gorgeous colours that make me drool. Great thing about collecting her linens is that they can be mixed and matched from year to year. I still have a few cloths from 20 years ago.
Happy Autumn everyone. I hope you get cozy this Fall and take time to enjoy the warmth and peace of your home. If you want a few ideas on how to make your home look fresh for Fall, check out my blog post on How to keep Warm Colours Looking Fresh.
We’ll have another new blog post next Sunday. Don’t forget that you can sign up below to receive my blogs directly to your inbox once a week.
Karen Fron Design is a full-service Interior Design Firm located in Calgary, Alberta. We specialize in bespoke residential & commercial interiors, custom furniture & draperies, and whole home renovations.
“A well functioning and beautiful home makes life better.”