By Cat Queen
The best fall looks are all about warm hues, natural materials, and soft, golden light. Haystacks, pumpkins, and scarecrows are classic front porch pieces but too much of any of these can easily turn your seasonal decorating plan into a busy, kitschy mess. Follow these tips to recreate the simple allure of a cool autumn day, starting with your front porch!
Even if you don’t have room for rocking chairs and antique wagons, you can transform your front porch into an autumn wonderland with a few simple pieces. Let the colors and textures of fall inspire you. Flowers in warm oranges, bright yellows, and deep reds evoke the natural beauty of the season. Choose plants that do well in cooler weather like mums, pansies, and coneflowers, which will look beautiful planted together. Terracotta pots or rustic wooden baskets are the perfect choice for colorful, seasonal container gardens.
Pumpkins are probably the most popular choice for fall décor, but hard-shell and ornamental gourds can also be used to add color and texture. Place in clusters leading up your steps or beside your welcome mat. More narrow entrances will look better with fewer pieces—one small pumpkin on each step will do the trick.
To achieve a traditional, Americana look, use natural materials that allude to our nation’s rich agricultural history. Capture the simple essence of the harvest season with scarecrows, hay, and dried ears of corn, but remember: less is more. Plaid flannel accents—whether on a scarecrow’s shirt, a lightly frayed table cloth, or a wreath’s ribbon—are a nice touch.
If you can find them, antique farm crates or wooden wagons make gorgeous statement pieces. They can also be used as planters, accented with gourds, or even stacked with hay to create rough, stylish side tables.
Bring the whole look together with a simple autumn wreath. You can purchase beautiful wreaths at home decorating stores or make your own! Wreaths make great do-it-yourself projects and are easy enough for beginners; you can even get your kids involved. To create a classic fall display for your front door, simply add faux leaves to a grapevine or rattan wreath and affix small decorative gourds to complete the look. You can even add the first letter of your surname to give it a more personal touch.
Perhaps you’re looking for a twist on classic fall styles. Don’t be afraid to stray from traditional autumn colors. For a modern alternative, paint several different types of decorative gourds and pumpkins in the same shade of soft white. You can even use painted leaves, pine cones, and twigs to add more texture and variety.
Autumn is truly the time of year for pared-down, natural design. Avoid overdoing your décor by keeping it as simple as possible. The beauty of the season is that fall displays can work from the first sign of changing leaves on through early winter. Add a jack-o’-lantern at Halloween or a cornucopia for Thanksgiving and you’re all set!