The minute the first fall leaf hits the ground, patrons of the interior design world–like werewolves on a full moon–shapeshift into their most authentic selves.
Wait, it’s not Halloween… yet. And for most of us, we’re still acclimating to the monstrous list of tasks, appointments, and responsibilities that the fall brought on. The new season is our favorite excuse to make little changes throughout our homes. Light summer neutrals transition into harvest hues. Fabrics become cozier. Warmth is finally something to be celebrated. In this guide, learn a few Havenly designer-approved strategies to refresh your home (and your life) for the fall.
Preparing for the fall takes planning and possibly, a PSL. Oat milk, anyone? With falling leaves and pumpkin harvests come changing schedules, extracurriculars, parent-teacher conferences, and pointless potlucks that, frankly, you won’t be attending. So, it’s important that, regardless of what fall brings to your day-to-day, your home is ready to embrace it. Organizing your home to adhere to your fall lifestyle is essential, and the first step is getting rid of all those summer staples and then some.
First thing’s first: take a full inventory of your home and identify items that look lost, out of place, or scream “summer.” This includes spring/summer decor, kitchenware that doesn’t have use in the winter and that pair of flip-flops that inhabited your entryway months ago. Sweep of your home for areas that seem to foster all of the things that you don’t need or don’t know what to do with. And yes, it’s time to face that junk drawer once and for all.
Decluttering is much easier with a few storage solutions here and there. A functional coffee table or closed shelving unit is the perfect way to hide the things that you don’t want to see, but the secret’s in the purging. Really, just throw it out… or donate! Look to organizational mastermind Marie Kondo for inspiration on what’s a “yes” and what’s a “no” by asking yourself, “Does this bring me joy?” Then, decide if you’ll actually use it, whatever ‘it’ is. If this seems like a daunting task, try tackling these traditionally unorganized areas of the house first.
From the mudroom to the bathroom, there are always a few areas in need of a little sprucing up. Consider how your daily rhythms change this time of year and carve out spaces that allow you to settle into new routines. We have a few ideas.
School is back in session, and if you have kids, your home probably looks like the school supplies aisle at Target: utterly disorganized. Rid yourself of the rainbow folders and glitter gel pens once and for all by locating a quiet, open space and transform it into a study nook by adding a simple desk, chair, and storage solution.
There’s no denying that a hot drink on a cold day just feels right. Warm up and speed up your morning by creating a space designated for that perfect cup of coffee or tea, if that’s more your cup of tea. Organize your coffee beans, K-cups, tea bags, sugars, syrups, creams–even set your favorite mug out for a little added personality and, of course, to be ready for any caffeine emergencies.
One of the most utilized spaces in the home–especially in the winter–is the entryway. Cold weather presents great opportunity to transform your entryway into something beautiful, functional and welcoming. Try any combination of the following to give your home a wow-factor right off the bat:
- Coat rack
- Table/Cabinet/Shelving unit
- Seating solution–benches work well
- Shoe rack/tray
- Basket (for umbrellas and other miscellaneous items)
Not sure what suits you best? More on these below.
Optimizing a few key spaces for what the cold weather brings is essential. Jackets, coats, umbrellas, and boots must be readily accessible. If a closet isn’t in your cards, invest in a coat rack for a smooth snag when you’re running out the door. A shelving unit or hooks near your entryway is a good idea for anything that needs to hang tight between errands.
Shoes can be a hassle to manage when sandals are no longer the norm, especially when your lifestyle calls for a few outfits per day. We’re talking to the moms out there. Shoe baskets, racks, trays or cubbies will keep the elements out of your element. Plus, creating a one-stop-shop for when it’s time to leave the house can shave off minutes from your kids’ get-out-the-door routine, making the impossible possible: extra time for yourself.
With small functional changes come great opportunities to enhance your design concept. All of the suggestions above are relatively low maintenance, meaning you have more time (and money) to spend on the details. Think about ways you can transition your color palette and style from summer to fall when searching for these small functional pieces. This can mean integrating accent colors and textures or adding a statement piece, like a seasonally-appropriate piece of art. Don’t get overwhelmed, though. There’s much more to say on fall design, and we’re just getting started.
Now, for the fun part. Everyone’s style differs significantly. No matter your preferences, we rally behind a common goal during the fall: keeping things cozy. Literally and figuratively, it’s important to warm things up during cooler months. This doesn’t mean new furniture or completely reinventing your style. As mentioned, there’s power in the details.
First thing’s first, shift your color scheme from light summer tones to richer, moodier shades. Let earthy browns, deep oranges and reds, and golden yellows can replace bright or pastel accent colors. Lighter tones on the same warm palette, such as taupe and other organic neutrals, will help keep your home feeling crisp but snug.
One step not to miss when preparing your home for the fall is adding texture–especially to areas that call for a little extra sense of coziness. Layering textures is one way to hone in on the theme of warmth, providing visual interest while helping to fill otherwise empty spaces more thoroughly. Natural textures, such as wood, burlap, wicker and terracotta complement warmer tones. Go full-glam by adding leather, suede and/or faux fur. Items such as pillows, throws, towels and other fabrics are easy opportunities to integrate seasonally-inspired textures into each room of your home.
Let’s be clear about one thing: decorating your home for fall does not involve fake cobwebs or a smoke machine. There’s nothing wrong with a few pumpkins here or there, but remember: Halloween and fall are not interchangeable (and one lasts way longer than the other). If you decide to get festive, October is your time to shine.
Each room has a few staples that are easily replaceable season-by-season. In the bedroom, experiment with heavier bedding and chunky throws in the cooler months–makes sense, right? Pillows also provide an easy opportunity to switch up your style. In the bathroom, your shower curtain, bath mat and towel set are key items to consider when executing your fall aesthetic. When it comes to living areas, pillows and throws are still great options to swap out. Curtains, while costly, can also be a huge influencer of a room’s ambiance. While linen fabrics work well in the spring and summer, polyester, cotton or even velvet are more appropriate for the other half of the year.
Pro-Tip: Engineer a full sensory experience with aromatherapeutic solutions. Oil diffusers are the must-have accessory. With essential oils on the market such as pine, clove, sandalwood, and more, you’ll be sure to take your fall ambiance to the next level.
Still not sure what speaks to you? Take our style quiz today to hone in on your personal design tastes for the fall.