Are you looking to add some seasonal touches to your home as chilly days approach but abhor having a lot of clutter around? Lots of us enjoy adding a few decorative touches, but we just don’t want to add a lot of fuss and frou-frou to our homes. If that’s you, then follow these four principles to add clutter-free fall decor to your home.
Fall seems to be a season that evokes strong emotions. Most people either love it or hate it. Generally, it’s the summer lovers who dread the arrival of fall because it signals cooler days ahead. But for those who enjoy a chill in the air, fall is our favorite season.
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Does Decorating Have to Increase Clutter?
First off, just let me state that I think that home decorating often becomes a big competition.
There’s pressure to decorate for every season and holiday. And I used to be a participant.
I had decorations for Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and of course, Christmas.
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Needless to say I had a LOT of stuff I had to store the rest of the year! That meant that a lot of space was tied up with storage bins. It finally all got to be too much and I said, “No more!”
I went through my stash of decorations and did some serious weeding. I took all of the decorations that weren’t Christmas and took them to school where I told my teacher friends to help themselves – call it a decoration swap but where I went home with exactly what I wanted…less stuff.
However, I still want my home to look nice all year.
My decorating these days doesn’t revolve around holiday specific items. Rather I change up the look of my home by changing out items that we use naturally anyway. I’ve found that by focusing on four basic ideas I’m able to add touches that I enjoy, that don’t add a lot of fussiness or leave me with lots of stuff I have to store the rest of the year.
4 Clutter-Free Decorating Principles For Fall
In a nutshell, here are the things I focus on when it’s time to change up the decor and prepare for the fall season:
- Look for items that add warmth
- Focus on elements from nature
- Add items that feel cozy
- Sprinkle in traditional fall smells
What kind of items add warmth to our homes?
When I’m looking to add warmth, I look primarily at color and texture.
This when I pull out any items that have touches of brown, orange, rust, or gold in them.
Something as simple as changing out your kitchen towels and hot mats can immediately make your home feel decorated and you’ve only brought out things that you’re going to use anyway.
Likewise, changing out any bath towels or table linens will give you the same effect.
I also love baskets and have several sitting around in my house. Since I don’t want to add more stuff, I simply rearrange the baskets I’ve already got to give them a little more prominence. When I’m ready to lighten the house up for spring, the baskets take a backseat again and get pushed to a less noticeable spot in the house.
Ways to bring nature inside
The nice thing about adding some natural elements is that you don’t have to purchase anything if you don’t want to (and most of us already have enough stuff). You can simply go outside and do a little scrounging for things that you’d eventually rake up and dispose of anyway.
- Gather some leaves to display in a wooden bowl or strung with string across a fireplace or section of a wall
- Bring in some longer sticks or branches to arrange in a vase you already own
- Enjoy a roaring fire in the fireplace
- Add some pumpkins or other fall squash to your mantle or a shelf
This is also the perfect time to display items made from natural elements that you already own: wooden bowls and woven baskets immediately come to mind and make a great way to add the “feel” of the outdoors even if you prefer not to bring in leaves or branches.
Make your home feel cozy
When I think about cozy, my mind immediately goes to blankets, afghans, and pillows.
- Drape a light throw blanket across the back of a chair
- Bring the afghan out of storage and keep it near the couch
- Place one of your regular throw pillows into a pillow cover and zip it up to change the look.
- Bring out the area rug(s) you put away to achieve a lighter summer feel
Fall smells wonderful in the air
There’s something about walking into a home and smelling apples or cinnamon that immediately says “it’s fall!” And if you do nothing besides change out (or add) a few candles, your home will have a seasonal feel to it.
Candles meet several of the criteria for my fall decor. Their flame adds warmth and coziness, but they can also add some of those lovely fall scents into the air.
A few other typical fall scents are vanilla, cloves, and pumpkin…or anything else that smells like a traditional fall food. You can even find candles that smell like burning leaves, fall wreaths, and a host of other scents…you’re sure to find something you like.
You can also achieve a similar effect with liquid potpourri, sprays, or deodorant plugins. But if you – or someone in your home – doesn’t tolerate the chemicals in the air you can always put a pot of water on the stove and add cinnamon sticks or orange peels.
Of course, putting something yummy in to bake achieves the same effect or you could make your own homemade potpourri from natural ingredients that you control.
These are the simple ways I’ve found to incorporate clutter-free fall decor items into my home. They don’t require lots of storage space during the other seasons, most of them are items I already have in my home, or they’re items that can be easily changed to give them a new look.
The last thing I want is more stuff sitting around adding visual and physical clutter that I have to clean up, dust, and then store. Besides, decorating isn’t about “stuff”…it’s about enjoying your home through the way it looks, feels, and smells. And those things can be achieved with out adding more clutter.
Be sure to check out these posts before you go:
How To Make Your Own Autumn Potpourri is perfect if you prefer to control what’s in the air.
You’ll want to check out It’s Christmas, I’m Tired, and I Don’t Want To Decorate! 9 Super Easy Decorating Ideas if you’ve ever dreaded getting your house ready for the Christmas holidays.