Autumn Decorating Inspiration Home Tour

Fall decorating ideas that can be done on a budget.

Fall decorating ideas on a budget. Follow the Eclectically Fall home tours and get inspired to decorate your home for autumn.

Nine months ago, my husband and I moved from suburban Philadelphia to Lake Murray in South Carolina to live our dream of living in a house along the water’s edge.

lake house living ideas

We bought a 1970’s waterfront home complete with a gazebo over the water and dock. We even bought a boat.

The house is in good shape and just needed a few tweaks along with updating in the way of decor. Since we moved in, we have tackled many projects living in the house as we update it to suit our life + style. It truly feels like home now.

You can see the before shots of the house: Before Photos of Lake House

Fall Home Decor: Living Room

Stone fireplace mantel decorating ideas for fall

FALL DECORATING TIP: Go with one color and make it pop throughout the house.

This stone fireplace used to be a flat brick wall.  It was one of the first big projects I took on when we moved into the house. You can read all about it in this post: Fireplace Makeover

I love classic orange pumpkins. Finding them was pretty easy in mid September back in PA. See my previous home decked out for fall.

I can’t even imagine not having a few pumpkins around the inside and outside of the house for fall.

Here in the south though, there is no way to rush fall. There was not a pumpkin in sight no matter where I looked, until yesterday and I found one at the supermarket. :-)

Now I feel like my house is truly ready for fall.

I like to use mostly white when decorating so it is easy to change the color by seasons or just on a whim. Everything goes instantly.

white living room for fall decorating

FALL DECORATING TIP: Shop your house and yard for items to add autumn warmth to your home.

I went around my house and yard to find items to use to decorate for fall. When we moved, I only saved one small box of fall decor. If you have been reading my blog for awhile you may see a few things re-purposed from my previous house.

Modern decorating for fall

FALL DECORATING TIP: Use a stack of thrift store books to raise a too-short lamp or a vase of flowers. Paint the books in your favorite color.

Fall is all about adding layers and texture to warm up the interior, but also layering as life evolves. I use some of my favorite items every fall. I don’t need all new. I like my true friends that make me smile.  I am not after perfection either, just comfy functional style that reflects the season and layering in the things I love while creating a home that is unique to me and my family.

Fall mantel decorating idea

FALL DECORATING TIP: The fall leaf bouquet is from the craft store, but as soon as the leaves start to turn in your area, cut a few branches to decorate your home.

Autumn home decorating inspiration and ideas on a budget

I bought these indoor outdoor swivel rockers back in the spring. I love that they make it easy to watch TV or have conversation when they face out into the room, but what I like best is that I can simply swivel around…


…and face a fire in the fireplace. I can even put my feet up on the hearth.

Fall mantel decorating idea using what you already own

AUTUMN DECORATING TIP:  Save elegantly shaped glass bottles to hold long stems or branches in. The small opening they have make it easy to hold them in a vertical position. Both bottles are the same height. If you look closely at the taller bottle you may see that I have it placed on a spool of ribbon to add height. Shhhhh!  The leaves cover it…no one will ever know. :-)

In My Own Style fall home tour

My style is truly a mix, eclectic but a cross between casual, laid back and a mix of cottage with a few modern touches thrown in. I refer to it as Cottage Chic.  I don’t decorate to obtain a certain style of decor, I just enjoy putting together what feels right to me visually.  Everything has to have a function and most of all be comfy. If it isn’t, it doesn’t make the cut. I wrote a post all about it, you can read it here: How To Decorate So You Feel at Home.

Budget decorating tips and ideas for fall

Brightly colored leaves placed in a basket is so easy to do for an instant autumn touch.


DIY Project: Tuna Can Topped Candy Canister on a side table.

Decorating for fall with candles and pumpkins

FALL TABLE DECORATING TIP: Group a few fall accessories together in a tray.  Cover a stack of books with this French script free printable. 

Budget Fall decor in living room

DIY Project: Repurposed Mirror Coffee Table is grand central for placing accessories in the living room.

How to decorate with trays for fall

My first real pumpkin of 2016 :-)

Coffee table decorating idea for autumn

Fall is not just about decor, but the change of coming back inside and enjoying inside activities. Soon I will be spending more time indoors and not out on the lake. I am enjoying The Inspired Room’s Coloring Book.

Eclectically Vintage Fall Home tour inspiring you to decorate for fall

It is a great stress reliever and a way to get my needed daily dose of color therapy. It also looks pretty sitting out and ready on the coffee table.


Fall Home Decor: Kitchen

Fall decorating ideas for walls and doors

In the next few weeks I am going to begin to update the kitchen with paint, a new backsplash and more.  Until I start, I added a basket of autumn color to enjoy and break up some of the brown wood.


Most of the wood work in the house was brown, I am almost finished painting all if it.  Once that is done, I will deal with the painted wallpaper that is peeling off the walls.


When I saw the OPEN sign at HomeGoods, I smiled big time. Ever since we moved to this house we have had a steady stream of friends and family staying with us to spend time on the lake.  It feels like a bed and breakfast on some weekends. The sign is quite appropriate. :-)

I also wanted to find something black. We have a big black TV hung on the wall in the living room. It kind of sticks out. To help it blend in, I added the sign and the clock above the sofa in the living room to create a visual triangle of color balance in the two rooms.


Fall branches in a simple glass vase.


Fall Home Decorating: The Exterior Deck

Fall deck decor

The deck wraps around the water side of the house. There is plenty of space to set up a few different seating areas. This view looks down into the cove on the left side of the house.

Autumn inspired outdoor planters with ornamental kale and celosia

After the heat of the summer dried up some of the flowers I had planted in the planters that line the deck, it was time to clean them out and add some pretty Kale and Celosia to get the deck ready for fall.


It is still pretty warm here, but as soon as the weather turns, you will find me right here, looking out at the water.

my house on the lake

I hope you enjoyed my fall home tour, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments.

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  1. These fall decorating ideas and interior design tips are helpful! By the way, have you considered adorning your walls with fall-themed wall murals?

  2. Suzie Jackson says:

    Loving your new home girl. I love your fall home tour!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Suzie – We are so happy that we made the move. It is a joy for me to decorate and update.

  3. Mark Mcdonough says:

    How crazy is it that Fall is here! Love your color choices and furniture ideas!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Mark – Happy Fall! :-)

  4. Diane, I LOVE the pops of fuschia – just gorgeous and so unexpected! I love the new clock and think a clock wall would be fabulous – I’m a huge fan of roman numeral clocks as well. I had such a great time getting to know you a little bit at Haven – thanks for mentoring – and I can’t wait to follow along on your journey with this new home! Happy Fall!

  5. Fabulous autumn decor! Absolutely do-able for those of us budget and time-restricted folks! :)

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Katie – Thanks. I enjoy decorating on a budget, it makes it so much more fun to see what you can scout out and find. :-)

  6. i love how you have changed your new home from out-dated to bright and beautiful. But I am suprised that you have chosen to use two large statement clocks facing each other across the livingroom. They seem a bit too similar to use in the same room. I am still a big fan.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Joellen –

      I LOVE LOVE LOVE Roman numeral clocks and collect them. One day I may like to place them all on one wall. I literally just got the big clock the day before I posted the tour. I didn’t have time to come up with something new to place over the mantel and already had a few of the photos already taken. One thing I don’t like to do is just buy something to look good for a blog post. I want to love it and sometimes that takes time…real time not blog time. Eventually I will get something new for above the mantel. :-)

  7. You have done a brilliant job so far in updating your house! I have been following along for quite awhile now and am impressed not only with your choices but the stamina you have to complete them. I have a question about your table – the white wrought iron base one – can you tell me where it is from?

  8. It looks wonderful and I can see how easily you’ll be able to change up for the seasons ahead. While I like your colorful velvet pillows, I’m deeply envious of your leopard pillow. I didn’t find it on the World Market site. Where did you find this beauty?

      1. Thanks for the info. At $35/ yd, no wonder the pillow is so stunning. I’ll keep searching for a more affordable fabric option

        1. Diane Henkler says:

          Hi Patricia – I can remember when decorator fabric was $15 a yard. Tells you how old I am. :-) It is pricey fabric, but it is very, very nice. It is not quite velvet, but a mix with cotton. It feels good against your skin. If you follow the Lewis & Sheron site, they do have discounts and percent off sales every now and then. :-) If I ever come across a less expensive version I will let you know.

  9. Diane,
    Love everything you are doing to your new home. I want to add a white slipcover to my sofa too. Your blog and resources are always so helpful! Woul you consider writing about your slipcover experiences!

  10. Love it Diane! Looks so cozy. When can we come visit? ;-) PS- I totally want those kitchen chairs, so pretty and that’s a great price!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Carrie from neighboring NC :-) I love, love the chairs. I opted to not even use cushions with them since we found them super comfy without them. I have hearted them for years and finally in the spring, bought them. They come in stool height also. I hope life and the house are moving along at a nice pace. XO

  11. I too live on a lake. When I moved here years ago, all the walls were white. I felt that I needed some color on the walls to make the house look more like a lake house and less like a beach house. I still love my golds, reds and greens. My new favorite color is Aqua. Now everywhere I look the new trend is whites and greys. I may tone down my walls some,but I still enjoy my colors. I do love your stacked stone fireplace. I am anxious to see how you change the kitchen. If you paint the cabinets, give the details as I want to paint mine. There is nothing like living on the water. I feel blessed everyday.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Cindy –

      I too, everyday count my blessings that I am able to live my dream of living on the water. I still can’t believe we made it happen. It makes me so very happy.

      My favorite part about decorating a house is that we all get to do it in our own way. If we all followed the rules or trends, it would be such a boring existence. Your home sounds beautiful with the harmony of colors. It is what makes you feel good in your home and that is what decorating is all about. I have lived in many homes and painted rooms in many colors, but I find I always go back to white or light blue on the walls. I grew up in a home with all white walls and lots of color pops in the furnishings. It is what feels right to me and brings back all the wonderful feelings of home that I had as a child.

      I will be posting all the steps of the DIY kitchen makeover in detail. I think I will be starting it next week. Stay tuned.

  12. kristin salazar says:

    YOUR home is just gorgeous, love your view on the lake, can’t wait to see what you do with the kitchen!

  13. Terri/Houston lady says:

    Oh Diane.. Your home looks beautiful! Glad you are enjoying decorating for fall this year in your dream home ?

  14. Mary Coakley says:

    Hi just wanted to say I loved your fall decorations,I love your house in particular your fireplace.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Mary – Thanks – A stone fireplace is something I always wanted to have. When I saw the house had a flat brick fireplace wall, I knew it was going to be one of the first project I took on. It took me 3 days to create it with AirStone. If you haven’t read the post about it, you can find it here:

  15. Everything in your home looks so pretty. Can you please tell me where you got the colored pencils on the coffee table that look like they are made from logs?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Bonnie – Thanks – I bought the colored twig pencils at World Market. Here is the link:

      They come in two different sizes – thick and thin. I got the thick ones.

  16. Mary Heicher says:

    I love the colorful branches of leaves. It’s rather a shame, living in Florida,
    the only Autumn colored leaves are those bought at the local Wal Mart. :)
    We go from green directly to brown. lol
    I love your house. Fall is the best, winter, for me, is second.

  17. Diane, your Fall decorations are beautiful. We spent the weekend moving my sister into her new home in Charleston…all of SC is sweltering. I can’t wait for cool weather! Where did you get your birch logs in the fireplace?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Roxanne – Ooops! I forgot to add that link in the post. I bought the birch logs at Crate & Barrel. You will find them here:

  18. cassie bustamante says:

    oh diane, i was so excited for this one because i always love your use of color, and you did not disappoint! LOVE LOVE LOVE the pink and orange! what an amazing space you have created- so happy and fresh and so you!

  19. It all looks so pretty! Makes me (almost) want to go out and buy some autumn accessories. ;-) For some reason I think I get my fall color fix enough just by looking out my window at the deciduous trees changing colors, driving over the Missouri River and seeing all the colors Nature updates herself and …. actually trying desperately to hang on to summer as long as I can. LOL But …hmmmm….I too have a mostly white house so I’m starting to be swayed by your pretty photos. :-)

  20. Beautiful fall decor! Love following along to see how you are transforming your lake house to fit your style. Amazing!

  21. Kelly Elko says:

    Diane your home looks amazing! I can’t believe all you’ve accomplished in such a short time! The mantel makeover is fantastic and of course even more so dressed for fall. I love your use of color and pattern – you have such an inviting home. So glad you’re on the tour this year! Now I’ll invite myself over for some lake time and wine!

  22. Diane! I love it all! I love all of the pops of color! You are my inspiration to get going on my summer to fall transformation.
    I know what you are talking about a Lakehouse that is like a B & B! Love the OPEN sign!!
    Enjoy this gorgeous weather.
    As always your design is amazing!

  23. Love your home and eclectic style!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Debbie – Last year at this time, I was exactly where you are…planning to move by the end of the year. I can’t believe we made it happen during the busiest time of year. It was nice being able to set things up so I can truly enjoy the season this year. I am looking forward to your tour this week.

  24. laura janning says:

    did someone say B&B! just love your fall tour Diane and the way your home is coming together. love your pops of color and those cozy throws will be perfect when I come to visit and we sit outside staring at the lake!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Laura – Yes we are always OPEN…The Henkler Haceinda B&B. :-) I have had the fur throw for 2 weeks now and have used it a few times while sitting in the room at night. Last night it was rainy and with the AC on in the house, it was perfect to snuggle up with. I can’t wait for the weather to break so I can use it out on the deck at night.

  25. Wow, gorgeous, Diane! I especially love the pink and orange combo and have searched *everywhere* for orange velvet pillows, even ordering fabric that ended up not being right. I must have those:-) Love your beautiful space!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Anita – I think World Market even has two colors of orange velvet pillows. I got the spicy orange.

  26. Julia@Cuckoo4Design says:

    I’m sure you pinch yourself all the time. It’s just that beautiful where you live and the inside of your home truly reflects you now. Love the pink and orange combo too.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Good morning Julia – You are up early :-) Every time I look out the window I still can’t believe we made our dream happen. I ask myself, Is it real or I am a going to wake up from some sort of parallel reality dream? :-) There is still lots of work ahead to make the house just right for us, but I am loving every bit.