Fall Home Decorating Style Starters

Budget-friendly fall home decorating ideas that will easily transition your home from summer to fall. *affiliate links used*

Now that August is nearing the end… Ready or Not…Here Comes Fall and fall home decorating ideas.

First Signs of fall

It doesn’t feel at all like fall yet around the lake, in fact as anyone who lives in the south knows…. the heat will stick around well through October, but my mailbox tells a different story as the first signs of fall have begun to arrive in the way of home decorating and fashion catalogs. :-)

The end of summer is always a bittersweet time for me. I love the summer and don’t want to see it end, but the warm and cozy feeling of the fall season will draw me in soon and I want to be ready. I feel a teeny bit more of a pull towards it now that the house is empty of family and friends who stayed with us over the Total Eclipse weekend. We were right in the sweet spot and saw 100%. It was very cool to witness first hand – quite awe-inspiring and something I will never forget. Photos just do not show what we saw in real life.

Over the past few years I have paired back quite a bit when decorating the house for fall. I used to have bins full of fall decor, but when we moved, I gave away or donated most of it. It was beginning to feel too fussy and unnecessary.  What feels better to me now is simply creating a warm and cozy feeling by adding some fall color and textures around the house and less about bins of stuff.

Susan-Branch-Autumn-Book for simple comfy cozy fall home decorating inspiration

When I need a little fall comfy-cozy inspiration, I head to my bookshelf and pull down, Autumn by Susan Branch.

Fast and Easy Fall Decor

Reading though her fall ideas for the home from recipes to decorating always gets me into a fall frame of mind. My favorites are simple… like piling acorns in a bowl, lighting the first fire in the fireplace and getting out the fur throws from the closet to place on the sofa.

I am still sofa-less, but did order my number 1 slipcovered sofa choice that I wrote about in my post last week. It should arrive by the first week of October. I also ordered two recliners, not in blue, but in leather, in a color called, Toast. I will post all about these once they arrive.

For now, I thought I would share a few of my favorite budget-friendly fall decorating ideas that you can add to your home, most you can get right in your own backyard, the dollar or craft store.

Fall Home Decorating Style Starters

Decorating for fall with candles and pumpkins

Candles – Throughout the year, I normally use inexpensive white candles in my decor that I buy at IKEA. They have the best selection of unscented white candles. When I want big and chunky white ones, Pottery Barn is the only place I have found that sells the largest. They can be pricy though, but will last for years. Watch for sales so you can save a few dollars. I think there is a sale on the big candles now.

When fall comes around, I like to add a big chunky rusty-orange candle on my living room table.  I bought this triple wick one last year at Walmart.

Budget decorating tips and ideas for fall

Real or Faux Foliage – I use both and am not ashamed of the fact that I don’t mind using fake florals. I use them all the time. I found these fall leaves at Michaels.  I bought the basket a few years ago at Target. It is a classic, an inexpensive knock-off from Pottery Barn’s Beachcomber storage baskets. You can find similar styles at HomeGoods and World Market.

Fall home Decorating ideas

A Stack of Books and a Pumpkin – Gather books with fall colored covers and stack them on a table. Place a pumpkin or candle on top. My mom made this ceramic pumpkin back in 1973. I love it. The antlers were a Christmas ornament that I repurposed to use as a decorative accessory.

Fun Fact: I just learned this fact from browsing through the fall Pier 1 catalog:  Did you know?  White pumpkins are the traditional harvest symbol of good luck! I may have to but a few this season.


Thrift Store Books and a Free-Printable –  Search for white covered books at the thrift store. If you can’t find any, use spray paint to make them white. Print-out this free-printable and use repositionable glue to attach each line to the binding of the books. Once fall is over, remove the fall saying and use the books to add height to a lamp or vase on a table.

Click the link to see how I made the book stack and also for the Free Printable.


Rusted Chicken Wire Vases – These can be used all-year round, but they look extra special when used as a fall vase.  You can find a similar style on sale at Hobby Lobby.


Birch Logs – If you have a birch tree or any tree for that matter in your yard, you can trim the branches and save them to place in a basket or to display in an unused fireplace. If you live near a wooded area, take a walk and search for any downed branches that you can take home and cut. I had neither of these options and bought my birch logs at Michaels. 

Repurposing ideas using old furniture

Breadboards – Breadboards of any shape and style give any kitchen that comfy-cozy feeling. You can find old vintage cutting boards at thrift stores or buy new styles at HomeGoods, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls. I made this handled breadboard from reclaimed wood.

Decorating uses brown paper bags

Make a Free Planter Cover for Fall Mums –  Fall mums and flowers usually come in ugly plastic pots. A brown paper bag makes a perfect fall covering to hide it. 


Yummy Smells Wafting From the Kitchen –  Making your home all comfy-cozy for fall would would not be complete without baking something with apples so that delicious baking smell fills the house. My favorite is Ina Garten’s apple crisp.

What are your favorite ways to transition your home decorating to fall?

  • Interested in Susan Branch’s books? You can find them, here.  I just finished reading her autobiography. She wrote it in two volumes. Fairy Tale Girl and Martha’s Vineyard, Isle of Dreams. I loved both. After I read them, I sent them to my daughter and her roomie. They enjoyed every word, too… and like me, didn’t want them to end. When life threw her a curve ball, she retreated from life, but that retreat changed her life and made her dreams come true.

Fast and Easy Fall Decor


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  1. These fall home decorating ideas are simple and easy to execute. What’s great is that in order to enjoy them, you don’t need to change your existing décor. They fit well with most color schemes and styles.

  2. Great ideas! I’m goping to decorate my house thisa weekend and your post gave me great ideas. I love adding fresh flowers to my fall decorations and I’m choosing again a new color fall mums. And can’t wait to receive my copy of Susan Branch’s new book – just ordered it. Greets!

  3. I LOVE summer (yes even the heat – we live in Baltimore). I steadfastly refuse to accept that summer is over until I can no longer get in my pool. Last year I made it to September 21. After that I like to wait until at least the first frost to consider decorating for Halloween.

  4. I don’t know what I am doing wrong but I can’t get the pdf to download! Love your home and reading about all that you have done to your new home.

  5. The last two days here in Michigan we have the first cooler weather of the summer. Our summer has been perfect temperature wise, so this little cool snap definitely gives things a September feel, already. Tonight I was at the dollar store and noticed they had some fall items and I picked up some faux leaves and some unusual and large picks. That’s the beginning for me…. but my eyes are on the mums I saw at the grocery store so maybe I caught the bug. ;) Thanks for all the lovely tips, Diane. You are always so creative and inspiring.

    1. Hi Diane – I am excited to see mums and pumpkins soon too. In Michigan I bet you are seeing many more signs of fall than I am, but the temps have dipped over the weekend here in SC to mid 80’s. I am looking forward to being able to open the house up and turn the AC off, but I am sure we will still get some more 95 degree days. I hope you have a wonderful Labor Day weekend. Writing that makes it sound so official – end of summer. Enjoy adding the fall touches around your house with your new leaves and fall florals.

  6. I can almost smell the pumpkin spice! You’ve shared some wonderful ideas for fall….I just want to go to the lake a few more times before I start decorating! I do love Susan Branch’s books….so inspiring!

    Have a wonderful weekend!


  7. Well… I wasn’t ready for fall, but your post did kind of make me look forward to it! It really is a magical time of year. Our Sacramento summers are long like yours so when real fall comes, it is such a treat! Adore Susan Branch- thank you for sharing about her autobiographies. I’m adding them to my reading list.

  8. I love painted books. I spray painted some black and others gold. I mostly use them to display Hummels and other small knicknacks on bookshelves. I also use them as bookends by piling a few next to the upright books. I like the white ones you did so will try that next. As far as transitioning from summer to fall, I don’t do much of that here in Hawaii. A few pumpkins on the front lanai, maybe, but that’s about it.

  9. I am so excited about Susan Branch’s biographical books. I didn’t know about them and will be ordering them soon. Thanks for sharing. I’ve purchased many of her other books, especially the cookbooks and they are fabulous. Love her artwork and comments.

  10. Great ideas! I too love the Susan Branch books and her style. Did you know she has a website too with many great ideas? It got political a while back but other than that has been so enjoyable to peruse. Now you’ve got me wishing for fall. We too watched the spectacular total eclipse over Lake Murray – sitting in that heat! Wasn’t it beautiful?!