NEW YORK (MainStreet) The time of year has come where magazine covers and TV commercials are all plastered with those pristinely decorated, fall-inspired homes. The pumpkins, candles, wreaths and table decorations are always so creative and beautiful that many assume they cannot replicate the look without spending a ton of money at Crate & Barrel.
However, there are ways to easily create your own fall-inspired decorations that look professional while staying within budget. Making your own decorations may sound too difficult or time-consuming to some, but here is a roundup of some ideas that prove otherwise.
1. Head on over to Spoonful.com, where you will find not only decoration and craft ideas, but family meals, recipes and party suggestions. One of the most popular DIY decoration ideas consists of carving out pumpkins (or even gourds) to use as vases. This step-by-step tutorial shows you how to make a beautiful centerpiece for your Thanksgiving dinner table in a short amount of time with only five items!
2. An outdoor decoration idea like this one is also a hit, because it's simple enough for children to do. This rustic, creative family name sign only calls for four to six items depending on preference, and three of them can be found outside! Turn this into an all-day activity by going out and collecting your own acorns, twigs, and leaves, and then come back and give it your own family flavor.
3. For something a bit more challenging, you may want to experiment with wax-dipped leaves. This three-step "how-to" shows a simple way to preserve leaves by dipping them in paraffin wax. This technique is especially helpful when using leaves as indoor tabletop decorations. The leaves become hard and the wax prevents them from withering and crisping up in too short a time.
4. If you feel like your door is naked without a wreath in the fall, check out this roundup of 25 DIY wreaths gathered at Babble.com. From a wreath with a big, charming bow, to a wreath made primarily from coffee filters, you are bound to find at least one to suit both your taste and ability.
5. If you've recently gone pumpkin picking and you are looking for some non-carving decoration ideas, Babble also displayed these: color "dipped" mini pumpkins from Sweet C's Designs, and lace-inspired pumpkins from Domestic Fashionista. Also, these monogrammed pumpkins from Better Homes & Gardens can also make for an impressive porch display. All of these ideas make the average pumpkin look sweet and festive, and there are a ton of different options and ways to get creative.
6. Corn husks and burlap are known to be "staples" when it comes to fall decorating, because they can easily accent typical, everyday items, turning them into professional-looking designs. Jenna Pizzigatti-Coppola, founder and owner of Pizzigatti Designs eco-chic interiors, suggests wrapping pre-dried corn husks around votive candles, trimming them down to be just about even with the candles, and securing them with string or twine. This idea is just a three-step process and is sure to wow even the most critical of guests. Pizzigatti-Coppola also suggests creating a "color blast in a vase" which entails re-purposing a flower vase and filling it from bottom to top with either real or fake flowers (or, you can even use the wax-dipped leaves as seen in number 3). A quick and easy idea that adds a brilliant pop of fall foliage to your home's décor!
7. Over at Martys Musings, you will also find DIY projects with varying levels of intricacy. Mason jars as seen on this page are filled with acorns, pine cones, and balls of yarn. Marty puts her own spin on wrapped candles using burlap and ribbon and placing them in spray-painted candle holders. For those who enjoy a challenge, Marty and her husband created this gorgeous branch candle centerpiece. This centerpiece helps to create a perfect fall-themed atmosphere, especially when paired as shown with pinecones, leaves, and a colorful table runner.
8. For those who enjoy perusing garage sales or antique shops, vintage items like crates, baskets and bins can also give off fall vibes as shown in the Idea Gallery on Homes.com. Whether you choose to fill your vintage bin with pumpkins or gourds of various sizes, pinecones, leaves or even books, the bins can make for simple elegance around the home.
9. This article, also from Homes.com, provides insight on how to use some widely-available items for décor. These items are widely-available, because they are all found outside. Acorns, leaves and sticks are all pictured in various wayswrapped around candles, placed in frames and shadow boxes or tied up with string and hung on walls. The best part? These designs cost next to nothing.
10. Homes.com also offers a unique idea for an "upcycled" sweater pillow. As the fall air starts to turn crisp, sometimes all you want to do is snuggle up on the couch with a cozy pillow. Using a pillow that you already have in the house, you can take an old sweater and "upcycle" it by covering the pillow like a pillowcase. Use pins to mark where the pillow needs to be encased by the sweater and sew the sweater to fit the pillow snugly. If you don't plan on removing the sweater from the pillow, sew it closed afterwards. As long as you have a sewing kit, a spare pillow and an old sweater, this project won't cost anything and is sure to get a lot of use!
--Written by Ciara Larkin for MainStreet