Foxgloves & Fireflies: Decorating for fall, y’all!


Candles always give a space a warmth and coziness; use your plaid throws to enhance the feeling and to prolong your time spent on the porch when there is a little chill in the air. / Dominique Gillespie

The weather has finally taken a small turn toward autumn, and with the slightly cooler temps come the changing of the leaves. That’s always a sure sign that pumpkins and mums will appear along the streets and country roads in Cullman County.

Bright cheerful colors make people feel good. They elevate our moods and sometimes, depending on what the colors are, actually stimulate our appetites. Just think for a moment of the color of just about every fast food chain sign you’ve ever seen, red, yellow, and orange, right? A lot of science went into determining that those colors would entice people to stop for a meal. The same holds true in our homes, and on our porches.

Putting out orange pumpkins, clusters of yellow leaves, muli-colored flags and scarecrows dressed in bright colors all combine to welcome friends and neighbors, and to attract the eyes of passersby, indicating that we are ready for fall’s round of holidays, Halloween, then Thanksgiving.

If you are entertaining this season and looking around for some inexpensive ideas to liven up your steps, or add a punch to your vignettes, you don’t have to look any further than your sewing basket. Use yarn and ribbon in seasonal colors, tied in ribbons or shaped into spiral streamers to add to wreaths and swags for your door. Tie some thin ribbon around the stems of your pumpkins or even around your flower pots to give them a shot of color.

Autumn leaves in a wooden bowl are an inexpensive way to add color to a coffee table or a buffet. If you can find Osage oranges along country roads there are several ways of incorporating them into your fall arrangements. Think tall clear vases filled with these chartreuse orbs. When water is added to the vase the Osage oranges just look bigger and better. Tie a plaid ribbon in complimentary colors and you have a very eye-catching centerpiece. Add some votive candles at the base and it just intensifies the dramatic look of these found objects and it didn’t cost you a penny!

Stacking pumpkins has become a very popular way to display these familiar fall symbols of the year’s bountiful harvest. The unusual shapes and colors that have been developed make this an even more attractive way of showcasing your entrance or tablescape.

You can even have an all neutral color scheme these days, with lovely white or cream colored Cinderella pumpkins, which last a very long time, even on into the Christmas holidays. If the color starts to turn, just spray paint them in your favorite shade and incorporate them into your holiday décor.

You imagination can spark all kinds of vividly colored and accented arrangements for your gate or the entrance to your home. The branches of Bradford pears should soon be turning the most marvelous shades of maroon and magenta. Use these common elements to fill vases and urns, or to tuck between the pumpkins in your stack. Any colorful leaves will work for this.

You can even use your wardrobe to inspire your décor. Get out those bright fall scarves and throws and let these crisp days and cool nights inspire you to tuck them under your centerpiece, around your lanterns, and under your indoor pumpkin displays. This will also give you another textural element, which always adds interest to any arrangement.

Now, you are all set for visitors! All you need is the food! Watch this space in the coming weeks for some new holiday recipes.

Happy fall, y’all!

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