10 fall home decor ideas to embrace this autumn.


By Nicole Talbot and Thumbtack staff.

There’s something beautiful about the fall. The golden trees and falling leaves, orange pumpkins and holiday gatherings make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It’s only natural that we’re often inspired to invite the sights and scents of the season into our homes this time of year. Check out these tips for adding a touch of fall decor to your home — inside and out.

Prepare your home for fall. 

fall leaves on front home lawn

Try to take care of some light seasonal maintenance before you dust off the fall decorations to display this year. Plus, crossing odd jobs off your list now will put you and your home in good shape for the colder months ahead.

Start by tackling these tasks outside the home:

  • Sweep up. Fall means leaves, and you’ll want to get them swept and bagged so your front porch and yard look neat and tidy — especially before Halloween. When leaves get wet from the rain, they get slippery, so be sure to clear them before trick-or-treaters head your way.
  • Repair or install adequate lightingIf you don’t already have lighted pathways, consider adding some lights near your sidewalk and driveway so guests can see where they’re stepping. After all, you may have a holiday party ahead.
  • Repair walkways. Cracks in sidewalks and driveways can be dangerous in the rain or snow. Pressure wash the driveway, patio and sidewalk. Fill any cracks to prevent houseguests and trick-or-treaters from tripping.
  • Mow the lawnGrass doesn't grow as fast during the colder months — and it’s a pain to mow in wetter weather. All the more reason to give the lawn one last trim, especially if you’re going to decorate for Halloween. Extra credit: after you’ve mowed, add some fertilizer to get ahead of winter wear and keep your lawn in top shape come spring.
  • Clean out your guttersNow’s the time to clear the old accumulated leaves and debris from rain gutters so they don’t get backed up. You can grab some heavy gloves and a (sturdy) ladder to de-goop the gunk yourself, but it’s always safer to hire a pro to help.

As for your interior, complete these tasks before you start adding your signature fall accents:

  • Stow away summer decor. If you haven’t already, take down and store any warm-weather furnishings you have out. “I first take all my current decor down, clean then dust,” says lifestyle blogger Chelsee Hood at House of Hood. “I get out all my seasonal decor and lay it out on a large table and then decide what I want to continue using and what new items I could use.”
  • Clear the clutterYour new fall adornments won’t stand out as much if clutter’s in the way. Take the time to put things away in their proper place. Pay special attention to spaces like the living room, kitchen and dining area. Michelle Hansen, professional organizer and founder of Practical Perfection, recommends decluttering in the fall before the holiday season kicks into high gear. “Decluttering and cleaning the rooms that have been driving you crazy, this is the time.”
  • Clean high-traffic areas. Start with a clean canvas. Dust, wipe down surfaces and clean windows. Hansen aims to tackle one room at a time over one week to prevent overwhelm and burnout. 
  • Inspect fireplacesConfirm that everything is operating normally, whether your unit is gas or wood-burning. Be sure the flue is open, and consider a chimney sweep service to remove creosote and ash buildup.
  • Replace air filters. Maintaining good ventilation and air quality ensures your home’s interior is clean, healthy and allergen-free.

Finally — time to decorate.

After cleaning your home and checking off several fall home maintenance tasks, it's time for the fun part. Don’t know where to start? Here are some tips to spark your imagination. 

1. Spice up the front stoop with pumpkins.

pumpkins on front porchYou can never have too many pumpkins for the spookiest day of the year. They can be real, fake or a mix of both. These gourds are team players and work for nearly every theme imaginable, so arrange them on porches, decks, tables and mantles. Paint or stencil them in colors that match your decor, add small pumpkins to centerpieces — and even carve spooky faces in one or two of them when Halloween approaches. 

2. Hang a fall wreath on your door. 

fall wreath ideasWreaths aren’t just for winter holidays — they also make great front door decorations for the fall season. Design and put together your DIY autumn-themed wreath by using any of these items: 

  • Corn husks
  • Fallen leaves from your yard
  • Faux apples, pumpkins and gourds
  • Feathers
  • Floral strands
  • Olive branches
  • Pine cones
  • Ribbons
  • Wheat and straw

3. Create a fall window box planter.

fall winter planter box ideas

Planter boxes are a fun and unique way to level up your windows. This fall, add fall colors and different textures to spruce up your home’s exterior. You can add many of the same faux items you choose for your wreath (like pumpkins and gourds) — or use the real thing. For example, you can plant kale, herbs, evergreens and even ornamental peppers.

4. Decorate your entryway with fall foliage.

fall foliage in home entrywayImmerse your guests in autumn as soon as they step through the front door and into your entryway. This space in your home sets the mood and tone for the rest of your home’s decor, so feel free to get creative. 

When decorating your entryway for fall, add foliage, pumpkins, signage and any tabletop or freestanding pieces that fit into your space. 

5. Create a cozier living room. 

living room with cozy furnitureWhen planning your fall home decor, prioritize your home’s most popular rooms and spaces. The living room is where most families spend the bulk of their time, so consider ways to incorporate the season into the living space.

Swap out your throw pillows and blankets for ones that are orange, red or brown. If you’re not a big fan of these colors, try gold, white, cream and beige living room accents. Put a vase with fall foliage on your coffee table, and add a few small pumpkins, pinecones, wooden coasters or scented candles. Aim for candles with apple, cinnamon, pumpkin or vanilla notes.

6. Embrace farmhouse chic. 

farmhouse living room designThe modern farmhouse look is a pleasing combination of elevated design and charming accents. Because the style is so popular, there are a lot of options to choose from in the decorations department. Whimsical signage, pillows with embroidered quotes, foliage, hay bales and pumpkins in various sizes are a great start to creating this style. 

7. Add fall accents to your outdoor living area.

fall outdoor living room decorIf you have a deck, patio or outdoor seating area, incorporate a few fall accessories. Similar to your indoor living room, toss some fall-themed throw pillows and blankets on your outdoor couches and chairs, or place a few pumpkins on the table. You may want to use fabrics that are weather-resistant; otherwise, protect or store your blankets and pillows during wet or rainy weather.

8. Choose fall decor for your dining room.

fall kitchen table decor

Set out seasonal runners, napkins, napkin rings, glassware or serving dishes to make your dining table festive. 

Create a centerpiece that ties into the theme, or simply incorporate the natural colors of the season. Think about adding pumpkins (real or faux), candles or flowers. 

9. Take a modern, neutral approach.

dining room table with white pumpkin decorIf orange isn’t your thing, create an elevated vibe with all-black or all-white accents with natural touches. Neutral, white or color-blocked pumpkins, sleek candlesticks and pampas grass in stylish vases are a few upscale ways to bring the spirit of the holiday into your home. 

10. Don’t forget to decorate your fireplace and mantle.

fireplace fall decor ideas

The mantle is a popular place to decorate for fall. It’s a natural focal point in a room and can have a major visual impact. If you have to choose between decorating the living room or focusing on the fireplace, go with the fireplace. 

Display garland, bunting, candles, pumpkins and signage on your mantle’s ledge. Feel free to use every inch of the space — fix decorations to the adjoining wall and place larger pieces in the front. Just be mindful of the heat if you use the fireplace regularly. 

Get help or ideas from Thumbtack pros

Fall decorating may be something you want to take on yourself, but if you’re feeling overwhelmed with too many options, want to try out some fresh, new ideas — or even if you need help giving your home a good clean before the rolling out the pumpkins, call on Thumbtack’s pros for help.

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