Get your front porch ready for fall
The leaves are changing, temperatures are dropping and you’ve got a front porch to redecorate for fall. If you’re in need of some seasonal inspiration, you’re in luck! The following tips identify a wealth of festive elements -- traditional and unique -- that can give your porch a touch of autumn elegance or country charm.
Pumpkins and gourd groupings
Gina Samarotto of Samarotto Design Group says, "When staging a porch, patio or entry way, you want to use groupings to create the depth and interest of high design. Three to five pumpkins grouped at the base of a container planting will be so much more elegant and aesthetic than one or two."
To add a little more pizzazz to your porch, get crafty and decorate those pumpkins or gourds. You can carve them, bedazzle them, coat them in chalkboard paint or cover them in lace and sheer fabrics. April Force Pardoe of AFP Interiors, LLC says you can also turn them into candle holders. "Carve out the inside enough to fit a candle in a glass container or a votive, drop in the candle and light it! Use all white pumpkins for a modern look or mix it up and use a variety of colors and sizes for a more casual feeling," she explains.
Long after summer comes to a close, you can continue to use flower pots and planters. Pardoe recommends displaying mums. "Mums are hearty, come in many colors and are easy to move around when used in containers. The specific selection would depend on the colors on the house and the style of the house. A modern house would look great with a monochromatic color scheme with a variety of textures. A more casual style house would look great with a mix of colors," she explains.
Fall is often associated with the start of a new school year. To embrace the spirit of the season, consider displaying school-related objects on your front porch. Samarotto says, "You could try a stack of textbooks sitting on a small bale of hay with some scattered leaves to make a wonderful display under a covered patio."
If pumpkins and mums are too traditional for your tastes, consider displaying them with a decorative prop or two. For a casual home, Pardoe recommends items such as wreaths, bundled sheaves of grass, old signs, and benches or wood containers for stacking flower pots and grasses. "I would incorporate metal architectural elements, flower pots and orbs to a sleek chair or bench for a modern house," she adds. "Lighting in the form of candles or lanterns -- hanging or resting on a bench -- would be a great addition to any porch."
Look to metal, as well, says Desi Creswell of DEC Interior Design, LLC. "Old iron elements like a pitchfork or a rusted pail can be unique accessories for creating an outdoor vignette."
Meredith Clarin, creative director for floral design and event company Kitanim, says, "Porches lend themselves to layered looks: multiple décor items perched with a sense of style on each step. Utilize natural items to add to your layered look. Hay and barrels work well to prop décor items and give an extra sense of height."
In addition to these helpful tips, Pardoe shares some fundamental advice that can help you ensure your porch looks fabulous this fall. "Always coordinate your décor with the style and colors of your house. Your exterior décor should be an extension of your home, its style and your style," she says.
How to decorate with pumpkins
Pumpkins are good for uses besides pies and carving. Here are two!