Have you noticed a snap of cold in the air lately? Children are surprisingly absent from the streets, trees are slowly starting to change, and the sun is setting earlier - Autumn is here! With all the wedding planning and renovations we feel like we barely saw summer but we've still decided to embrace fall. We got a full dose of creative inspiration and took it out on our porch.
It started with pulling two yellow pillows and two small rugs off of the porch and into the guest bedroom (check out the sneak peek!) We knew we wouldn't be eating outside at all in the winter, so we packed away all the plastic dishes and silverware until spring comes again. With all those items gone, the porch started to feel empty and a little less loved, so we brainstormed a new accent color (ORANGE!) and went to work at creating a cozy autumn retreat.
Changing the layout
When we closed on the house in April, 2010 the porch was just an empty box
We needed to keep the walkways clear and in the spring we had such beautiful peonies blooming in the yard that we wanted to make the outside view (not the big brown side-of-the-house view) the focus of the porch. So we put a love seat in the middle of the room facing the windows with the back to the walkway. We loved the view of our yard and were still able to enjoy talking with friends.
Although this summer setup felt cozy, we wanted something different now that it's getting colder and nature is hibernating for awhile. So we rearranged the furniture to maximize space, to allow for easily putting on boots before running out into the snow, and to store our grill inside for the winter:
Changing the colors
With the porch furniture rearranged, we focused on color! For the summer we had shades of yellow, blue and green.
Autumn needed earth tones - brown and orange! The porch walls were already brown and we had lots of wood decorations without a spot in the house just yet so all we needed to add was some orange.
With a $50 budget, Katrina went to town finding, and even making, inexpensive decor.
How to stretch $4.50 into simple fall decorations
I'm learning a lot about how to stretch a decoration budget from watching Katrina work. Here are two things that blew my mind:
$3 Ikea Potpourri
Katrina picked up this potpourri in a box from Ikea. It's ready to go, all you need to do is set it out, but Katrina had other plans. Why put one big chunk of orange in one place when you can spread it all around the room? She took the orange box and put brown napkins in it (you could put anything brown you like in there!) then spread the potpourri out into a bunch of brown bowls we already had.
$1.50 framed art
She also took 3 pages of scrap booking paper (usually about 50 cents each, but she already had them) and cut out 4x6 rectangles. She put them in a picture frame we already own and Voilà!
Katrina also picked up an orange garbage can, two candles (brown and orange), two place mats, an orange throw blanket, and two boxes (to store some of the plastic dishes for the fall in case there is a warm day and we decide we still do want to eat outside!) And all for a total of: $25!
Some of the re-purposed items include: brown and cream pillows from the basement, green baskets previously on the porch, Peruvian display plates, cream candles, curtain scraps to create a small table, and lots of wooden dishes.
Have you started decorating for autumn? Do you have any inexpensive fall decorating ideas to share?