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Archive for Sunday, October 20, 2002

Let home capture sensation of autumn

October 20, 2002

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Do you find you change your attitude when the seasons change? You look at things differently and your mood makes note of the transition. So can your home. The change of seasons can give a kick-start to room-freshening projects and ideas.

As summer fades, it's time to pull out quilts and comforters. It's time to build a warm nest for the cool weather ahead. Autumn is one of the easiest seasons to absorb, because its palette of reds, yellows, greens and browns is comforting and mellow. Besides, it's easy to decorate with nature leaves, gourds, pumpkins and bittersweet.

Textures from wood grains, pottery, wheat and Indian corn help showcase the abundant harvest. Candles displayed in cutout gourds are good ways to mark the season, as are vases of dried pods or hydrangea from the garden. Lighting a fire adds the glow and removes the chill in the air.

Sometimes it's as easy as flip-flopping the furniture arrangement. Part of the year, the seating may not face the fireplace. Come autumn, it's more appropriate to face the fireplace and a new perspective is gained.

Here are some easy ways to let your home take the aura of autumn:

Fill glass canning jars with dried beans and legumes from the grocery store. Group warm-colored candles on a table for instant glow. Be sure not to leave candles unattended.

While cool and clean is right for summer, add some layers with comforters and quilts and some texture with tapestry and needlepoint pillows.

Neutral colors for an autumn backdrop don't have to be dull. Pattern and texture and a touch of bright color add to the comfortable feel of fall.

Turn gourds into candleholders by cutting off the top, cleaning out the center with an ice cream scoop and setting the candle in the hollow, secured with florist's clay. Decorate with berries, pods and leaves.

l Fill a pottery or earthenware bowl with autumn's best apples. Trim with colorful leaves for a natural centerpiece.

Nestle a chunky candle in the middle of a clean glass salad, punch or trifle bowl. Fill in around it with apples or small fruits. If you wish, use a short candle and elevate it on an aluminum can, surrounded by the fruits.

No fireplace? No matter. Gather candles on a tray to light for an effective glow.

Bring out your baskets to display books, linens and flatware. The texture will be pleasing.

For tabletop displays, mix items of various textures. Be sure to include rough and smooth, shiny and dull. Show off ceramic birds or sheep.

Use textured fabrics to add the look of warmth on tabletops and side tables. To mix patterns easily, stay with one color and add a stripe or mini-pattern that coordinates with the main print.

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