Aren’t you ready for a change in season? I’m gathering ideas after digging out my stored Fall decorations to start our decorating transition from Summer to Fall. A big part of that transition from one season to another is to clean and refresh the areas as I switch-out the decor. Some areas will not get another cleaning until the next season, Winter, change. That does not mean I spend any more time though on cleaning, Know that saying, “Just get it done”?
I will take you through my process in coming weeks, with a quick post of my progress so we can do this together. If we do a little each week, SIMPLE tasks, by September we will have that cozy feel of Fall to enjoy throughout the holidays. As particular holidays approach we can gradually add more stuff, but not knock ourselves out by doing it all in one weekend. When Thanksgiving or gathering of family & friends arrives don’t YOU want to concentrate on the meal and the good company, and not worry about cleaning and decorating?
Let’s Get Started…
(Prep: If you have a box of Fall decorations pull it out. If you don’t, no worries, grab a pen and paper and jot down ideas of what you can buy or make to use. I don’t need to add much, if any, to my decorations. But I still make two lists; one I call “BUY LIST” for shopping & replacement items, like new candles or light bulbs, the second list I call, “TO DO LIST”, for repairs and ideas (yes, that is a Honey-Do list.) These lists develop as I clean and decorate, some things end up being crossed off but at least don’t have a good list to refer to later. I start by looking at the accumulated items in my Fall storage boxes to see if I can come up with a new Fall color scheme. This year I decided on a cooler color palette; burgundy, maroon, ocher and green. Now I know if I purchase anything to keep that palette in mind, but first I will try to use what I have.
Week 1, the Porch: (if you don’t have a porch do your inside entryway) Imagine you are a “guest” coming into your home, their experience really begins at the front door. Let’s make sure that first impression conveys the Warmth of Fall. Remember, we are doing a QUICK Mini Cleanup, so let’s focus only on the door, and surfaces that a guest sees while standing to be let in. For instance, I have a couple of windows, a door, a bench, a bistro table/chairs, some ratty looking plants and a porch light. Oh, and the walkway. I am trying to keep each task to 5 minutes although some may take 10 minutes. Chances are you will enjoy the decorating, so do move quickly and don’t over-think the cleaning.
- Remove – what you can for now from the area so you can clean…cushions and doormat, door wreath. Get rid of dead foliage also.
- Dirt, dust, cobwebs & leaves – Use a leaf blower, broom or water hose to quickly clear debris from the porch, walkway, tables and chairs. Shake off the doormat or rug if it is going to be reused.
- Front door – clean using a wet cloth. Be sure to get into the little crevices and clean the hardware.
- Light Fixture – Wipe with a wet cloth to remove dust, clean glass and replace bad bulbs.
- Windows – use window cleaner to clean windows,wipe down the trim too. This is quick, outside only.
Ok, that’s it for cleaning…now the fun part!
- Door & Wall Decor – I am not a huge fan of silk flowers but with this drought/water metering and extreme summer heat, real flowers are not possible. So I went to the local Dollar store and bought 2 purple and 1 yellow bunch of silk flowers to add to the white mums from a July 4th door basket/wreath. The look of nature, whether real or faux looks inviting but be sure to keep it fresh (if real) and dusted (if faux.) My “Welcome Friends” scarecrow was in my storage box, I hang it to fill the wall space with color.
- Bring in Fall color through fabric – Cushions/pillows on a bench or chair creates a pretty resting spot. To do a quick No-Sew cushion cover each season use a throw or fabric remnant secured on the backside with pins over an old cushion or stack of batting, HERE is how it looked last Christmas. It’s super cheap and if you leave it out in bad weather it can be easily washed.
- Staging Containers for Vignettes – Use an old wagon, flower container, ladder or buckets to display pumpkins, gourds or even apples. I will do this in late September by stacking pumpkins on my bench and fill an apple bucket with green apples. Tip: Fill a rustic basket with fall fruits to add a lovely a layer of color & texture to any room.
- Light fixture: Recently, I replaced my porch light with a more industrial style fixture. The vintage Edison light bulb adds to that style. It is easy to rewire a new fixture, just follow the directions included in the box. Tip: Take a photo of the wires while the old fixture is attached…this time I had to remark the black wire because it was covered with overspray paint years ago by the builder.
Wow, that gives a great start to Fall and motivates me to keep moving ahead! Next week I move inside to do the fireplace mantle. I hope to work in my cool color palette there too. I may include a DIY construction project – if it works..
Thanks for Meeting Me Lakeside,