The temperatures may still be high, but fall is in full swing—and with that, a whole new design scheme to look forward to. It might be easy to settle for kitchy autumn decor and old-fashioned carved pumpkins, but this Ormond Beach Mom and Gainesville native is here to show us how to take it up a notch with everything from eye-catching wreaths to floral patterned throw pillows.
Meet our creative friend Katie Randall, who is a next-level thematic decorator. Katie has always considered herself to be “crafty,” and speaks fondly of her days as a former school teacher where she collected most of her decorating decor. But it’s long-time family friend, Mary Ellen, who really inspired her passion and creativity, allowing her talent to shine.
Whether you’re busting into your storage containers for all of your favorite seasonal decor or looking for a fresh new take on autumnal home styling, Katie is giving us ten simple and sophisticated fall decor tips to transition your space for the season. Ahead, see how Katie has created the ultimate fall oasis inside of her home.
1. Set The Tone On The Front Porch
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Think about when people are driving by your house.
To Katie, the front door is the most important in terms of decorating and it’s the first place she decorates. She focuses on making sure people who drive by her home can see all of the outdoor decor, and even stands across the street so she can view it from different angles.
Outside of her front door, Katie always keeps two garden flags. The permanent fixture, a gator flag, is “always flying” and the second flag represents the current holiday or season (See similar one here). She has an “obsession” for her Cricut and loves personalizing her garden flags – in addition to many other decorating elements.
Katie loves plants and focuses on greenery when designing her outdoor space. The entry-way is a combination of vibrant plants incorporated with orange and white pumpkins. As a rule of thumb, Katie suggests clustering plants by “two groups on each side”.
2. Greet Guests With An Unforgettable Wreath
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Keep the same wreath up year-round, and add to it based on the season.
Katie’s stately wooden doors are adorned with two lush floral white wreaths. See a similar one here. When it comes to her wreaths, she keeps the same wreathes up year-round instead of constantly buying new ones. Her trick is to simply adjust and customize the wreath you have by sticking “little things on picks in them” like these pine cone and maple leaves or mini scarecrows instead of starting all over from scratch. This tip is especially helpful when holidays blend within seasons, such as beginning of fall, to Halloween through Thanksgiving.
3. A Festive Fall Foyer
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Change up your throw pillows.
According to Katie, a great way to create that cozy fall feeling is by simply swapping out your throw pillows. As soon as you enter through the front door, Katie has created a welcoming vignette. Her foyer bench is filled with velvet and leopard satin pillows (see similar ones here), right away giving visitors the impression that she would like them to sit and stay for a while!
4. Create A Mood With A Tablescape
Katie’s Decorating Tip: You don’t have to buy all new tableware to make it feel autumn-appropriate
The best way to set the mood of your dining room? A killer fall tablescape, complete with seasonal centerpieces and place settings. Katie covered her table in miniature white pumpkins, mixed in with other materials, like fall foliage. What was really interesting is that she kept her same year-round chargers (see similar ones here), but mixed in metallic and other fall elements to set the fall-tone.
5. A Full-Of-Life Kitchen
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Have the florist arrange flowers in a vase on location, then carry them wrapped to be placed in your own vase at home.
There’s nothing quite like a kitchen with eye-catching autumn colored blooms. Like most homes during a party, Katie’s kitchen is the center of activity. One of Katie’s non-negotiables when it comes to holiday decorating is always having fresh seasonal flowers in her home. Every week she visits Simply Roses to ensure not just her kitchen – but home – is always looking fresh and beautiful for company.
6. Infuse Your Home With Decadent Aromas
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Don’t toss half used candles! Good candles are expensive. Instead, pack and store them away for the following year.
Nothing is quite as cozy as a candle-lit abode. Set the mood for the fall season by filling it with your favorite Autumn scents. Katie rotates the candles based on the season and time of year. Check out Daytona Beach Mom’s favorite fall scent by Diptyque here
7. Liven Up Your Outdoor Space
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Get creative — think succulent-topped pumpkins.
Katie most certainly did not leave her backyard out of the fun! She made her outdoor patio the perfect autumnal entertaining area by bringing the indoors outside. The same metallic and jewel toned hues she carried throughout her home can also be found in her breezy backyard living area. Our favorite touch? She somehow sawed off the top of her decorative pumpkins and plated the perfect assortments of succulents inside of them.
8. Sweeten The Scene
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Leave seasonal sweet treats out for your guests.
What’s better than edible decor? When expecting friends, Katie gets decorative – and delicious – cookies from Cakery Creation, because as we all know, fresh cookies are a great holiday mood-setter.
And what better way to get guests mingling than an enticing bowl of candy? Katie’s crystal gator dish offers a variety of ever-changing seasonal treats throughout the year. This year it is filled with nostalgic candy corn. Nothing says fall like a dish full of the sweet orange, yellow and white treats.
9. Always Have – And Offer – Food And Wine
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Don’t forget about the kids! Create their own snack board.
Katie has four non-negotiables when it comes to hosting; food and alcohol are the top two. She focuses on shopping for, building, and serving cheese boards that will “wow” her guests. For cheese, Katie’s go-to destination is Bon Gourmet, and she loves how they always label the cheeses. For festive serving platters, Molto Bella Boutique, and Elements of Design are her favorites.
We loved how Katie created a separate heart-shaped snack board for the kids. They automatically felt special and most importantly, were not hungry!
10. Decorate Throughout The House – But Don’t Go Overboard
Katie’s Decorating Tip: Taking a picture always seems to tell you if a room is too-cluttered or needs more holiday love.
Katie’s son, James, initiates the entire decorating process. He’s the one that will say “we need to decorate.” James helps Katie by putting things “everywhere” and Katie will re-arrange, thin-out, or add, based on James’ suggestions.
Looking for more seasonal spirit? Check out The Best Halloween Books For Kids.