As reliably as back-to-school commercials in July, and Halloween candy at the pharmacy in August, come Labor Day we start to crave a little shift in our living environment—one that involves a few less sandy towels and window AC units, and a few more fuzzy throws and rustic accents. Since we can't go so far as to line our apartment interiors in logs and install a wood-burning fireplace for the season, we've found a few lower-commitment ways to embrace autumn.
1. There is one decor item that shoots to the top of our wish list the moment the mercury drops: a timeless wool throw from Pendleton. You can't go wrong with the Portland brand's classic Northwestern-feeling motifs, and this autumn-hued ottoman is the perfect accent piece to change up your space.
Francine Ottoman, Pendleton, $585.
2. Event designer David Stark's tips for an outdoor autumn picnic have us thinking about the kind of casual entertaining essentials that make the signature foods of fall feel so special. And his cheese plate directives in particular seem to require a classier cutting tool, like this painted piece, reminiscent of an old camp knife.
Folding Cheese Knife, Son of a Sailor, $68.
3. Sure, you don't replace your window hardware seasonally, but if you've been procrastinating on picking curtain tie-backs, these are a solid bet that will feel appropriately spare come winter, and like cherry blossoms branches when spring finally rolls around.
Branch Curtain Tie-Back, Urban Outfitters, $16 or 2 for $25.
4. Summer may be all about stars and stripes, but those most American of materials, denim and chambray, are the stuff of fall. These hand-printed cocktail napkins feature a motif that lies somewhere between Native American textiles and minimalist tattoos, and wood look perfect atop a barn-wood table. Perhaps to your new cheese accoutrement?
Chambray Cocktail Napkins, AHeirloom, 4 for $38.
5. They say scent is the strongest sense tied to memory, and campfire is the strongest scent tied to all things wonderfully autumn. Notes of tobacco mixed with charred birch and cedar will take you right from crunching leaves to coniferous trees.
Log Haus Candle, Haus Interior, $34.
6. One of the simplest things to change up is your selection of coffee table books. Stick that beach house bible back on the shelf and say hello to this stunning tome, documenting remarkable houses in alluringly wild settings.
Hide and Seek: The Architecture of Cabins and Hide Outs, $60, Gestalten.
7. These sugar skull plates from World Market are intended, of course, for celebrating el Dia de los Muertos, but TBH, we have no intention of putting them away once the souls go back to rest. Halloween stuff = new goth chic, year round.
Muertos Plates, 4 for $27.96, World Market.
8. Every fallified room needs a good nubby throw. Plaid or cable knit are the obvious choices, but this woven art piece by Los Angeles studio All Roads Design is a an un-trope-y statement that won't make your place look like a Lifetime movie set.
Collaged Majida Throw, $148, Anthropologie.