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Fall Closet Makeover

The air is crisp, the leaves are changing to brilliant hues of red and gold, and the farm stands are bursting with pumpkins and apples: fall has arrived. As you shift your wardrobe from lighter early-autumn pieces to cozier items, why not take this opportunity to do a fall closet makeover, too? Read on for ideas and inspiration to make it happen.

closet organization
Unfancy

Your first task, if you choose to accept it, is to pull everything (yes, everything!) out of your closet and assess it. Try items on if you’re not sure about them. Keep pieces that are currently in season, fit you well, are in good condition, and that feel good. Other pieces that you love — but are no longer in season — should go in a storage bin or secondary closet until they are needed. Items you don’t love, or no longer fit, should go in a bag destined for the nearest charity or textile recycling bin.

Even if your closet is small, make the most of it by using a mix of hanging rods, shelves, and bins, as shown above. To get organized, store shoes on open shelves to prevent the dreaded shoe pileup, keep sweaters and other soft items in bins, and use a set of matching hangers for a uniform look. And to keep your closet looking this good, keep a basket on the floor to collect giveaway items.

closet organization 2
Unfancy

Once your closet is looking better, it’s time to think about how you organize the outfits you’re planning to wear. One idea I love is using a freestanding garment rack (like the one shown here) to hang up the coming week’s outfits, along with shoes and bags. Taking a little time with a cup of tea (and some good music on) to shop your closet and put together outfits is a wonderful way to start the new week ahead of the game.

Erin Spain
Erin Spain

The last step is to make sure you’re handling your accessories with care. Messy piles of scarves and tangled heaps of necklaces will only make getting ready in the morning more difficult! One simple solution is to repurpose a tall bookcase as your accessories display. Fill the shelves with pretty baskets and bowls, hang a mirror on the wall, and attach some hooks for hanging up necklaces. For extra-credit, back the bookcase with gorgeous wallpaper!

Closet organization 3
Manifesto Photography for Quentin & Co.

Here is another beautiful example of a tall bookcase being used as a closet organizer, with shelves devoted to jewelry, bags, shoes, and sweaters. If you don’t have a proper closet, try combining a bookcase with a garment rack (or two) and a chest of drawers, to make a dressing area right in your bedroom.

Once your wardrobe has been decluttered and your closet organized, what’s next? A super-plush rug to sink your bare toes into, of course! My favorite type of rug for the dressing area is a cozy Moroccan-style rug — see below for four great options. And happy fall!

Rug Shopping Guide: All are included in the beautiful Jaipur Rugs Zuri Collection.

For more inspiration from Laura, follow along with her at LauraGaskill.com!

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Creative Seating Options

House Doctor

Sometimes our homes call on us to be more creative than usual. Whether it’s due to a lack of space or a lack of furnishings, when the bell tolls we comb through the file folders in our minds and answer. And one of the more common issues that I’ve come across is seating at the dining table.

I’m starting way outside the box from the get-go with stools and end tables. When you’re looking to pull up a few more seats look around at what you’ve already got nearby. Most of the aforementioned are a perfect height for a dining table and guests will think you’re wildly ingenious (which, of course, you are!).

Bruce Buck

The idea of adding a bench on one side of your dining room table in place of two chairs has been growing in popularity for some time now, and it’s been growing on me as well. What I really like about it – aside from the aesthetic look – is that you can squeeze an extra person in on that side with hardly any compromise.

Ashley Poskin

Adding sheepskins or cushions to a melange of “whatever you’ve already got” around the table is an easy way of unifying it all. Record crates, stacks of large coffee table books – so long as it’s moderately sturdy it will do just fine. You can even use your coffee table as a stand-in bench!

Esteban Cortez

This is one of my favorites – having an extra piece of small seating that lives in the same room, but that doesn’t have to be used at the table. Pull the table and chairs a bit away from this vintage settee and you have an extra seating area, but leave as is and you can magically seat six. Super functional decorating at work!

Kim Lucian

If you’re thinking ahead for a specific event you can bring in temporary seating that’s both cheap and innovative. You’ve likely seen hay bales used outdoors, but check out the above and see how great they can work indoors as well. You could also use stacked pallets with cushions or benches created out of cement blocks and two by fours.

The Selby

There’s also the option of going entirely bohemian and taking it all to the floor. Move all of the furniture in your living room against the walls and throw all of the pillows on the rug. You and your guests can spread out and enjoy!

Rugs-Direct-Collage

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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5 Tips for Decorating on a Budget

Lauren Edith Andersen
Lauren Edith Andersen

Every autumn the urge strikes me to get every room in the house shipshape before the holiday landslide hits. The conundrum, of course, is that the holidays can be pricey and I probably shouldn’t be spending a ton of money on myself – I should be socking it away to put towards lovely things for other people! I’m a single woman on a budget, so I try and stick to these five rules throughout the year when it comes to decorating my space which helps more than I can say when I decide I want to change a few things up.

1/ Stick to neutrals
The more a piece costs, the more likely I am to choose it in a neutral to give it a longer life. When your tastes change it’s much easier to make an off white or light grey sofa fit with your new aesthetic than that red one you were considering. (I still thank my mom for talking me out of that decision in my first apartment!) This line of thought also extends to other pieces – large indoor planters, floor rugs, throw pillows – that I think I might like to switch between rooms at some point.

Pampa

2/ Paint is your friend
One gallon of paint will easily accommodate two coats in most rooms and is some of the best decorating money you can spend. Nothing will change up the vibe of a space faster! Keep in mind that lighter colors will make a room feel larger, make wall art pop, and serve as a general canvas for whatever else you plan on putting in it. Darker walls (I’ve been so tempted to paint my dining room black!) are moody, and while they might make a room feel smaller they can also make them oh so cozy. You can even change up an entire piece of furniture or create your own art – so many possibilities.

Design*Sponge

3/ Be a scavenger
Some of my best finds have been found at online sales sites (Everything But the House, Chairish, etc), garage sales, or simply sitting out with someone else’s trash. A chair with great bones can be recovered, a credenza with some nicks can be rehabbed. If you’re willing to put in a little time or elbow grease you can save oh so much money and own some very unique pieces for your home.

Decoholic

4/ Plan the splurges
Maybe you’ve long dreamed of owning a leather couch or four posted bed, something that you’re certain you’ll be hanging on to for some time. All that’s required is a little strategic planning, AKA saving up. This always helps me stay away from impulse purchases – usually accessories – that I really don’t need. Eyes on the big picture!

Royal Roulotte

5/ See things differently
That trunk you found on the sidewalk would be a great coffee table with built-in storage space. The old dining chair from that estate sale perfectly fits next to your bed as a table. Get my drift? Start thinking outside the box more when it comes to your decor and all of a sudden the things that make up your home no longer need to be relegated to one lonely purpose. One last example: floor rugs make for great wall art.

Rugs-Direct-Collage

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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3 Tips for a More Peaceful Morning Routine

How your morning goes can set the tone for the entire day. Just think back to the last frantic day you had, and I’m sure you’ll agree! Instead of starting with the snooze button, skipped breakfast, and forgotten appointments, why not cultivate a more calming routine, instead? Read on for 3 key ingredients to consistently create more peaceful, positive mornings.

Yvestown
Yvestown

Key Ingredient No. 1: A good night’s rest. There’s no getting around it, if you want to bounce out of bed ready to greet the day with a positive mindset, you’ve got to have enough sleep! As a former night owl, I can assure you that (while not entirely pleasant) it is possible to adjust your sleep schedule and become a morning lark. Start winding down a bit earlier each night, put away the screens (pick up a book instead), and begin to dim the lights to create a more restful ambiance. A neat and tidy bedroom, free of clutter, with fresh sheets on the bed and a cozy rug underfoot doesn’t hurt, either.

VT Wonen
VT Wonen

Key Ingredient No. 2: Create a cozy morning nook. While you’re waking up, bleary eyed and wondering what on earth possessed you to set the alarm so early, it can really help to have an inviting nook to retreat to. This should be somewhere in your home that gets lovely morning light, and includes a comfy spot to sit. Use this space to practice a nourishing morning routine like writing in a journal, recording a list of things you are grateful for, reading uplifting books, or meditating. Open the shades, let in a bit of fresh air, and greet the new day with positive intentions.

Local Milk
Local Milk

Key Ingredient No. 3: Slow down and savor your favorite simple pleasures. Ahh, the rich scent of freshly roasted coffee beans, golden light streaming in the window… Instead of gulping down your first cup of coffee or tea as quickly as possible, consider slowing down and savoring those few precious moments of morning peace. As you sip, think about how you would like your day to unfold. A beautiful morning is bound to lead to good things!

Morning Rugs

Rugs fit for a morning nook (clockwise from top left): Surya DwellStudio Riad; Surya Lotta Jansdotter Decorativa in dark purple; Surya Lotta Jansdotter Decorativa in dark blue; Surya Jill Rosenwald Orinocco Webs in cream and mauve.

For more inspiration from Laura, follow along with her at LauraGaskill.com!

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