Wouldn’t you be thrilled if you could decorate your house for the fall without spending a dime? Couldn’t you just fall in love with a home full of warm orange, yellow and brown colors that embellish candles, picture frames and more – but never open your wallet? You can! If there’s even one tree in your yard that’s shedding fall leaves you’re in business! Gather soft, pliable leaves, wash and dry them, and in no time you’ll have brand new everything! Okay, maybe I’m getting a little too enthusiastic; everything won’t be brand new, but it certainly will feel like it – and look like it!
You just won’t believe all the things you can do with ordinary leaves. If you have no money to spend at all you can still create dozens of new things, but if you want to spend a few dollars, you’ll have tons more! Start with simple projects, like setting a leaf on a plate and placing a candle on top, to more extensive projects like using double-sided tape to arrange a leaf pattern on a wooden cornice.
If you don’t have any colorful leaves in your backyard, or you just don’t have time to gather and wash them, you can purchase bags of beautiful fake leaves at any craft store. Leaves area also available on a vine which is good for decorating large areas, like around a mantle.
Mix the leaves with dry potpourri and set them in the kitchen or bathroom. Or, place a strand of orange or white lights inside a clear vase or jar. Arrange leaves – real or fake – around the lights, and down into the vase. It’s optional to sprinkle in some dry potpourri. Place a piece of lace or a doily over the top of the vase and secure it with a rubber band. Tie a ribbon around the band. This little lamp can be used in a bedroom, living room or den.
Pour leaves into a foil pan to instantly create fall theme. You can cut the pan down to size, cover it with gold foil or wrap it in fall-theme cloth. Drop in things you’ve collected from the yard, like tiny pine cones, pieces of bark, small sticks and even little gourds. This quick and easy craft allows you to give an instant fall theme to a bathroom, bedroom or kitchen. Instead of a foil pan you can use an ordinary picture frame. The frame should be the type that has no standing hardware so that it will lie flat on most any surface. Arrange leaves, then set some small fall-theme soaps on them, or create something much different. Place a fall-theme picture inside and use the frame as a serving tray.
Decorate a candle in a unique way. Position a leaf on the front of a large pillar candle. Push a decorative pin or needle into the top of the leaf to secure it. Now add more and more pins, around the edges of the leaf, until you’ve completely outlined it. Make sure the pins are evenly spaced. Or, do a different design. Place the leaf, then completely cover it with pins, to make a metallic leaf shape on any large candle.
Make a table centerpiece in no time by using double-sided tape or glue dots to cover a dinner plate with leaves. Turn the plate upside-down, arrange the leaves, then set a candle on the plate. The plate can be a saucer or something similar. Other things can be added to the leaves, like glitter, dry potpourri pieces, or just pieces of mulch. Instead of a candle you can set a pile of pine cones, a Halloween character, or branches painted orange. Use a piece of Styrofoam under the leaves to hold the sticks and small branches that form the orange trees. Even tiny leaves can be glued to the branches to make mini trees for the centerpiece.
Make a different centerpiece by starting with a Styrofoam cone. Push round suckers into the cone, working from bottom to top. Glue or tape toothpicks to the backs of leaves and push them in, between the suckers, until the tree is finished. This centerpiece is edible and beautiful.
Use leaf-theme napkins to make a cute valance over your kitchen curtains. Open the napkins all the way, then lay them over the top of the curtain rod. Place them so that the pattern is facing the room and so that the point of that image is facing downward. Overlap them, across the rod, so that the diamond-shaped images are side-by-side. Use vine-type leafs from a craft store to make the valance out of a string of leaves.
Print out pictures of leaves, trees and other fall themes. Cut them out and glue them to bars of soap. Use decoupage adhesive, found at any craft store, to attach the pictures. Brush a layer of glue onto the soap, position the picture, then brush a layer of glue over the image. When it’s dry, brush on another layer, then another. After three or four layers allow to dry completely. Now you or your guests can use these fall-theme soaps even though the image will eventually wash away. They’re cute and fun to make – for pennies.
Double-sided tape or glue strips can be used to attach leaves to picture frames, lampshades, cornices, wooden chair backs, cabinet doors, mirrors, baseboards, shower curtains, toy boxes, hampers, plant pots, throw pillows, curtain tie-backs, valances and much, much more. The tape or glue strips allow you to easily remove the designs when you’re ready for a change. It’s fun and easy to do you’ll want to cover everything in leaves. Don’t get too carried away, though, or no one will know if they’re inside or out!