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7 Tips to Transition Your Outdoor Living Space for Fall

Outdoor living area ideas

Autumn is approaching, so it’s nearly time to start putting away the grills and table umbrellas. It can be sad to see summer go, but now is the perfect opportunity to start planning a fall outdoor living setup.

Spending time in an outdoor living space doesn’t have to be limited from May to September. Here are seven tips to transform your outdoor living space for fall.

Hang Outdoor Lights

As fall gets closer, the long sunny evenings move further away. A 7:00 p.m., gathering in August could be in broad daylight, while the same gathering in October will be in the dark.

Adding lights to an outdoor living space will keep the parties going. String lights can hang around a gathering space, adding a nice glow to any fall evening. There are manual lights that plug in or solar lights that recharge themselves during the sunny hours.

String lights also come in a variety of colors and shapes. Warm whites and golds are great options for lighting up the space while keeping a nice autumn atmosphere.

Small lanterns or path lights ensure everyone can safely enter and exit the space.

Add Fall Plants to Planters

Fall means it’s time to trade those geraniums for marigolds. Adding fall plants to planters will thrive throughout the season and add a touch of life to a yard as other plants start to wither.

There are a variety of fall plants to match any desired color scheme. Some other good options are chrysanthemums, goldenrods, and violas.

Depending on the weather, planting in early September can ensure the most enjoyment from fall planters. 

Add Cozy Seating

Summer is a time to be moving in the sun, but as fall comes, so do cooler days perfect for curling up with a blanket and a good book or a soothing cup of tea.

Small, portable furniture can work fine in the summer, but fall is the time to consider upgrading to some cozier options. Wicker and composite furniture work great for fall setups on patios. They also can hold plush cushions and pillows to create a warm, welcoming outdoor space.

Large and comfortable furniture makes an outdoor living space more suitable for days of apple cider and curling up by the fire.

 Outdoor living area

Replace Outdoor Pillow and Throws

Another way to make an outdoor living space cozier for fall is to trade light, colorful outdoor throws and blankets for thicker, warmer-toned items.

The desire to curl up in outdoor furniture becomes more significant as the air becomes chillier. Having thicker blankets can help people stay outside longer than in the cool air.

Warmer colors can put everyone in the fall spirit. Deep reds and greens, browns, burnt orange, and cream are all great colors to incorporate into a fall setup. The choice of color can match autumn foliage or indoor fall decorations.

Add an Outdoor Fireplace

One of the best ways to keep people coming outside is to add a fireplace to an outdoor living space. A fireplace can be the perfect focal point for an outdoor gathering space that people are sure to congregate around.

Depending on the space, there are many options for outdoor fireplace designs. Adding an outdoor fireplace comes with the benefit of adding value to a home. Stone is a great fireplace material for outdoor spaces.

Make a Fall Produce Arrangement

Fall is a season of pumpkins, squashes, and other gourds that make excellent fall arrangements for any outdoor space. They can be intermixed with other greenery and decorations or put together for a stand-out piece.

Fall produce comes in various colors, so anyone can find gourds that fit their fall aesthetic. When it’s close to Halloween, they can even be carved into multiple designs to enjoy.

Add Wreaths and Garlands

Adding wreaths and garlands to outdoor space is a great way to turn an outdoor living space into a fall festival. Wreaths made from fall leaves and greenery can hang around the space and garlands can be stretched across the top and along railings.

Both can be purchased with fresh plants or as artificial decorations that can go up year after year.

Creating an Outdoor Fall Oasis

Autumn equals cloudier days and cool nights. It also means changing leaves, jack-o-lanterns, and warm beverages by the fire. Transitioning an outdoor space from summer to fall doesn’t take much time and creates a space where family and friends will want to gather and enjoy the crisp air.


Author: Evelyn Long is the editor-in-chief of Renovated. Her work focuses on interior and architectural design and has been published by Build Magazine, the National Association of REALTORS and other online publications.