Decorating with fall colors

Story highlights

  • Autumn shades can be beautiful decorating color schemes all year
  • Don't want to commit to a lot of color? Try a bold lamp or foliage
  • Brown grays add soothing, sumptuous color to walls
The shades of autumn such as orange, yellow, dark green, rust and brown make lovely accents for the home. Muted fabrics and finishes are the perfect canvas for highlighting these bold colors.
Discover how you can bring the warm and wonderful hues of fall into your rooms: Click through the gallery above to see fall colors in beautiful home settings.
Red brown
Red browns have a warm, rosy glow. Salvaged doors inspired this Vermeer-like setting: Fabrics were selected for reddish tones that complement the wood. Texture and luster are important here, too: Daylight brings out the sheen of the velvet comforter and satin pillow, lending life to the room.
Dark yellow
On this daybed, opulent fabrics and a rich palette of burnt red, deep gold, and pale cream and gold create a sense of depth.
Forest Green
The intense green of these platters and seat cushions would overpower most other colors. But the rich brown of this furniture more than holds its own. Together, the two hues enhance each other, evoking the beauty of a forest. A bowl overflowing with ferns is a fitting woodland touch.
Dark red
An assortment of lacquered plates and trays creates a bold display in a living room. To color it red, lacquer is tinted with cinnabar or vermilion. Lacquer can also be dyed black, green, yellow, gold, or brown by adding various pigments, as in the lacquered eighteenth-century Chinese side table.
Orange backdrop
Paint the backs of bookcases in vibrant colors -- or just line them with colored paper -- to make your case pop.
Brown gray
In this dining room, the homeowner chose a dark stain for the table to set off painted chairs, as an antique sideboard stands out against the gray walls. The chandelier adds a hint of color.
Red damask
An ornate, vividly colored fabric, such as this Turkey red damask tablecloth, instantly adds warmth and a sense of refinement.
Utilizing a lone color scheme can be tricky; to avoid overpowering a room, seek out a color that is lively but not too bold, like this rich marigold.
Brown bedroom
A guest bedroom at Martha's home on Lily Pond Lane In East Hampton, New York, painted in a soothing gray-brown, is supremely simple in its decor.
A coppery-red arrangement of astilbe and celosia warms a cool-gray hallway. Above the flowers, a Directoire-style girandole holds a white porcelain model of a mandarin figure. A Chinese ceramic garden seat in a deep sang de boeuf red stands under the table.
Taupe walls
If you have ever wondered what taupe looks like, these dusky walls are your guide, with lustrous fabrics chosen to enhance and uplift its distinctive character. The daybed is the focus of an audacious assortment of mauves, lavenders, and lilac touches.
Yellow chair
This warm yellow upholstered chair is a cozy spot in a largely white-washed room.
Red foliage
One temporary way to bring autumn indoors is to create a natural display such as a blazing tree branch and greenish gourds.
Bold brown
In a luminous white setting, dark brown has the impact of black, without the harshness. This sofa is upholstered with velvet the color of bittersweet chocolate; white piping makes the fabric look even darker. A varied collection of smoky-glass bottles and vases lightens the mood.
Yellow velvet
Chrome-yellow velvet does more than create the trompe l'oeil effect of a gilded mirror frame. It provides the right visual temperature for a luxuriously refined room.
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Orange walls
This traditional English-style foyer, painted pumpkin-orange, offers a warm welcome to all who enter. Paired with plenty of whites -- the wainscoting, ceiling, risers, trim, and balusters -- the walls feel crisp, particularly when outlined with brown grosgrain ribbon (which is adhered with craft glue). The warm browns of the wood harmonize well with orange, animating and restraining it.
Yellow lamp
If you are not ready to commit to a large swath of color, consider an autumnal-hued accent, like this golden lamp with bold black shade.
More colorful ideas
Find decorating inspiration and easy projects: Decorating by color | Painting ideas & projects | DIY decorating ideas