Have you ever wanted to unlock your door with a fingerprint? Control the indoor and outdoor lights with your phone? You can do those things and more with a smart home. We show you how to get a home with connected technology and remote-operated devices that are designed to improve and simplify your life. We sift through the many options, including smart appliances, new apps, and smartphone and tablet innovation, and only bring you those that can make your life better. We give you tips and tricks for navigating the new home technologies and help you with buying decisions.See More
Fill your home with fall to last all season with these quick and easy nature-inspired decorating ideas.
Branch out from the standard round wreath and try a different shape on your front door. Hot-glue unshelled nuts to a picture frame, leaving a spot at the top for a ribbon. Wrap a coordinating ribbon around the top in a loop to create the wreath hanger.
Capture fall inside a bell jar set atop a shallow terra-cotta bulb dish. Line the dish with moss, add a few small gourds and branches of leaves, and top with a bell jar. You can also use a terrarium or even a glass cake cover to create this look. For added effect, arrange a few objects around the base of the dish.
For an organic look straight out of nature, be a little eclectic in your fall display and arrangements. Gather a variety of flowers, stems, fillers, and twigs and arrange at random. Use a rustic or vintage-looking vessel, such as a galvanized bucket, to complete the look.
Create a pretty swag from artichokes to hang on a mirror or stairway banister. You will need florist's greening pins (they look like long U-shape staples and are available at floral shops). Drill two small holes the width of the pin straight down into the top of each artichoke. Thread a 1-inch brass ring on the pin, then insert the pin into the holes. Add a dab of hot glue around each hole to secure. Thread ribbons through the rings, tie in a bow, and hang.
Turn pumpkin-patch finds into a unique centerpiece. Look for miniature squash with interesting shapes and colors to create a one-of-a-kind tabletop display. Group squash of similar colors and sizes together or line them up across the middle of the table. You can also use the squash as place settings, writing guests' names on them with permanent marker. At the end of the night, let guests take their squash home as a memento.
Two pages from a vintage nature calendar were the starting point for this nature-inspired mantel. To create this look, hang prints from twine and gather natural elements to complete the scene. A gnarly branch creates a focal point in the center and is surrounded by green moss balls and birch-bark candleholders. Bring natural flair into the room by adding a lush plant in front of the fireplace and placing floral-print pillows on the furniture.
Turn gourds into interesting vases and display them on a mantel. Hollow out hard-shell gourds to create vases you can use again and again. Cut off the tops and clean out the insides, then fill with flowers. Dress them up by painting a border around the base. Pair the vases with exotic flowers for an unexpected twist.
Bring nature indoors to extend your enjoyment of the season. Gather an armful of branches featuring fall foliage to create a colorful centerpiece. Look for leaves that aren't too dry and brittle, so your arrangement will last longer. Arrange branches in a vase or a hollowed-out pumpkin. Complete the look by adding pumpkins and gourds to the buffet or dining table.
Get crafty with your extra pumpkins and embellish them with leaves for a colorful addition to your fall decorating. Or skip pumpkin carving altogether, and decorate your pumpkins with paper designs. Cut out leaves using colored paper that complements the hue of your pumpkin. Use decoupage to attach the paper to the pumpkins.
Dress up pumpkins with wire for a rustic fall look. Get creative and wrap wire around the outside of the pumpkin like a ribbon, fit it around the entire surface like a spiderweb, or twist it in curlicues sprouting out of the stem. Look for pumpkins in colors other than orange for designs that last beyond Halloween.
Highlight the colors of fall by bringing the most vibrant leaves inside. Put individual leaves in small bud vases to draw attention to their unique details. Put several vases together for a collected look or place one leaf at each place setting. Scatter loose leaves on the table for a colorful backdrop.
Repurpose a set of candleholders to display pumpkins and gourds. Find a mismatched set at a garage sale or antiques store and spray-paint them all black for a unified look. Use candleholders of varying heights for visual interest.
Enjoy the fleeting days of fall long after the final leaves have fallen and the ground has frozen with autumn-inspired terrariums. Fill glass apothecary jars with tiny gourds and plant life to create a mini ecosystem. Place the terrarium in a spot that gets natural sunlight. For the best results, remove gourds and plants from jars at the end of your gathering and add water.