6 DIY Autumn-Themed Decor

Autumn marks the beginning of several holidays to come, and what better way to kick start it than to deck the house in autumn-themed decor? Craft stores like Michael’s sell festive decorations that you can purchase, but we’ve discovered ways you can achieve the same quality looks on a tighter budget! Transform your home with these six cost-efficient crafts.

1. Autumn Accent Wreath, $15 or less

Festive Wreath.jpgYou’ll Need:
Wreath base (wire or wooden)
Autumn leaf garland
Hot glue gun and glue
Accent piece (flower, pine cone, bow, etc.)
Artificial leaves (optional)

Why spend $30 or more on an autumn wreath that you’ll likely replace within months when you can create your own for half the price? Snag everything you need at your local Jo-Ann Store. Be sure to check the weekly ad for coupons (Jo-Ann also accepts A.C. Moore and Michael’s coupons), or if you prefer to shop online, Ebates offers a 1 percent cash back for the Jo-Ann website.

First, you’ll need a wire or wooden wreath base. Next, purchase a mini hot glue gun if you don’t already own one, maple leaf garland and an accent piece, which can be flowers, pine cones, bows, additional leaves, or something else. This is your time to get creative! Once you have all of your materials, arrange your faux leaf garland around your wreath base, followed by your accent garnish. Before making your decorations permanent with your hot glue gun, be sure you like their placement. Once you’ve decided on a design, simply glue everything to the base. The glue dries in just seconds, so you can immediately hang your craft.

2. Candle Centerpiece, $5-$20

Candle Centerpiece.jpg
Photographed by Christina Fontaine.

You’ll Need:
Mason jar candle holder
Festive ribbon
Hot glue gun and glue
Tealight candle
Pine cones (optional)

Check your local Dollar Tree for mason jar tea light candle holders that you can use as your base. If you can’t find it in store, you can grab this three-pack for $9.99. Fill jar bottoms with your favorite scented potpourri, making sure not to fill potpourri above the candle holder. Next, hot glue a ribbon of your choice around the upper portion of the jar for a festive splash. Don’t forget to put the candle in–once lit, the centerpiece comes to life. You can even lay assorted pine cones around the mason jar base for extra flair.

3. “Falling Leaves” Door Decor, $10-$15

Door Decor.jpg
Photographed by Christina Fontaine.

You’ll Need:
Autumn leaf garland
Festive ribbon/bow (optional)
Command Party Banner Anchors
Artificial leaves (loose)
Damage-free tape

Create a unique sliding door design with just a few simple items. Start with a string of maple leaf garland like this one from Hobby Lobby (a 2 percent cash back on Ebates). Attach it along the top of your door using these damage-free anchors. You can also choose to add ribbon, a bow, or other decoration along the door’s corners and sides. For the door itself, tape loose maple leaves along its width using this removable poster tape, concentrating along the door’s top to offer the illusion of leaves “falling” from the maple leaf garland. Taper leaves off the door’s length to your discretion, and voilà, that’s it; consider your sliding doors transformed for autumn!

4. Pumpkin Stack Accent, $5-$15

Pumpkin Stack.jpgYou’ll Need:
3 faux pumpkins
Hot glue gun and glue
Accent leaf bundle/brush (optional)

Find foam pumpkins for your stack as cheap as $1 per pumpkin at both Dollar Tree and Walmart or check out these polyurethane pumpkins in various sizes and colors at Target. Once you’ve made your purchase, decide how you want to arrange them, or if you bought different sized pumpkins, stack them from biggest on bottom to smallest on top. Make sure to cut the stems off the bottom and middle pumpkins before gluing so they’ll stack. Then, hot glue them on top of each other, leaving the top pumpkin’s stem intact. You can also garnish your pumpkin stack with brushes of leaves or berries by hot gluing them on and around the pumpkins. This YouTube video by The Magnolia Housewife details the process step-by-step.

5. Autumn String Lights, $10 or less

LightsYou’ll Need:
Christmas lights (your choice in color)
Plain white tennis/ping pong balls
Hot glue gun and glue
Command Party Banner Anchors
Exacto knife
Black sharpie marker
Autumn stencils (optional)

While not necessarily the most expensive item on this list, store-bought themed lights can still add up if you’re looking to decorate a large space and need multiple packages–especially since some lights require AA batteries to operate. Instead, utilize something you may already have: Christmas lights. But, if you don’t have any handy, Target sells these orange colored lights to better fit our fall theme. Next, grab ping pong or plastic table tennis balls and cut a hole in each just large enough to fit your bulb. Using a black Sharpie (and stencil if you so choose), color a leaf pattern on each ball, opposite where you cut a hole. You can even draw jack-o’-latern faces or ghost designs if you’d like. This will create a cool shadow effect once lit. Finally, place each plastic ball onto each bulb, and secure with your hot glue gun by placing a thin layer of glue around each hole where the ball and the bulb’s end meet. Now, you’re ready to hang them anywhere!

6. Rustic Photo Display, $15 or less

Branch Photo DisplayYou’ll Need:
Real or artificial branch
Photo Clips
Autumn leaf garland (optional)

Replace your boring photo display with our rustic, seasonal twist. If finding a branch from the great outdoors doesn’t strike you, many craft stores sell artificial branches you can use. Conversely, if you do want to locate a branch from outdoors, you should treat it to preserve it. Check out this tutorial. Next, you’ll need twine and clips to attach photos to your branch.

First, cut your twine in varying lengths, making sure each length is long enough to display multiple photos. Next, tie twine around your branch in sections, making sure to leave enough twine to hang below your branch. Then, tie a knot around each clip. Finally, use clips to secure photos and you have your very own autumn photo display! For more decor, add leftover leaf garland or loose leaves from the above mentioned projects.

6 DIY Autumn-Themed Decor: Featured image photographed by Christina Fontaine