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Vail Daily column: Decorate your space for the season

Fireplaces add a focal point — as well as warmth — to a room. Add a few Colorado-grown sunflowers to embrace all autumn has to offer.
Special to the Daily |

Technically summer isn’t behind us till mid-September, but with the already-cooler nights and days, it feels like autumn is nigh. The Farmer’s Almanac is predicting a colder-than-normal fall and winter for us. Autumn in the Rockies is splendid, but there’s no need to rush the cold weather. But as the days shorten and the air crisps, it’s a perfect opportunity to revamp your house for the season.

Here are a few tips to keep your home cozy and ready for fall festivities.

In the early part of autumn, there’s still enough daylight to enjoy your patio or deck. With more outdoor living spaces feeling like extended living rooms, it’s the perfect spot to relax with friends. Add a few cozy throws and even cushions or pillows to chairs, and if possible, use an outdoor heater. Sip warm cider and don’t let summer slip away from you.

We love plush throws indoors, too. It adds warmth, just what you want after a walk through crunchy leaves. Some of our favorites are faux fur or alpaca-and-camel-hair — we just found this luxurious number on a buying trip to New York. And it’s arriving just in time for the chillier temps. A cashmere throw is one of life’s lovely extravagances. Drape them on armchairs or the back of a sofa for an instantly updated, cozy feeling.

MOVE THE PARTY INDOORS

When it’s obvious the days of outdoor barbecues are over, invite your friends inside. Decorate the table with seasonal accouterments and new dinnerware — whether cloth napkins, new chargers or fall-hued serving bowls. Put your roasted butternut squash soup in white bowls and, voila, instant autumn in a bowl.

The light shifts in the fall and it’s dark much earlier. Instead of wallowing in darkness, try different sources of lighting. Candles create a warm flickering glow, with the added bonus of infused scents. Lamps on the end table or buffet provide light without a harsh glow. And there are so many fabulous lamps these days that in itself can be a focus. Capture the fading light with carefully positioned mirrors. Dali’s house in Spain had a mirror set just so, allowing the morning light to stream in and wake the slumbering artist naturally. Do the same for the late afternoon light streaming in the windows.

ADD WARMTH TO THE ROOM

Don’t forget the joy of a fireplace. It adds warmth (obviously) but also brings a soft light into the room. More homes have two-sided fireplaces making it a focal point and allowing more people to share in the heat.

An immediate way to add warmth and revamp your room is with new window treatments. Just as I love pulling out my summer linen drapes, I am happy to put up the heavier fall curtains. Instead of a dark space, it’s cozy. Shades can also be changed out according to the season, keeping the warm air in and cooler air out.

When the night seems long and you’re still looking for change, rearrange. It’s surprising how fresh a space can feel when it’s laid out differently. Move pictures from the dining room to the living room, move pillows from one sofa to another and add a few seasonal enhancements.

I love fall, with its cooler nights, crystal sunny days and blazing yellow aspens. I may not be ready for the cold just yet, but I am looking forward to readying my home.

Yvonne Jacobs is the president of Slifer Designs. She’s been passionately creating inspired spaces for 17 years. For more design at altitude, stop by the new pop-up store on Gore Creek Drive in Vail or visit the Edwards showroom.


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