by Tyler Calder

When September 1st rolled around, early adopters made it clear: Fall was here and there was no fighting it. Then, on September 22nd, sweet validation: Pumpkin spice was in the air and sweater weather became calendar-official. Fast forward a month; and love it as we do, there’s no denying that fall is a full-blown in-between season–especially for home decor.

While it’s fun to rotate your wardrobe to match the weather’s every whim, the threads in your home somehow feel a little more permanent and a little less disposable than your collection of plaid scarves from Buffalo Exchange. Here’s how to master the summer-to-winter switch without committing to four seasonally appropriate sets of, well, literally everything.

1. Switch out your pillows for cozy tones and textures.

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There are three things that can change the whole mood of a room – an area rug, curtains, and throw pillows – and only one of them is particularly easy (and affordable!) to switch out. Once you’ve got a headstart with a few pillow inserts of varying sizes (16”x16”, 18”x18”, and 20”x20” are all considered standard), a good rule to follow is neutral, any-season fabrics and colors for half to two-thirds of your cases, and a seasonal touch for the remaining accents. In the case of October, you’ll want to lean into cold-weather vibes with knits, faux-furs, and maybe even the cozy of the season: velvet.

Budget-friendly ideas: This furry pillow cover ($13), this striped velvet pillow cover ($8).

Splurge-worth ideas: Silk & cashmere zigzag pillow ($88, Schoolhouse Electric), textured merino wool pillow ($127, Restoration Hardware).

2. Add strategic layers.

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The mark of a true ‘tween-season: some days can pass for mid-August and others might as well be certified winter. Your saving grace, though, comes in the form of a reliable cotton throw in a pattern and texture that you’ll be confident putting out again in the spring. Think of this as your starter blanket or your cozy with commitment issues. It’ll be there if you get a chill, but this is no time to go full cuffing season yet. A light throw is as versatile as it is purposeful, and you’re guaranteed to get use out of it for the majority of the year.

Ideas: Knitted chenille throw blanket ($30), Night sky slate blanket ($165, Hillery Sproatt)

3. Add in a dual-purpose candle (or seven)

19428661_430539683999645_426614368457719808_n.jpg Photo via @shopcandlefish.

A smart candle shopper knows that smells – like sounds, textures, and cleanliness – are the real tone-setters in any space. The thriftiest wax investors, however, know how to stretch a wick for all it’s worth. That means not settling until your seasonal scents also add an element of decorative flair. Vary candle sizes on your dining table for additional depth or search for gold-flecked exteriors for a tasteful, though not-yet-holiday aesthetic. We’re fans of candles that put in werk (yes, with an e) toward transitioning your home to chillier months.

Ideas: Pumpkin-nutmeg-anise Candlefish candle ($22), French cade & lavender Voluspa candle ($29).

4. Experiment with an Edison bulb.

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An exposed Edison bulb may as well be a modern-day candlestick. It’s warm and there’s a certain romance its look – and like its earlier iteration, it provides much-needed utility to the seasonal decor equation. As days get darker earlier, you’ll be glad you you invested in illuminators that balance fashion and function, en route to giving your home that distinctly autumn cabin-feel.

Ideas: Vintage desk lamp ($22), Schoolhouse Electric Holmes sconce ($119).

5. Design from the outside-in.

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It may seem like a no-brainer but we can’t stress it enough: the simplest way to bring a season indoors starts with flowers, plants, and (in this case) gourds. We’ve been crushing on the selection at Trader Joe’s this year, but most markets are stocked with the season’s provisions – which you can take advantage of at a wallet-friendly rate.

How are you planning to transition your interiors for fall/winter? Let us know what pieces you have your eyes on below in the comments!