Fall lawn decor is evolving from standard store-bought decorations to items with unique twists for trendy and eye-catching looks. One big trend for this fall is skipping plastic decorations and using natural items -- such as pumpkins, green garlands and branches -- for attractive designs that are also eco-friendly.
Shauntina Lilly, public relations planner for Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores, says, "Many appreciate a good garden. They add curb appeal to the home, and kids can even help to jump-start their green thumb." So there is a family togetherness aspect to today's fall lawn and garden decor, with kids joining their parents and grandparents to create new and trendy pieces for any outdoor space. Front terraces, back terraces, walkways and pool areas are now on the radar of do-it-yourselfers of all ages who want to create attractive views from the street, as well as fall-spruced outdoor entertainment areas.
Here are Lilly's top picks for giving classic fall lawn ornaments trendy twists:
"Wreaths are a staple for entryways, and there are techniques to decorate them in a unique way. One option is to use felt or paper flowers instead of the usual faux florals," says Lilly. Other natural items to affix to the new class of fall wreaths include mini succulents, fresh flowers, cut fresh herbs, mini fruits and berry sprigs.
"Another way to switch up wreath styling is to incorporate wood pieces, which are very on trend for fall 2016. The wood adds an unexpected yet heightened rustic effect to the wreath," says Lilly. Think cut wood circles with messages painted or wood-burned into the center circle that can be affixed to the wreath. One trendy design idea is to paint the centers of your cut wood plaques with chalkboard paint so that you can artistically script out your message in chalkboard pen or paint. Your cut wood plaque can bear any monogram initial or saying you'd like, such as "Welcome" or "Hello, Fall."
Or your wreath can be made entirely of cut wood rounds, such as birch circles easily found in the craft store or cut yourself from fallen or cut branches. Hot-glue these small wood circles to a plastic foam wreath form and you'll have a unique and trendy piece for your door, outdoor walls and light posts, or fence posts. "Additional ideas include ribbon wreaths or yarn wreaths. Wreaths are a decor item that can be tailored to any season or holiday," says Lilly.
"Scarecrows are a signifier for the autumn season, as well as Halloween. Instead of simply buying a scarecrow to place in your front yard, add oomph by dressing up your scarecrow with sports team apparel (or) superhero costumes, or craft mini scarecrows using hay bales," says Lilly.
"Illumination can take things from boring to breathtaking. This is a great way to achieve a 'wow' effect in a simple way," says Lilly, who suggests using ball jars and LED lighting to create mini lanterns leading the way along a walkway. "Lanterns are a top trend for fall decor and look great filled with small pumpkins, pine cones and flameless candles inside for a nice spark." Lanterns can also be filled with florals that overflow out the sides for a fresh look, and the addition of mini LEDs make this look pop. String lights and rice lights -- tiny lights on wire -- added to wreaths, pumpkins and florals provide perfect illumination in today's trendy small lights style.
"This fall, white pumpkins are a huge trend," says Lilly, who says you can find faux pumpkins in finished options. Or you can paint them with chalk paints for a weathered texture. Decorate fresh or faux pumpkins with color contrast, such as a trendy black-and-white paint motif. Decoupaged pumpkins are also on trend, with family photos cut and pasted onto the pumpkin for a fresh way to show off your favorite snapshots. Or style your pumpkin to fit the theme of a fall party on your terrace.
Texture is also a hot trend for fall decor, and pumpkin accenting gets a boost by hot-gluing lace trims in vertical patterns onto your pumpkins for a fresh look.
You can also decorate natural or painted pumpkins with trendy gold foil, studs and bling.
In addition to store-bought garden flags -- whether they be the large ones hung from your house or mini garden flags on metal posts -- you can create custom flags that share your choice of design, monogram or wording. Lilly says that some custom flags allow various parts of them to be moved by the wind.
"For a twist, you can be the talk of the block with an enchanting fairy garden," says Lilly, speaking of carved-out pumpkins or pottery embedded with moss and inserted with mini figurines. "These little landscapes, called fairy gardens, are a great way to shake up the scene of your home -- indoors or out -- and can be created for any season."
You'll find DIY fall lawn accent video tutorials and project instructions free on your craft store's website, as well as on crafting blogs, YouTube channels and Pinterest. And you might also consider signing up for craft classes at your craft store, where a knowledgeable crafting expert can help you fine-tune your crafting skills as you make a one-of-a-kind trendy fall garden accent to add extra autumn beauty to your home.