Here’s What To Do With Your Mini Pumpkins From Halloween

Here’s What To Do With Your Mini Pumpkins From Halloween

Once Halloween is officially over, you’re probably left with a handful of spooky decor and pumpkins from your front porch. While the plastic bats and fake blood can be put away for safekeeping until next season, there may be more use for your mini pumpkins. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and there’s an easy, simple way to transition your decor without even going to the store.

In a recent house tour of his small cottage in East Texas, Samuel Melton showed off his unique and charming design style. He considers his style “Deconstructed Southern modern” with inspiration from folk art and well-worn finds from his journeys. All around his home, you’ll find a personally curated collection of art and knick-knacks that tell a different story from room to room. His sunroom, which doubles as a dining space, has a cool, subtle seasonal decor idea and it’s sitting right on the table.

While reading through Melton’s house tour, I couldn’t help but notice the vase on the table. Typically, a vase in a spot like this would just be filled with a bit of water and some seasonal florals. Instead of flowers, Melton used some simple branches. This gives the table a more warm and welcoming vibe that’s really easy (and free) to replicate. What I really like, though, is the fact that the vase also has mini pumpkins and an apple floating inside!

When you think fall, you probably think about things like pumpkin spice and apple pie. If you’ve already got them laying around your house, then you should really consider plopping in a vase to get extra use out of them. This same little trick translates to other seasons, too. In the spring, you can use lemons and in the summer, try oranges! Either way, this is a fun little centerpiece or shelf decor and it’s practically free. You can thank me, (and Sam Melton) later!

Savannah West

Home Assistant Editor

Savannah is a master binge-watcher and home cook. When she’s not testing new recipes or re-watching Gossip Girl, you can find her on Facetime with her grandma. Savannah is a news producer turned lifestyle blogger and professional homebody. She has a bachelors in journalism from Clark Atlanta University, a certification in Digital Storytelling and is earning her Master’s degree from Harvard University. Savannah believes every day is a good day and there’s nothing good food can’t fix.

Follow Savannah
A 570-Square-Foot New Orleans Shotgun Spookily Captures the Halloween Spirit

A 570-Square-Foot New Orleans Shotgun Spookily Captures the Halloween Spirit

We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission.

Name: Kimberly Nesmith and her canine child, Jude
Location: Algiers Point — New Orleans, Louisiana
Size: 570 square feet
Type of Home: Half shotgun house apartment
Years Lived In: 2.5 years, renting

Kimberly Nesmith is a technical writer, but she’s also well known for her photography and art, which often features gorgeous New Orleans architecture. And ever since 2018 she’s lived in this cute rental apartment located in a truly charming part of New Orleans that isn’t super well-known: Algiers Point. “I really love the neighborhood, especially in the fall. Algiers Point is truly New Orleans’ best kept secret to me,” Kimberly explains. “I was always a Lower Garden District girl and still love it, but nothing beats AP. It’s like quaint, coastal village meets Bywater architecture meets Garden district nature. The neighborhood itself is full of great people and a true sense of community with seasonal events and always being there to help each other.”

For Halloween lovers, this time of year is a favorite, but it’s even more so for New Orleans residents. “Halloween night is so unique. After growing up in rural Alabama, it was the first time I ever saw hordes of children in the streets trick-or-treating,” says Kimberly. “It was like ‘Hocus Pocus’ came to life for me. Not to mention, the adults do their own ‘trick-or-treating’ with beverages and Jello shots on some porches. Needless to say, my own love of autumn and Halloween drew me into this place, but it’s also a perfect location by the river, just across from the bustling French Quarter.”

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Mystical bohemian meets goth meets tropical meets vintage? I really do just buy what I like. I do notice that I tend to favor jewel tones and unique textures. I love antiques. Furniture that has a story/history and is passed down through the generations is beautiful to me. Feels spiritual.

Inspiration: I think the older I get, I want my home to resemble a cozy cottage in the woods with natural elements and vintage, timeless pieces. I obviously use Instagram to look at photos that meets my aesthetic for decor ideas. It’s also hard not to be inspired walking around New Orleans—this city definitely speaks to my love of old, historic homes AND furniture. Everything is unique, even the paint on the houses. There’s nowhere else like it. I’m always finding a new color combination to use.

Favorite Element: I initially want to say the porch, but it’s really the open layout of the apartment. I have pocket doors that divide the living from the kitchen, but with those open and the front door open in fall/spring, it’s like one huge, amazing room. The porch itself adds a lot of square footage and openness to my living room if I have the front door open. I can also open the full-length window for more porch access. My dog loves it as well.

Biggest Challenge: The biggest challenge has definitely been the size. It’s the smallest apartment I’ve ever lived in—I went from a 1,600-square-foot place to just under 600 square feet. I wanted to downsize, though, and not have the upkeep/cleaning for just one person. I’ve tried to utilize wall space and creative storage ideas.

Proudest DIY: Probably the wall in my kitchen beside the fridge. I took a vertical shelving unit and mounted it on the wall horizontally after painting it a turquoise color. I use it to store coffee mugs, glasses, etc. I used a vintage dresser from the 1950s below it to be more counter space for a coffee station and the microwave. The drawers add wonderful storage. I also like the large branch I added as a decor piece above my pocket doors. I recently found that beautiful branch on my street after a storm. It had been there for a few weeks without anyone cleaning it up, so I snatched it. I hung dried flowers from it. For this season, I thought the autumn garland would be great. I’ll add some special garland for Christmas, as well.

What percentage of your everyday home decor gets switched out for the holidays? Probably 40 percent? Depends on the holiday. I love decorating for the holidays, and we practically have a new one each month in New Orleans. A lot of my Halloween decor stays up year round, though, because it’s just my aesthetic… so I end up just adding things that are blatantly Halloween-y, like jack-o-lanterns, pumpkins, costume-y items, etc. I probably add more in for Christmas but I think my Halloween decor ends up looking extravagant just because there’s so much I have in my living room that looks like Halloween already!

How long have you been decorating your home for Halloween? Ever since I lived on my own after college… so about 11 years now.

How long does it take to decorate? Usually I can tackle it in a day, but it takes more time when I decide to buy and add more pieces (every year…) or if I go all out like I did this year with the porch. That takes another day and some help.

What’s this year’s Halloween decor theme or inspiration? I never really pick a particular theme, but my neighbor and I noticed that with our witch hats hanging from the roof that we got some “Practical Magic” vibes. My altar area also stays like that year ‘round, so I think the witch theme fits.

How much did you spend on Halloween decor this year? I’d say not more than $175. That was mostly new things like the teapot, a few new pumpkins, figurines, rugs, etc. I already have a good bit to work with. All of my decorations tend to come from HomeGoods, TJMaxx, Target, Amazon, At Home, Spirit Halloween, or random places throughout the years. I did buy a lot of larger candles this year from Warm Glow Candle Company. Their scents are the absolute best, and the candles last forever; I have one over a year old that I burn all the time that’s still going!

Overall, I tried to do Halloween on a budget this year. I know we’re all feeling the wallet shrink with Covid. Of all places, Dollar Tree was my secret this year. Rather than spend $20 on a fall leaf garland from a home decor store, I’d buy four strands of the thinner/cheaper fall leaves at Dollar Tree and twist them together. I’d have a full garland for only $4. There are tricks like that you can use to make the lower quality stuff look higher end, fuller, whatever the case, for a whole lot cheaper. That way you can spend your money on a few nicer items!

Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? I know it sounds typical, but truly buy what you love, and I don’t think you have to worry about whether or not an item “goes” with what you already have. You’ll see that you likely have an innate sense of style built in… you’ll notice a theme. And try to be creative. A lot of times you can recreate a look for a lot less if you use tools like the internet and your imagination.

This house tour’s responses were edited for length and clarity.

Jacqueline Marque

Contributor

Jacqueline is a commercial and editorial photographer based in her beloved hometown of New Orleans. She spent 16 years working as a newspaper photojournalist in Newport, RI, before returning home. When she isn’t taking photos of her spirited 9-year-old, she’s busy beading her costume for next Mardi Gras.

Follow Jacqueline
Zillow Has a Virtual Tour of a Haunted House — and It’s as Chilling as You’d Expect

Zillow Has a Virtual Tour of a Haunted House — and It’s as Chilling as You’d Expect

Arielle Tschinkel

Contributor

Arielle Tschinkel is a freelance pop culture and lifestyle writer whose work has appeared on Shape.com, WomansWorld.com, FirstforWomen.com, Insider, HelloGiggles, and more. She loves all things Disney and is making her way to every park around the world, and is a die-hard Britney Spears fan for life. She’s also obsessed with her Bernedoodle, Bruce Wayne.

Follow Arielle
Audible and Waze Have Teamed Up For This Halloween-Themed Road Trip Playlist

Audible and Waze Have Teamed Up For This Halloween-Themed Road Trip Playlist

Arielle Tschinkel

Contributor

Arielle Tschinkel is a freelance pop culture and lifestyle writer whose work has appeared on Shape.com, WomansWorld.com, FirstforWomen.com, Insider, HelloGiggles, and more. She loves all things Disney and is making her way to every park around the world, and is a die-hard Britney Spears fan for life. She’s also obsessed with her Bernedoodle, Bruce Wayne.

Follow Arielle
This Halloween-Ready Home Has an Incredible DIY Headless Horseman Mural

This Halloween-Ready Home Has an Incredible DIY Headless Horseman Mural

We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission.

Name: Laura Lee and my 8-year-old terrier poodle mix (“toodle”), Toby
Location: Houston, Texas
Type of home: Townhouse
Size: 2400 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years, renting

As a huge fan of Halloween and spooky season, I always try to feature Halloween house tours, where other holiday lovers share how they celebrate using home decor during the season (and sometimes year round!). This year, Vincent Maddox, who is Halloween Herbivore on Instagram, gave a tour of his haunting Oakland rental; Lisa Lytle-Abridello showed off her Moonlit Manor; and Rachel Edmonds showed off her dark home, which, while not specifically Halloween-themed, definitely still captures the spirit of the season.

Below, last year’s house call of Halloween enthusiast Laura Lee‘s Houston home has been updated with some fresh photos of her home decor this year. Along with decorating her own home with Halloween decor, Laura also makes spooky art under the name Halloween Hill Studio, and sells her work on Etsy, Society6, and more.

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: I’m an artist with a background as a museum curator and an art advisor, so my home is filled with art—my art, friends’ art, thrift store art, etc. It’s important to me to create an atmosphere that’s creative, cozy, and lived-in, yet filled with antiques and unique pieces that I love or that mean something to me. With Halloween decorating, I always want to convey a feeling of atmosphere, whether that is dark and enchanting (like my Halloween office you toured before), or rustic and autumnal like this year’s living room; the space should feel cozy and be a place you love to exist in.

As we’ve all discovered to some degree living through the insanity of 2020, this year has been a lot about inner reflection and growth and for me personally, being more true to myself as a decorator. I love Halloween, and I love weird stuff. This year I decided to hand paint an original headless horseman mural in my dining room. I used acrylic paint, and it took me about 10 days start to finish. But I love it! And every time I see it I smile. And that’s how our houses should be even if they’re weird or what what we like is weird. Not everyone will want a headless horseman galloping across their dining room walls, but for me it’s perfect. Bring on the weird—and make it beautiful at the same time.

I definitely identify as an artist and I love unusual, unique pieces. I like to combine them in unexpected ways. I inherited a lot of nice antiques from my grandparents, and it’s fun to combine those with bits of modern art and crazy patterns. I love playing with texture and pattern even if it looks bonkers. I say if you like it, do it! Even if other people don’t “get” it. The only one who has to “get it” is you.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Boho goth chic

What is your favorite room and why? This year it’s probably my living room. I strung faux fall leaves on jute twine and suspended them from the ceiling with thumb tacks—and it has such a cool autumn vibe. This worked so well with my office last year, I decided to do it again but cover the whole living room ceiling. You really feel like you’re lounging under a heavenly fall canopy. Living in Houston, we don’t have seasons, so creating a sense of autumn inside my home is so important. It needs to feel like Halloween, and the hanging leaves combined with the woodcut fabric really creates the perfect backdrop for my Halloween decor. My second favorite room is my dining room, cause I just love the mural.

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? The last Halloween piece I bought for my home, is the large mechanical Ferris wheel from Target. It was so cool, it had to join the collection.

Any advice for creating a home you love? Go for whatever crazy idea you have, and don’t talk yourself out of it. Even if it’s a lot of work and even if you don’t know if you’ll like it. Just try it, cause you may just love it. I almost didn’t try painting my mural, but I’m so glad I did it because I love it. And now I want to paint more murals—you won’t know if you don’t try.

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.