Fall Decorating with Vintage

Last week I shared the fall decor with vintage in our living room, dining room, and porch and today I’m sharing our family room’s decor.  When I was decorating this space, I not only was thinking about fall, I was thinking about decorating with vintage items that reminded me of fall.  You’ll see a few brand new things in this space including the paint on the wall and you’ll see some vintage items that I’ve never shared.  Keep on reading to see all of my Fall Decorating with Vintage.Fall Decorating with Vintage

I’m sharing my ideas along with a talented group of bloggers for a Embracing Fall Blog Hop.  This tour is organized by my friend Amber from Follow the Yellow Brick Home.  I love Amber’s gorgeous old home and how she decorates it so beautifully with vintage style.  I look forward to seeing Amber’s decor in any season and if you’ve never visited Amber’s blog, I encourage you to do so.

Embracing Fall Home Tour

If you are visiting from My Thrift Store Addiction, welcome!  

Fall Decorating with Vintage

Welcome to our fall family room.  A few weeks ago I painted this room a lighter color (Benjamin Moore Clay Beige) with the hopes of brightening it up a bit.  Our family room is located on the north side of our house and it stays dark in this space no matter the time of day.  The lack of light makes it cozy for relaxing in this space but tricky when trying to photograph it.  Our formal living room is painted the same color and the paint appears much lighter in that room.

I always forget how much work it is to paint a room and was very happy when the job was finished so that I could get on to fun part, decorating for fall.A traditional southern family room is decorated for fall with vintage.

Coffee Table Decor

For fall I switched out the throw pillows on our sofas to mustard yellow pillow covers from IKEA and gray velvet covers that I made.  I started my fall decorating in this room with the coffee table.A traditional southern family room is decorated for fall with vintage.

Every fall I collect seed pods from an Osage Orange tree on city property.  This summer the city cut down the tree that I’ve visited each fall for over 20 years to make way for a traffic circle.  I liked collecting from this particular tree because the seed pods, called by many Horse Apples, were a small size.Coffee table decorated for fall with vintage.

Luckily I knew of another Osage Orange tree and was able to harvest a few seed pods, but not enough to completely fill the bowl.  There were plenty of seed pods on the ground around the tree but all of them had brown spots on them where they were starting to decompose.

I could just barely reach two branches on the tree and I was able to pull them down so that I could pick a few seed pods to use.Coffee table decorated for fall with vintage with a wooden bowl filled with osage orange balls and small pumpkins.

To fill the bowl,  I added some small pumpkins and two deer sheds that Sherman found.  Osage Orange seed pods will eventually turn brown and decompose.  This year I used my “How to Make Pumpkins and Gourds Shine for Display” hack on both the pumpkins and the Osage Orange balls and I’m hoping that the green color will be prolonged.Coffee table decorated for fall with vintage with a wooden bowl filled with osage orange balls and small pumpkins.

For this year’s fall decorations in this room, I wanted a fall feel but wanted to achieve it with decor that isn’t specifically fall related.  

To the right of the wood bowl, I stacked two vintage Lynchburg books that I found at the YMCA’s books sale.  The cover colors are colors of fall and the content is special since it’s where we live.Two Lynchburg, Virginia books, Tales of the Hill City and Lynchburg, A Pictorial History are used in a fall vignette with a dried shelf fungus and a wasp nest.

I could have used a pumpkin or some gourds on top but I wanted to do something different so I used a dried shelf fungus and a wasp nest.

Long ago one of my students brought the shelf fungus in when we were studying them in science class.  I used it for science lessons for years and now I’m decorating with it.  Mr. SP found the wasp nest in the attic space of our boat house when he was lubricating the boat lift and saved it for me knowing that I would like to use it for decor.Two Lynchburg, Virginia books, Tales of the Hill City and Lynchburg, A Pictorial History are used in a fall vignette with a dried shelf fungus and a wasp nest.

Fall wouldn’t be fall if my dad’s squirrel nutcracker wasn’t on display.  Someone in Vinton, VA gave this to him when he was a boy.  I used to love to play with it when I visited my grandmother and was tickled pink when she gave it to me.  The green bowl holds some acorns for Mr. Squirrel to eat.  My grandmother left a note in this bowl explaining that she wove a basket around it in bible school when she was a child.Vintage squirrel nutcracker on a coffee table decorated for fall with vintage.

End Table Decor

We love our family room and this is where we relax every evening.  Mr. SP on the sofa to the left, me on the sofa to the right, and Sherman in the leather chair.

The coffee table and end tables are part of a set of furniture that my parents purchased when they were married in 1968.  My mom still has the matching sofa and two side chairs.A traditional southern family room is decorated for fall with vintage.

After I decorated the coffee table, I decided to look through a gigantic box of postcards that my grandmother collected to see if I could find postcards that reminded me of fall.  One that I found was tobacco themed and I decided to display it since tobacco is harvested in fall.tobacco themed fall vignette

The postcard was sent to my grandmother in 1931.   It reads:

Dear Marg, 

I am having a fine time here in NC but I can’t keep Vinton off my mind.  Tell all of the girls that I know hello for me.

A friend that needs a friend,

“Laughing Lee”

My grandmother wrote in pencil beside “Laughing Lee” Lester Oliver to identify the sender.

Interior of a Southern Loose Leaf Tobacco Warehouse postcard sent from Raleigh, NC in 1931

To display along with the tobacco postcard, I pulled out a 1922 receipt from Lynchburg Tobacco Warehouse that my mom gave to me and I’ve been meaning to frame.Lynchburg Tobacco Warehouse receipt from 1922

Kemper Rodes was my grandmother’s first cousin.  My grandmother’s mother died of Typhoid Fever along with her brother and she and her sisters were sent to live with aunts.  Granny was raised by Phillip and Lillian Rodes.  Kemper was their son.  Along with Kemper’s tobacco receipt, I displayed a letter sent to Lillian in 1917.Interior of a Southern Loose Leaf Tobacco Warehouse postcard sent from Raleigh, NC in 1931 and Lynchburg Tobacco Warehouse receipt from 1922 and a letter postmarked 1917

The glass globe is from the farmhouse where my paternal grandfather was raised in Maryland. Interior of a Southern Loose Leaf Tobacco Warehouse postcard sent from Raleigh, NC in 1931 and Lynchburg Tobacco Warehouse receipt from 1922 and a letter postmarked 1917

The coffee table to the right of the sofa tells the story of our love of visiting Vermont in fall.  I’m actually in Vermont this week for our now annual fall trip.  The Byer’s wheelbarrow was a Vermont purchase that I enjoy using every year.Vermont themed fall vignette

We are hoping to see some brilliant fall color this year on our trip.  Even if we don’t, there’s no better place to enjoy fall than in Vermont.  You can read details of last year’s Vermont trip here and here.Vermont themed fall vignette - Vermont postcard with a Byer's wheelbarrow and a fall candle.

This corner of the room used to be where Mr. SP relaxed in the evening but Sherman has claimed it as his spot.  Cozy corner in a family room decorated for fall

Mr. SP is a Badger and to celebrate his school pride, I had a Wisconsin pennant pillow made for him.  This is an Etsy seller and if your school isn’t shown for sale, contact her as she can probably still make a pillow for you.  That’s what I had to do to get this pillow. Wisconsin Pennant Pillow

Sherman shamelessly begs for treats, so a treat jar is always on this table to oblige when he whines and cries.  For fall I used an antique lamp along with a shade that I’ve had for 20+ years.  The goose gourd was a gift from my mom when she went on a fall New England trip with my aunt and uncle.Antique lamp with a fall themed lamp shade, clay gourd shaped to look like a goose and a clear pumpkin lidded jar filled with Milk Bones for the dog.

Back to my grandmother’s postcard collection.  My search in that box was for postcards with a fall feel to use on this frame made with wood from the schoolhouse that my paternal grandfather attended as a boy.  The schoolhouse is still standing and you can see a picture of it in this post.   

I found five postcards to use to set this mood for this display and for the pie safe top, went with a loose vintage hunting theme.Fall Decor with a Vintage Hunting Theme

My grandfather did hunt but he spent more time foxhunting.  Not the foxhunting done on horseback while wearing hunting attire, he did pickup truck foxhunting where his buddies would all meet, release their hounds, and the guys would socialize and imbibe while listening to the dogs bark.  Granddaddy smoked a pipe and the pipe and tobacco holder were his.  The lantern was also his and I’m sure it lit the way many a night when he did farmwork after dark.Fall Decor with a Vintage Hunting Theme

To go with my hunting theme, I added a pheasant platter along with an Avon bottle goose.Pheasant Platter and an Avon Cologne Bottle Goose

There was an empty spot between the pipe holder and lantern, so I went back to the postcard box to see if I could find one with an animal on it and I found this one with a black bear.  Fall Vignette with an Avon Goose Bottle, vintage pipe and tobacco box, antique lantern, and a vintage bear postcard.

This “I can’t ‘bear’ to leave” postcard was never used.  The back says that is it from Ashville, NC.I Can't "Bear" to Leave vintage postcard

Every fall I create a Vintage Virginia Tech corner in our family room.  You can see more details of the items on display in this post.A traditional southern family room is decorated for fall with vintage.

My dad, aunt, and I all went to Virginia Tech.  The Virginia Tech pennant pillow  that I ordered from the same Etsy shop goes right along with my Vintage Virginia Tech corner.Virginia Tech pennant pillow

Breakfast Room

A fall tradition in our breakfast room is to hang three stained glass leaves on the windows.  I purchased these long before this room existed and used to hang them in our former kitchen’s window.Fall in the Breakfast Room

This 1970’s basket is my mom’s and if I had to guess, I’d say that she bought it at Lightfoot in Williamsburg, VA.  I think of it as “the potato chip basket” because she often lined it with a napkin and served chips in it at a picnic.  I filled it with dried gourds.  I never throw my gourds out, I dry them and then stain them to use over and over again.  I have a giant tote filled with dried gourds that I use every fall.Dried gourds in a 1970's basket

Please pin this post to remember for later.

Ideas for Decorating with Vintage for Fall

Next on the tour is Angelina from Petite House.  Angelina is sharing French Country Fall Home Tour and I can’t wait to read her post.

I hope you enjoy all of the fall ideas shared today on this Embracing Fall Blog Hop.  Click on the links below to visit each blogger participating in today’s tour.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

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  1. Hi Paula
    Love your Fall décor. I too love the “hedge apples”. I live up in Maryland (near Frederick) and my husband usually brings me a bag of them that he has scavenged from a tree on the side of the road. I love the look and the smell of them. I also love all of your vintage postcards. They are so cool, especially with writing on the back. Enjoy your trip to Vermont. We were there in August. I have never been in the Fall but need to add that to our travel list.

    1. Hi, Lynda! Thanks so much for commenting. Vermont in fall is wonderful. We love going there and the only season there that we haven’t experienced is spring. My grandfather is from Middletown, Maryland and the farm that he grew up on is still in operation. Maryland is a beautiful state!


  2. Paula,
    I always love seeing your amazing vintage decor. The pennant pillows are so fun. And those vintage postcards are awesome. I love that you have a receipt for tobacco to go with the postcard that belonged to your grandmother. So much vintage goodness! I hope you’re having a great vacation in Vermont. That’s definitely one place that’s on my bucket list.

  3. Such a beautiful space to snuggle up and relax Paula! I really like the new paint color. It’s pretty. I can’t get over all your tobacco finds. They are amazing! My great grandparents had a tobacco farm and my Mom has the best stories from spending time there. I love everything your family has saved and shared. It’s all fantastic. Hugs, CoCo

  4. Paula I love you home and how you have it decorated for Fall. Sorry about the city taking your favorite tree down. Glad you found one to gather the Horse’s apples again this year. I love the coloring the pumpkins and the apples create on your table. All your rooms are beautiful and Fall ready. Happy Fall!

  5. You have the best stuff! I love hearing about your family and love how your grandmother wrote things down for the next generation. Your postcards have to be my fave but all of your decor is splendid! It’s all memorable and special which makes it perfect. Happy Fall. Always love hopping with you. Pinned

  6. Beautiful fall vintage decor! I love it and I especially enjoy the stories behind each piece.
    The Vermont pictures were great, too!

  7. You have the best stuff! I think my favorites have to be the postcards. I love hearing about your family and love that your grandmother wrote things down for the next generation. And I know exactly how you feel about certain rooms on the north side of your home. I have one or two of those. I can never get a good photo. :/ Enjoy your lovely fall decor! Pinned

  8. Paula, you have so many incredible and interesting things in your decor but that little squirrel nut cracker takes the cake! It reminds me of my grandfather and all the nut cracker contraptions he used to come up with for his pecans. So fun!!

  9. Paula, I think I want to live in your house. It is always a treat to see and you are a treasure for sharing with us. I like that you decorate with meaning and never look cluttered but loved.

  10. You have added so many nice little reminders of fall to your home, that make it more cozy. You really did get those pumpkins shiny! The tiny wheelbarrow is just adorable. But, the very best thing about your fall accents is all of the treasured memories that go along with them. Except for a pair of turkey salt and pepper shakers, I don’t have a lot of treasures like that. Enjoy and happy fall!

  11. I love how so much of your decor tells a story. Those pods are quite amazing, and that nutcracker is adorable, Paula! Hugs!

  12. this is such a wonderful, comfortable room Paula, love all your amazing vintage keepsakes and the pillows are so fun! It’s such a shame your tree was removed for traffic flow. I used to grab a few at the entrance to our subdivision at the last house, and now I’m realizing that I didn’t get to do that this year. I think they make a great Fall accent! Happy Hopping!

  13. You have the most amazing collections, Paula. Those letters and postcards are so special and I love reading all the stories behind your treasures. Love how you decorated the room and love seeing that cute squirrel!

  14. Paula, your family room is beautiful and has such a warm feel. I enjoyed seeing all the little Fall-ish items you decorated it with. The one thing I really, really love, though, is the pair of gorgeous brown pottery lamps on either end of the one couce. They are so beautiful. May I ask where you found them?

    You’ve decorated a very cozy room full of interesting artifacts. Well done!

    1. Thank you for your kind comment, Naomi. My mom and dad bought those lamps in 1968 in Warrenton, VA. They’ve been in constant use ever since!


  15. Hi Paula,
    I’m sorry about the tree! I’m not familiar with that kind, but what neat seed pods those are! Your vintage decor has inspired me to put out what I think is a vintage Mt. Vernon guidebook for some of my Fourth of July decor next year. And for Fall I have included a little pocket Vermont Maple Cookbook (which is probably not vintage, but I hadn’t thought of it as decor until I see what you and others are doing!)

    Liberty @ B4andAfters.com

  16. Paula I am going to start sounding like a broken record (hey that’s a phrase that shows my age!) when I say each time I come to your blog how much I enjoy your heartfelt posts and all the stories behind your vintage treasures. I am starting to feel “at home” when visiting your home as I recognize some of your wonderful keepsakes and I am enamored by the surprising new ones you share.

    I am loving the new lighter color in your family room Our living room is extremely dark so I had to paint it the creamy white we have now after trying a historic persimmon color that really was pretty. It just was like a dungeon all the time but the lighter walls made a world of difference.

    Here in KY we call those hedge apples. True story, Years ago I was driving down the road when one fell out of a tree and hit our windshield and shattered it! You would think I would hate them now but I don’t, I love the unique look and color. I love how you used them and the other unexpected natural treasures as fall decor.

    Thank you so much for embracing fall with us!

  17. Oh my goodness, Paula! Your post is packed with so many vintage goodies once again. I have to admit, I had NO idea the pumpkins and seed pods in your bowl were real! I need to get that hack for shining pumpkins. I also had no idea there were seed pods that looked like that. Most of all, I always devour your antique postcards and other vintage items passed down from your family. I have never seen a collection like yours.

  18. Paula, I always look forward to seeing your home with all your wonderful vintage items and the stories that go with them. That’s what makes a house a home and yours is so cozy feeling for the fall!

  19. Hi Paula! I love the new wall color in the family room – it really brightens it up! And I always like to see your vintage and heirloom treasures and the stories that go with them – it makes the room that much more warm and cozy. So happy to be on tour with you!

  20. You have so many unique treasure! Makes them even more special when they have a family connection. I love your mini pumpkins mixed with the pods! Happy Fall,

  21. Hi Paula!

    I love the wall color in your living room, its so pretty. I really enjoy visiting your blog and seeing all of your family treasures and learning about the stories behind each one. Its very interesting and each piece is so special!

  22. Reading about how you have come to find/receive your home decor is always so interesting. Love those green pods and shiny pumpkins. I’m happy to be featuring you at Tuesday Turn About this week, sweet friend!

  23. Paula,
    Remembering family members by using treasured keepsakes from them makes our homes so much more meaningful. Thank you for all the wonderful stories connected to your Fall decor. No better way to embrace fall.


  24. Paula, thank you for Shari
    G all the wonderful history of your family. It makes all your fall decorations so much more meaningful. Growing up around horses and out I’m the north Texas pastures, I’m very familiar with horse apples. The color is a perfect counterpoint for fall pumpkins. Love all your animal pieces. I’ve never been to Vermont but I can just imagine how awesome the fall foliage is. Enjoy your fall. Hugs.

  25. I love, love all your vintage touches! It is so special that you have that amazing squirrel nutcracker. I love how you decorated the top of your pie safe and the postcards! Your college pennant pillows are so fun! Of course I love the Badger one!!

  26. Everything is so pretty and cozy! Loving the new paint color. It’s amazing what paint can do to a space. I’ve really had the painting bug lately. That osage orange is the main and only ingredient in a facial oil that I use. How cool is that! They look fabulous for fall!

  27. I love your fall décor. The center piece with pumpkins and hedge apples is my favorite. The hedge apples remind me of my childhood. We had them everywhere. Thanks for sharing!

  28. I always look forward to your seasonal decor posts, Paula. I grab a coffee and sit back to enjoy. It’s like a virtual trip to a historical museum that I just love. You are being featured this weekend at the Snickerdoodle party. Enjoy your time in Vermont!

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