These past few days I’ve felt autumn in the air… the scent of the earth, the liquid hazy light, the colour of the hydrangea in the garden…. it’s coming, the golden hush.
I love Autumn. It’s mellow musty smell, the abundance of harvests, orange pumpkins, kids scurrying for fallen conkers. The colour of the hedgerows, slowly, slowly turning through all the shades of rust until they fall, lying there waiting to be kicked and thrown by laughing kids.
But before we dive head first into bonfires and crumbles, I like to have a house makeover. Like an Autumn version of a Spring clean. I seem to ‘forget’ to do house cleaning during summer, I mean come on! Who wants to clean when there is summer picnics or days at the beach to entice you away.
If you are anything like me then your house will have filled with items left over from adventures or holidays this summer. Misplaced and needing to be returned to their homes.
Here are a few tips to help with the Summer to Autumn house transition…
- de-clutter: Oh god, not this one again! But seriously letting go of STUFF makes you feel so much better. Monday, we returned home from holiday and got stuck in. Our landing, understairs area over the past few years had become a place where STUFF went to die. I mean really die. Never to be used or looked at again. So we chucked it. Every last piece was either donated to charity or sent to the tip. My god it felt good. I didn’t need to keep any of it. Work books from 10 years ago, half completed craft projects, a gazillion bags for life etc etc. GONE! I now fully intend to live like this, with less, with only things that matter. As William Morris famously said – “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”. Amen!
- Clean blankets and throws: Pull out all your cosy blankets and throws and wash them on a wool wash. Hang them out on a sunny day to let the sun kill off any bugs or bacteria that may have accumulated over the summer.
- A fresh lick of paint: Spending more time inside, I begin to notice areas that look tired. Luckily most of our house is painted in the same shade of white, so I can easily nip round with a roller.
- Dry clean your winter coat: I have a couple of vintage faux fur coats that need a deep clean. So I’m taking them to the dry cleaners in preparation for the cold. Nothing like a big coat on a cold day, and one that doesn’t smell of dust.
- Go house plant shopping: During the colder months we spend most of our time indoors. House plants are a great way to bring a touch of the outside in, but also they help to purify the air. If you aren’t particularly green fingered, then go for a cacti of some sort.
- Deep clean: A deep vacuum, the floors, rugs and sofa. Wiping down of the surfaces, skirting boards and windows using a natural solution of vinegar and water. I prefer to use this instead of highly perfumed shop bought cleaning products.
- Stock up on winter essentials: Stock up on candles. I love the natural beeswax kind like these from Toast or for a scented version why not try these from Hobo Soy Candles.
- Get your chimney swept: We have a log burner in our lounge, and swore to the log burner installation guy that we would have our chimney swept each year. We haven’t, and we’ve have had it installed for five years now. Time to do it!
- Become a log hoarder: Order in your logs, have them delivered and store in a dry place. We use our dining room fireplace to store them, not only useful for grabbing to restock the log burner, but they are decorative too.
- Dust down your recipe books: look for winter warming recipes, good stews, soups, one pot dishes or tray bakes. Have a look at my winter warming pin board for inspiration.
I hope that these few tips will make the transition from a summer of outside and fun, to an Autumn of cosy and warmth.
If you have any other tips, please leave me a comment below, I’d love to hear.