Looking for creative and unique ways to decorate for fall? Here’s a post full of creative ideas on how to decorate a fall hutch three different ways.


If I ever won an academy award, I’d thank this hutch.

It’s been with me through four houses, the birth of four children, the discovery of Pinterest and seven different shades of red lipstick.  I discovered it years ago in the back of a garage covered with tools and dripping paint and random bits of train track.

Good thing I speak abandoned hutch.

I thought it might be fun to decorate it (almost) four different ways with a little step by step on how I falled it up.

I’ll wait for you to grab refreshment.


Here’s how to decorate a fall hutch three ways.

fall-leaves how to decorate a fall hutch

Remember that scene in Legally Blonde with the stop, drop and snap?

Decorating a hutch is a lot like that.

It’s the snap, drop and decorate.

There are basic principles with hutch decorating that are easy to follow and when you’re done, you’ll have a perfectly decorated fall hutch…

…or a date with the UPS man.

Take your pick.

colorful-fall-hutch-kitchen how to decorate a fall hutch

1. Start with one basic element

When learning how to decorate a fall hutch—start with one shining star. I started with this colorful plate in the center of the display.

I bought it a while back at Target because I love the colors.

It was the jumping off point for hutch number one.  I pulled out the blues and reds from the plate and everything else fell into place.

branches-and-apples how to decorate a fall hutch

colorful-fall-hutch how to decorate a fall hutch



2.  Shop the house

You know when you go to the grocery store and you see the crackers shaped like stars with the cutest containers of dip next to them where the coffee display was last week and you think you yourself that you’ve never noticed them before and that you have to buy them because everyone needs star crackers?

The thing is, those crackers were there all along.  The store just moved them where you could see them.

That’s a lot like shopping the house.  These blue plates were stacked up in my living room with an acorn on top of them.  No one visiting my house probably ever saw them.

But after I moved them to aisle 8?

You couldn’t help but notice them when you pushed your cart by.


3.  Layer

You want to start with the display in the back.

That’s where the party happens.

Add a back layer to your shelves.  You could choose picture frames or platters or cutting boards or a row of white plates like this.

Then add a second layer in front.  You could choose vases or pumpkins or pedestals or cloches or milk glass or books or dishes.

You could even add a third layer with a wreath or artwork hung on the outside of the shelves of the hutch.

All those layers give the hutch a depth that makes it feel a little more finished.





4.  Groups of three

I see you nodding.  You get it.  You understand.  If you have watched HGTV for more than five minutes, you’ve already discovered this principle.

It bears repeating.

There’s something about odd number groupings that just makes the eye happy.  Five works, too.  But it’s so much easier to have three of something than five or seven or nine.

Or 913.


5.  Symmetry

I love symmetry and its best friend, height.

After you’ve chosen your inspiration piece and shopped your house and layered in your pieces and grouped everything in threes, finish it off with a little symmetry on both sides.

In the first hutch, I added metal vases filled with flowers from the yard.  In the second hutch, I didn’t have another lamp, so I tried to even it out with color and a grouping of three on the right side and with this hutch, I’ve added corn stalks.

The tall pieces on each side help to frame the hutch display and make it feel like you are a purposeful decorator.

Like you meant it to look just like this.

Because of course, you did.






And then….just when you are finished.

Just when you’ve used the stop, drop and decorate principles to perfection.

Just when you’ve styled three hutches and you’re ready to pack it up and call it a decorating day….

….a little serendipity comes along.


Like these glittered pumpkins I found tucked away in the bottom of a box in the attic.

I started to decorate a fourth hutch with glitter and sparkle and shine.

But the pumpkin had other ideas.

It decided it was going to throw all the rules and principles and suggestions and ideas out the window and tell the world that sometimes you just have to…

…let it shine. 🙂

PS  Which hutch is your favorite?

Help me choose the best one for the magazine photo session this week. 🙂

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for jenni jenni

    #3...i love all those neutrals and the textures of fall...i got a little goosebumply when i saw it. and i think those glitter pumpkins could make themselves right at home there.

  2. Image for Beth Williams Beth Williams

    I guess opposites attract. I can't decide which I like best, hutch #1 or hutch #4, lots of color or serene. But I guess I would go with #4 and enjoy the peacefulness of the fall season.

  3. Image for Patricia Pilarinos Patricia Pilarinos

    Adore the hutch with the white houses and corn stalks. I feel I could transition that easily in December by switching out the corn for some green and a little glitter of course. All beautiful choices.

  4. Image for Beverly Beverly

    I really like all three. So...it just feels wrong to choose a favorite. But, if I must, I choose number three. Please don't tell one and two.

  5. Image for Sue Sue

    Hi KariAnne, I liked the decorating you did with all of the hutches. The neutral hutch is my favorite; I think, though, the first one is so unexpected with the colors that it would brighten anyone's day. Hope both of your girls are doing well.

  6. Image for Diane Walters Diane Walters

    Of course I read every blog you post so of course I think of you every day, and your girls...hope they are doing well...sending more prayers for a speedy recovery. Number 3 made my heart skip a beat.

  7. Image for Liz Liz

    All beautiful but my favorite is #4, what can I say I love sparkle in my home not too much just enough to make it sing!

  8. Image for Ellen Ellen

    I love all of them, but have to vote for the last one. It's perfect Fall and absolutely divine. I must admit though, that those glittered pumpkins do shine- serendipity at its best! Thank-you for this inspired tutorial on decorating a hutch. You are a hutch genius!

  9. Image for Marjie Marjie

    Love all three hutches. My favorite is the third. It just looks comfy cozy. The white houses are very cute. I also like the fancy pumpkins. Keep up the good work!

  10. Image for Yvonne Shafer Yvonne Shafer

    You win the academy award for all the hutches! I like number 2 with the addition of the glitter pumpkins! Like you, they shine!

  11. Image for Sandy Sandy

    Thanks for all the great ideas. Was just looking at my "blah" hutch this morning thinking it needed some pizazz.

  12. Image for Lisa at celebrate creativity Lisa at celebrate creativity

    Karianne, they're all beautiful. Each one has its own personality and I love how you're able to bring that out of each arrangement. I think my favorite is the very first one because I love the coloring added by the apples and other fruits. Plus I love that very long wood tool box you used. Lovely inspiration as always and a pleasure to visit.

  13. Image for Teresa George Teresa George

    Love them all, but #3 is my fave! Those houses! And that pumpkin with the design on it?? I want one!

  14. Image for Rebecca Francis Rebecca Francis

    OH I love the last one! Those little white houses are so pretty. I sent you an email about the pickets. I know you are extremely busy of late. If you have not received the email let me know. Keep it up Rock Star......

  15. Image for Leslie Leslie

    Love them all! I keep loving number three..perhaps because the framework of those cute side vases and the corn stalks on top...but I am sure the magazine will love all three and put them ALL in...

  16. Image for Nancie Nancie

    Number 3 hutch is my favorite. Love the white houses. However, they are all worthy for the magazine photo session. Can't wait for the beautiful choice! xo

  17. Image for Sandra Vigil Sandra Vigil

    I absolutely love them all, no joke! I must say though that the one that "popped out" to me was the neutral (corn stalk) hutch.

  18. Image for Janet Janet

    Great job on each design and thanks for the lessons. I will definitely Italy take them to heart! I like #3 best. Nice balance left to right (without being totally match) and front to back with layers. Have a great week!

  19. Image for Kimberly Kimberly

    ACK!!! Too hard to choose!! They are all gorgeous, but I am going to go with the cornstalk hutch for the win. The photo of the almost fourth hutch with the serendipitous sparkles is magical, though :)

  20. Image for Rhonda S. Rhonda S.

    Looks like you went through all of autumn from beginning to end with the apples for September, the pumpkins for October and now the cornstalks for November. I think I would have to go with #3 but I LOVE them all! Great job my dear!

  21. Image for Gee Gee

    Eeeee!!! A photo shoot. How exciting. Number three ☺ I luv that one. So happy to see that smile. Wishing speedy recovery all the way 'round. Hugs, Gee

  22. Image for Becky Becky

    I think they are all beautiful. I think the colorful plates are pretty but the hutch with the corn stalks speaks to me. Just gorgeous.

  23. Image for Laura Laura

    I love hutch #1, but I really want the date with the UPS man since I've been married to one for 26+ years! 2 weeks from today will be the 30th anniversary of our first date! How is that possible when I'm only 25? ?

  24. Image for Linda Linda

    I like the neutral one the best of the hutch designs. However the smiling Whitney wins hands done! Praying for continued healing!

  25. Image for Deb Deb

    All are stunning! #3 makes my neutral-loving heart sing, but #1 is the hands-down favorite for a photo shoot - its unexpected colors and out-of-ordinary theme are a home run! (Do you want to share what color paint you used on that hutch? Lovely!)

  26. Image for Debbie Debbie

    I love 'em all. Everyone can always use a little extra bling in their life. So happy your daughter is doing well.

  27. Image for Linda Andersen Linda Andersen

    I vote for symmetry. But I love them all because you are the goddess of decorating. So happy to see that big smile on Whitney's face!! Do we know about her vision yet or do we have to wait till she heals? Do you like the we stuff?? Just want you to know that I have bought my mini Thistlewood, except it is a ranch and looks nothing like your house...I am going to get it to look a lot like yours on the inside! Move in on Thursday if I live that long. Ugh. Tell Whitney her aunt Linda said hi and she will be better in no time :) love, Linda

  28. Image for Linda Linda

    My favorite? The last one, the one with the farm flavor of dried corn stalks/husks. Thanks for your daily dose of sunshine! ; )

  29. Image for Pat Pat

    I love the all white/natural hutch with the cute houses! Each one was special and pretty but the light and natural one really caught my eye. I'm happy to see your daughter is smiling and doing well....I hope too, her twin is doing equally well...both are so cute!! Have an awesome day.

  30. Image for Nan, Odessa, DE Nan, Odessa, DE

    #1 for fall! Like the old carpenter tool box and fresh fruit/vegetables. Use the white houses with hints of Christmas. Congrads on the shoot! So happy to see Whitney with her smile! Where can we purchase the white houses?

  31. Image for beverly e beverly e

    Oh, the last one with the little white houses and the paisley pumpkins... beautiful. Happy to hear the twins are healing and happy. Exhale, Mom!

  32. Image for Megan DeMaria Megan DeMaria

    I love them all but my favorite is the last one...soft color pallet, organic pieces really add a Fall feeling! It just looks and feels like Fall to me....the soft and subtle transition to Winter...lovely!

  33. Image for Kelly Kelly

    Well, that settles it...was going to take today "off" and stay in my jammies all day and clean to my heart's content while the kiddos are in school, but no! Now, I'm half way out the door running to find corn stalks! I love everything you do and that you bring so much joy to things that you share with us, your fans! All the hutches are inspirational but I'm so in love with hutch 3 with all those neutrals and texture from the wheat and stalks! I especially love that sweet photo of your beautiful daughter and her big, awesome smile. Wishing you a beautiful day!

  34. Image for Jeanne Jeanne

    So happy to see that beautiful joyous smile... :) ...and love all the decorating tips...the glittering pumpkin shouts prelude to the Main Event. HoHoHo. Yes!

  35. Image for Michelle Michelle

    So happy Whitney is doing so well! I've been wondering and I should have asked but you were back with us so quickly, sounding like your usual cheery red lipstick wearing self, I thought everything was good in the world again and that you would fill us in when you were ready. No excuses, though, I should have asked. It was hard to pick my favorite hutch (as usual, they're all creatively beautiful!) but the last one -- the symmetrical one -- made me pin it. Yes, by golly, it did! I even almost created it's own special board. And then those blingy pumpkins showed up and I fell in love. I just wish we could see the hutch in its entirety decorated with them like the other pictures... :-(

  36. Image for Sherry Morris Sherry Morris

    I love your blog! It almost always makes me smile. I hope that now the girls are on the road to recovery you are smiling too!

  37. Image for Ardith Ardith

    Thrilled to hear about Whitney; thank you for letting us know, Karianne. All of your hutch adornments are lovely. I have to admit a certain affinity for the version with the natural elements. It just calls to me. Yet any one of them are photo opp worthy, so just pick your favorite at the time. Cheers, Ardith

  38. Image for Claudia A. Claudia A.

    Love the hutch, love the Fall decor, but most of all LOVE that smile on that Girly!!! Sail ho! Hi Whitney!, Girly yer smile is Fabulous! Glad that ye and yer sister be on thee mend. (via pirate talk). Thank you Jesus for your healing of these precious girlies!

  39. Image for Terri Terri

    The hutch itself is amazing ... no matter HOW IT IS DRESSED!!! BUT..... I cannot help myself... I absolutely adore the blue & white with the orange / red colors.... It's calling my name!!! lolol....... So glad Miss sweetness is doing well !!!!! Just look at that smile!!!!!

  40. Image for Betty Betty

    Number 3 for me please. Glad your daughter is doing great. I have had a detached retina so I know what it is like, that was eight years ago. Kids are so resilient. Thank you for the joy you bring to my day.

  41. Image for Regina Merrick Regina Merrick

    I'm so glad you posted the pic of Whitney! I was thinking about her this morning. Hope both recovering girls are doing well and enjoying all those hallmark movies!! I especially want to watch "A December Bride," based on the book by Christian author Denise Hunter! Oh yes! The hutches!! I'm not usually one to go along with the crowd, but it's number 3 for me, too. I think it's the cute little houses and the print pumpkin that did it for me! Take care!!

  42. Image for Jolyn Jolyn

    SOOOO thankful to see Whitney's sweet smile! So, I guess she doesn't have to stay face-down, like they used to do with detached retina surgery?? Here's to God-speed healing for both of your sweet girls. Oh, and the hutch is pretty spectacular any way you decorate it!

  43. Image for Julie B Julie B

    Wait... Where's the hutch with all the glitter?! I only see one pic of that! (i guess that's the 'almost') :( If we're going with just the three... the 3rd one caught my eye the most (as it did with most everyone here..proof, I guess!) The textures, layers, and interesting pieces made me stop and look at it for a long time, and made me wish I had most of the pieces (ones I didn't already have ;-)). I love the neutral tones, too. It 'screams' FARMHOUSE! ;-)

  44. Image for Julie Veldman Julie Veldman

    I love the first hutch so very very much!!! You had me with the little blue and white plates, but then you added the surprise of the colorful little diva plates.......be still my heart!!! :)

  45. Image for Emily Emily

    Number 3 looks like you but number 1 is my fav. Thanks for the Whitney update. I sometimes think it would be great to have a blog just for all the prayer partners you would gain.

  46. Image for Joyce Wright Joyce Wright

    My vote is for #1. Love the colors.. also get well wishes to Whitney- love that smile! I'm the crazy nurse you met in Lexington- I encountered you & your sister to work on loving math... hope all is going well for you both &I love keeping up with you all in this blog!! Come back to Lexington soon or over to my houuse if you like. We live in woods - find all kind of things there. Do you know what hedgespples are? About it the size of a softball & is pretty shade of bright green.. they are pretty in a bowl on the table!! Also keep away spiders!!?❤️

  47. Image for sandra magle sandra magle

    SUPER post! you have set a record for me pinning from one post, love all of the looks, and I'm going to run downstairs today and find my apples that are in a bag somewhere...Yes faux apples for the big buffet, grins, and thanks, sandi

  48. Image for Cathie Von Holten Cathie Von Holten

    So happy to see Whitney's beautiful smile, and that everyone else is doing well with help of Hallmark and Sonic. Blessings to you and your family.

  49. Image for Jane Jane

    I like all of them. But how do you get the plates to stand up safely? Does it have ridges? If a hutch doesn't, what is the best thing to use to get plates to stand up? Thanks! And I'm sure your daughter will recover fine!

  50. Image for Marisa Franca@ All Our Way Marisa Franca@ All Our Way

    Whitney and her big smile!! Glad to hear she is doing well. Now, I loved all three of the buffets but the third one captured my heart! There is just something about it that makes it look homey and gorgeous at the same time. xoxo Have a great day.

  51. Image for Sue Ronnfeldt Sue Ronnfeldt

    My fav is the white and rustic with the white houses. Those houses...So unique! Glad to see that pretty smile on that pretty girl! Wonderful to hear both girls are doing well and so is Mama! Take care....all of you!

  52. Image for Carla Hanson Carla Hanson

    Karianne... my favorite is the one with the cornstalks! I think it can go right from Fall into Winter.. no problem!! So enjoy your stories and your blog.

  53. Image for Donnamae Donnamae

    I'm a color girl...so I really like #1. But I love #3.....please don't tell #2! And it is so good to see Whitney smiling! ;)

  54. Image for Alicia Fates Alicia Fates

    I can't find the full photo of the 4th one. but of the other three, I love the third one! But of course I love all of them :) Also, beautiful daughter :)

  55. Image for Jeanie Jeanie

    Hutch #3 with the wheat and the white houses is my fave. So relieved to hear Whitney is doing well. Sending both your girls big hugs from Oklahoma. God is good all the time!

  56. Image for PJ PJ

    Blue and white is my favorite so it has to be #1 for me. I love those touches of color, but they are all beautiful. Karianne, I have two questions: 1. What color and type of paint did you use on your hutch? 2. How did you hang the small plates in the first hutch arrangement? Thank you! It is good to see your Little Thistle's dazzling smile!

  57. Image for Sonya B. Sonya B.

    They are all pretty but I really like the last one best. I am so glad your girls are doing better and I hope your family has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  58. Image for Penny Penny

    Love the last hutch with the corn stalks on top and at the sides. Are the pumpkins stenciled? They're amazing!

  59. Image for Loryl Loryl

    I like them all but 3 is my favorite. Thanks for that sweet smile from Whitney! Nothings like slushies and Halllmark.

  60. Image for Kathy Kathy

    Love them all! You are a decorating genius. My favorite is 1 or 3 and will have to go with number three. The warmth and coziness just makes me want to sigh and linger there. So glad everyone is doing better there. Keep us posted!

  61. Image for NormaJean NormaJean

    I'd be happy with any of the four! They are all beautiful. Speaking of beautiful...I like the last photo of that sweet, smiling blonde! So glad she is home and hopefully healing.

  62. Image for Janet Janet

    Love the hutch with the cornstalks on top but those glittery pumpkins are up on the list too. Can't go wrong with any of them. Thanks for making me laugh with the Legally Blond reference. Actually, thanks for always making me smile.

  63. Image for Beth Beard Beth Beard

    So glad your daughter is doing good! Love that sweet smile. All 4 are gorgeous but if I had to choose, I'd pick the last one.

  64. Image for Stephanie b. Stephanie b.

    Hi! All the hutch displays are beautiful! !! If I need to pick one, it would be the "cornstalk" hutch! I love that it is neutral, but has wonderful texture...amazing job!!!!

  65. Image for Gwen Gwen

    I'm being brutally honest. I thought no.1 was done three ways and I felt like I was doing that find the 25 differences between these pictures and I was going crazy!! I saw the books come. But that was the only change!!! That hutch is fun. With those unexpected two plates. White hutch --I'm being my opinion. Ok? It seemed ok. Fine. But not you anymore. Or something. Maybe it felt like summer lemonade and gorgeous roses that got pushed away for pumpkins?? But I did like it. Last hutch I really felt said AUTUMN!!! If you could just sneak in just one sparkly pumpkin?!! But it seemed monochromatic yet texturally wild!!!! My fave!!

  66. Image for Rebecca Rebecca

    All the hutches are pretty but I like the one with the Orange Pumpkins! So glad your girls are on the mend! I am enjoying all the glorious shades of Fall!

  67. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    Oh good! I was wondering about Miss Whitney! So good to see her smile. As for the hutch, I love number three the most with the first one a close second! All three are beautiful. And those glittery pumpkins? Oh my! Love the sparkle! Have a great week! Hugs, Cecilia

  68. Image for Susan Susan

    "You want to start with the display in the back. That’s where the party happens." I see what you did there! :) These are all jawdropping gawjus, but I think that, perhaps, my fave one is #1, but I wouldn't complain if you wanted to drop any one of them into my home for me! I also have to say...tiny pumpkins under cloches??? Utter and complete genius! This is the type of post that one can come back to repeatedly for decorating tips that will help get you through any season...so, thank you for sharing your wisdom in such a way that even numbskulls like me can understand! ;) And I can't tell you how very happy and relieved I am to hear that your little girls are doing okay! It is such a joy to see Whitney's beautiful smile...that tells us all that everything is A-OK! Sending wishes for continued healing and happiness for both of your sweet mini-Thistles!

  69. Image for Michele Riggsbee Michele Riggsbee

    The last one is my favorite. But most of all, I am so happy to hear that those lovely girls of yours are getting better! Plus seeing Whitney's smile was best of all! Praying for you and your sweet family!

  70. Image for Maggie Nelson Maggie Nelson

    I love number 3 the most, those warm colors are beautiful! I have a question about the #2 where did you get those little pumpkins? I did look everywhere Hobby Lobby, Michael's other crafts local stores and I found big and medium sizes but not that little. I'm glad your daughter is doing fine, I had the same surgery 25 years ago and I'm glad I did. Thank you

  71. Image for Cindy in Oklahoma Cindy in Oklahoma

    The last one is my favorite. Everything about it I love. But I also love those colorful dishes so much....they just exude happiness...

  72. Image for Cate Cate

    Dear KariAnne, Sending love, hugs and prayers from California for you and your mini thistles, Whitney and Westleigh. Those sweet blondies are blessed with the sweetest mama!!! I'm sure you are doing everything in your power and then some to help expedite their healing. ????? Hugs, Cate ??? P.S. My two daughters are now 39 and 42, and I still always carry worry in my back pocket...at the ready! I've always blamed my need for worrying on my sweet mama. I used to tell her that she passed on the "worry-wart- gene"!!!

  73. Image for Carrie Carrie

    Love them all, but to be a little out of the norm, #1 rocks and so does the last one!!! And, what a beautiful smile~ continued prayers of healing and happy days for you all~

  74. Image for Bonnie Bonnie

    I love the 1st hutch the best. I think it's because I'm very partial to blue and white plates. I have several of the same plates that you have hung in my home. Thanks SO much for the update on Whitney. She's such a trooper. I hope your other daughter is doing well after her tonsillectomy. I'll continue to pray for them. Please continue to send updates on the 2 girls.

  75. Image for Debra W Debra W

    Absolutely love hutch # 3. The softer colors and the different textures catch my eye more than the pops of color from the other ones. Great job with all three of them though. Glad to hear that all is well with the girls. :)

  76. Image for Patti Smith Patti Smith

    So great to see Whitney doing well. She's been on my heart and in my prayers. The hutch with white plates and nutural colors And wheat is my favorite.

  77. Image for Lanita Anderson Lanita Anderson

    I love them all - always love seeing how you decorate your fabulous hutch for the different seasons and holidays! I love the neutral one with all of the different textures....not to mention the dishes you added! I also like the one with the great colors and blue & white dishes. I have a "thing" for blue & white dishes!! :) Thanks for sharing all of the different options and ideas! So thankful your daughter came through the surgery well and will pray for her healing/recovery. Blessings .....

  78. Image for Sheryl Sheryl

    All of the hutches were fantastic but I thought the last one with the cornstalks on top was the more unusual! I liked all of the texture that it had and felt like Thanksgiving whereas the others felt more early fall. I love your blog and really wish that I had the gift of gab that you do.

  79. Image for Ann Ann

    I have a hutch, not as special as yours, that I love to decorate. It is an antique English "dresser". It is fun to play with. Hope your baby is better

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