Home Improvement

8 Curb Appeal Projects to Try for a Festive Thanksgiving

Red door with autumn wreath

Curb appeal – what people see as they approach your house – is an integral part of making a home look festive. If you have family and friends coming over for Thanksgiving, it’s a great time to undertake some curb appeal projects with a holiday theme. Here are eight simple, inexpensive tips to help get you ready to greet the holidays.

[Read: How to Create a Cozy Space at Home to Hibernate This Winter.]

Hang a seasonal wreath. Fall is harvest season, of course. Thanksgiving is a celebration of the bounty of fall. So don’t save wreaths for Christmas only. Plenty of wreaths celebrate, and feature, gourds, wheat sheaves and seasonal foliage. They’re beautiful and decorative, and help welcome people into your home for Thanksgiving.

Decorate the porch. Speaking of gourds, they are great outdoor decor because of the number of autumn colors and shapes they display. Buy a variety of gourds to be arranged for a porch display to celebrate the season. Dried stalks of wheat can also be used on the porch. Place them in colorful woven baskets in hues of brown and dark green, which are also seasonal and can be used year after year.

Place plants or flowers on either side of the door. One of the best welcoming features for a party is displaying plants or flowers on either side of the door. The symmetry framing the door adds an elegant element to your decor, as well. Plants like the dwarf Japanese maple tree are perfect for this time of year, as their leaves are in a blaze of glory during the autumn months. Dwarf firs will provide a dark and aromatic contrast. Flowers that bloom in the fall, like chrysanthemums, offer a wonderful contrast to gourds and dried leaves, and are also available in great autumn colors, such as burnt orange.

Put Japanese lanterns or luminaries along the walkway. One of the things we celebrate for Thanksgiving is warmth and comfort in a season where the outside is growing cold and dark. That’s one of the reasons light is so popular in holiday decor. Don’t confine lights only to Christmas. Place Japanese lanterns or luminaries along your walkways to the house. These are festive, but also serve a practical purpose in lighting the way for your guests as they go home. Orange lights are seasonal. White lights are classic.

String lights along the windows. Lights along the windows will also illuminate your home in an elegant way. Here, too, orange is an excellent choice. White looks lovely with every home and will segue into the winter gift-giving season as well. You can highlight selected features in the front of your home by outlining them with lights. Have a dog house or gazebo? Give them a festive touch. Just make sure to use them in moderation, or you won’t like your energy bill at the end of the month.

Place holiday doormats in front of the door. Winter months often see more precipitation, so help keep the rain and mud outside with doormats for guests to wipe their feet. Don’t let this holiday stone go unturned – invest in holiday-themed doormats. You can go traditional, and feature turkeys or a decorated table. The words “Happy Thanksgiving” will convey welcome. There are also doormats with fall foliage and gourds for a more general autumn theme.

Maintain your lawn. All the holiday decor in the world may fall flat if your lawn looks unhealthy and bedraggled. Your lawn needs to be well-maintained – keep mulching so it retains vibrant health during the fall. Rake leaves and keep the grass mowed and weeded. Edge the lawn around your property and the driveway.


Prepare your garden for fall. Don’t neglect your garden, either. Plants need to be clipped down for the season and not left to fall to ruin. If you have features in the garden, such as warm-weather furniture or a picnic table, be sure to bring them inside. They can look unsightly if left outside in cold weather.


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