[Written by Abby Wilson]
[Image by Abby Wilson]
Autumn: the glorious transition from the warmth of summer to the bitterness of winter. It is a season full of colour: deep reds, burnt oranges, mustard yellows. Sadly, alongside the changing colours comes the changing tones. Despite the occasional seasonal walk through the park or nearby forest, where we can witness, first hand, the magic of autumn, it is colder, breezier, rainier, and often, we would rather spend these darkening days indoors. Personally, with studying and other commitments, I struggle to spend as much time outdoors as I would like. However, I have found a simple solution: bringing my favourite elements of the outside in. This includes colours, scents and even tastes. I’ve listed some of my autumnal favourites below:
In case you didn’t already know, candles have the amazing binary function of spreading heat while diffusing scent. Perfect for a student flat! I prefer to choose candles which have an autumnal smell; this could be red apple, spicy orange, cinnamon or warm vanilla.
- Pine cones
I’ve also decorated my room by scattering pine cones around like showers of glitter. Disclaimer: if you also choose to do this, please wash them first. Moreover, if they haven’t quite opened, there is a super easy and quick method to speed up the process: Preheat your oven to 200°C, line a baking tray with tinfoil, and pop your pine cones in the oven for 20-30 minutes (checking regularly). Not only will the pine cones be fully opened, but the kitchen will smell amazing after!
I purchased a festive autumn print which is now on the wall of my study space and it makes my rented student accommodation feel much homier. I would definitely recommend hanging prints around your room (perhaps with those fairy lights every student owns, you know, the ones with pegs attached?) While the easy option is to buy a professional one from Etsy (I did this and there is no shame in that!), you could get creative yourself and paint/draw/Sharpie your way to an awesome autumn design.
The elusive “white pumpkin” craze has swept Instagram and created a mass epidemic of frenzied desire. Whatever happened to the good old orange pumpkin? My major investment of the year: three fake pumpkins which saves me spending my last tuppence on a pumpkin every October. Nevertheless, whether your pumpkins be orange or white, they make a cute addition to the kitchen table and can be used for recipes after Halloween. A win-win, right?
- Food and drink
At this time of year, I find myself craving cold weather cuisine: soup, stew, hot beverages. Like the kitchen goddess I am, I made maple syrup lattes using latte sachets and maple syrup sauce. Ok, it’s not entirely ground-breaking, but you can make up to eight lattes for the price of one in Starbucks. However, despite just dedicating an entire paragraph to pumpkins, I have never tried a pumpkin spice latte. Does this mean I “haven’t lived”? Opinions welcome.
Anybody else ready to join me in tackling the rest of the semester with pumpkins and pine cones as our allies?
P.S. – if anyone finds a white pumpkin, send it my way.
[A photo of a white card with a design saying “hello autumn” on it, surrounded by small pumpkins.]