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Seasonal Cleaning

Maintain Fall Decorations

The leftover Halloween candy and unpacking of your favorite sweaters can only mean one thing: ovember is here. And, if you’re like many people, you’ve been researching fun ways to get your home into the holiday spirit.

However, seasonal candles, wreaths for fall and pumpkin decorations can all look a bit dull if they’re not cleaned or cared for properly. Want to make sure your autumnal décor looks great and lasts for a long time? Check out the following helpful tips.

Keep Decorative Candles Clean

While fall candles literally brighten up the room, the dust they collect can quickly take them from decorative to disgusting. Wiping them lightly with a microfiber cloth will get rid of some of the build-up on your candles, but what about the grime that really gets stuck to the wax? You can clean candles with two simple ingredients that you probably have in your medicine cabinet: cotton balls and rubbing alcohol.

Simply dab some rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball and wipe the candle clean. The thicker the dust, the longer it may take to clean the candle. A good rule of thumb is to stop cleaning once you see any color from the candle on the cotton ball.

Make Fall Wreaths Last Longer

Wreaths for fall are hot right now, especially if you’re into DIY projects. Unfortunately, the autumn wind, rain and sun can take a toll on your door decorations. Other than hanging wreaths inside, there’s no way to absolutely ensure these decorative pieces won’t fade. However, you can slow down the process by misting fall wreaths with UV-resistant fabric spray. There are many varieties available, and some protect against moisture in addition to sunlight.

Fraying and unraveling is another problem you may face when decorating with wreaths for fall, especially if you live in a windy area. To keep your wreaths from becoming a stringy mess, you can apply a fabric seam sealer to the ends of ribbons and burlap.

Preserve Gourds and Pumpkin Decorations

Your Halloween jack-o’-lantern may be past its prime, but there are plenty of adorable mini pumpkins and colorful gourds just waiting to adorn your home with a fun harvest vibe. Naturally, these organic decorations are prone to rotting and molding. While you can’t beat Mother Nature when it comes to this process, you can hold her off for several weeks.

Preventing your gourd and pumpkin decorations from going bad starts in the selection process. Choose pumpkins and gourds that are free of blemishes, bruises, mold, soft spots or nicks to ensure you’re taking home the healthiest possible. Additionally, you want to be sure your pumpkins and gourds are secure on the drive home, rather than letting them roll around in your trunk. While they may seem sturdy, pumpkins and gourds are actually delicate and rough rides can damage them.

Plan to preserve your gourds and pumpkins as soon as you get them home. Start by washing off any dirt using warm water and dish soap. Be gentle, so that you don’t damage the skin. Afterwards, soak your gourd and pumpkin decorations in a solution of one part bleach to 10 parts water. The gourds and pumpkins will float, meaning you’ll need to use a spoon to push them under so that every last inch gets coated in the solution. Do this for about 10 minutes.

Finally, remove the gourds and pumpkins from the solution and gently wipe them dry with an old towel or dish rag. Make sure you blot all the liquid from any nooks and crannies so that your gourd and pumpkin decorations don’t rot prematurely.

These tips can help you keep your autumnal décor at its best until it’s time to decorate for winter.

Looking for more ways to get into the spirit of the season? Make your home smell like autumn with these fall fragrance DIYs.