What Types of Fall Festival Decorations Are Commonly Used?

As the leaves begin to turn and the air grows crisp, fall festivals emerge as a beloved tradition, inviting us to celebrate the harvest and the enchanting beauty of autumn. These gatherings are heartwarming and vibrant, brimming with the essence of the season. From the rustic allure of hay bales to the whimsical charm of scarecrows, fall festival decorations play a crucial part in setting the scene for these cherished community events. 

In this article, we’ll explore the top 10 decorations that capture the spirit of autumn, transforming any space into a cozy, festive haven. Whether you’re organizing a local festival or simply looking to bring a touch of fall magic into your home, these decorations offer endless inspiration to celebrate the season in style.

10 Commonly Used Fall Festival Decorations 

Fall festivals are a celebration of the harvest season and the beauty of autumn. They are often marked by a variety of decorations that embody the warmth, colors, and themes of fall. Here are ten commonly used fall festival decorations:

  1. Pumpkins and Gourds: Gourds and pumpkins are the hallmarks of fall decorations, symbolizing harvest and abundance. These versatile vegetables are used in a plethora of ways, from setting a rustic vibe with uncarved pumpkins to creating intricate jack-o’-lanterns. Their varied shapes, sizes, and colors allow for creative displays, either as standalone decorations or combined with other elements like hay and cornstalks. Arranged around entrances, as centerpieces, or even painted with festive designs, they bring the spirit of fall to life.
  1. Hay Bales: Hay bales serve a dual purpose in fall festival decorations, providing rustic charm and practical seating or display surfaces. They embody the essence of the harvest season, creating an authentic farm-inspired atmosphere. Hay bales can be strategically placed to direct foot traffic, used as backdrops for photo opportunities, or stacked to showcase pumpkins, mums, and other fall decor. Their natural, earthy texture complements the vibrant colors of autumn, making them a staple in fall festival settings.
  1. Cornstalks: Cornstalks add height and drama to fall decorations, capturing the essence of the harvest. They are often tied in bundles and placed at strategic points like entrances, corners, or alongside hay bales to create a cohesive farm-themed decor. Cornstalks can also be used to frame doorways or as backdrops for photo areas, providing a tall, textured element that enhances the overall look of the festival. Their natural golden hues blend seamlessly with the autumnal color palette.
  1. Fall Leaves: Scattered or artfully arranged, fall leaves bring the vibrant colors of autumn directly into festival decorations. They can be used in garlands, wreaths, or simply strewn across tables and pathways to create a carpet of red, orange, and yellow. Artificial leaves offer the advantage of longevity, while real leaves add authenticity to the decor. Incorporating fall leaves in various forms captures the essence of the season and adds a natural touch to the festival ambiance.
  1. Mums: Chrysanthemums, with their rich hues and full blooms, are a favorite for adding color and life to fall festivals. Available in shades of yellow, red, orange, and purple, mums can be displayed in pots or incorporated into floral arrangements. They are often used to create vibrant borders, fill out hay bale displays, or serve as table centerpieces. Mums symbolize the beauty of fall and are a durable, colorful way to enhance any festival setting.
  1. Scarecrows: Scarecrows add a whimsical, festive touch to fall decorations, ranging from friendly to spooky designs. They are not only a nod to the agricultural roots of the harvest season but also serve as fun, engaging elements for festival-goers of all ages. Scarecrows can be placed at entry points, integrated into displays, or used as photo props. They offer a creative outlet for expression, with handmade or store-bought options contributing to the festival’s thematic decor.
  1. Autumn Wreaths: Autumn wreaths encapsulate the essence of the season, combining elements like leaves, pine cones, acorns, and berries. Hung on walls and doors or used as centerpieces, they add a warm, inviting touch. Wreaths can be crafted from real or artificial materials, allowing for both longevity and natural beauty. They symbolize the cyclic nature of the seasons and celebrate the bounty and beauty of autumn, making them a cherished part of fall festival decorations.
  1. Burlap and Twine: Burlap and twine bring a rustic, earthy texture to fall festival decor, embodying the simplicity and charm of country living. Used in table runners, banners, or as accents on jars and wreaths, these materials complement the natural elements typical of fall decorations. Their neutral colors provide a versatile backdrop for the vibrant yellows, reds, and oranges of autumn, enhancing the cozy, rustic theme of the festival.
  1. Candles and Lanterns: As the days grow shorter, candles and lanterns offer warmth and light, creating a cozy atmosphere. Placed within carved pumpkins, along pathways, or as part of table settings, they enhance the ambiance with a soft, flickering glow. Lanterns can be hung from posts or trees, while candles in mason jars add a homey touch. This lighting not only serves a practical purpose but also adds a magical element to evening festivities.
  1. Seasonal Signs and Banners: Seasonal signs and banners welcome guests with festive greetings, direct them to various activities, or simply celebrate the spirit of fall. Crafted from wood, chalkboard, or fabric, these elements can feature autumn-themed quotes, harvest motifs, or colorful illustrations. Banners can be strung across entryways or dining areas, while signs placed around the festival guide visitors and add to the decorative theme. They personalize the space and make the festival feel more organized and festive.


How can I make my fall festival decorations eco-friendly?

Making your fall decorations eco-friendly involves using natural, biodegradable, and reusable materials. Opt for decorations like real pumpkins, gourds, hay bales, cornstalks, and fall leaves that can be composted after the event. Incorporate living plants like mums, which can be planted afterward, and use sustainable materials like burlap and twine for accents. LED candles or solar-powered lanterns can provide environmentally friendly lighting options.

What are some unique ways to use pumpkins in fall decorations?

Beyond the traditional carving, pumpkins can be used in unique ways for fall decorations. Consider painting pumpkins with festive or intricate designs, using them as vases for autumnal flower arrangements, or stacking them in creative displays. Mini pumpkins can serve as place card holders for table settings, and larger pumpkins can be hollowed out to serve as containers for serving fall beverages or soups.

How can I ensure my fall festival decorations are safe and secure?

To ensure safety and security with your fall decorations, make sure all installations are stable and secure, especially in areas with high foot traffic. Use weights or anchors for lightweight decorations like scarecrows and banners to prevent them from tipping over or blowing away. When using candles or lanterns, opt for battery-operated lights to minimize fire hazards. Regularly inspect the area for any potential tripping hazards or sharp edges, particularly in children’s activity zones.

Can you suggest ways to incorporate fall festival decorations into evening events?

To infuse a touch of fall festivity into your evening events in Orange County, California, consider incorporating fall decorations with a focus on lighting. String lights can be elegantly wrapped around trees, draped over hay bales, and lining pathways to create a whimsical atmosphere. Incorporate battery-operated candles and LED lights strategically, illuminating pumpkins and lanterns with a warm and inviting glow. Adding fire pits or outdoor heaters not only provides much-needed warmth during the cooler evenings but also contributes to the festive ambiance, encouraging guests to gather, relax, and savor the autumn charm.


Fall festival decorations are a delightful way to celebrate the season’s bounty and beauty, transforming any space into a cozy, autumnal wonderland. From the classic charm of pumpkins and gourds to the warm glow of candles and lanterns, each decoration brings its own unique touch. By embracing these ideas, you can create an enchanting setting that welcomes the fall season with open arms and festive spirit.

Ready to transform your fall festival vision into reality? Our festival party rental services are here to provide you with everything you need to create an enchanting autumn event. With our extensive selection of decorations, furniture, and entertainment options, we’re committed to making your festival a resounding success. Contact us today at Rustic Yard Events to start planning an unforgettable celebration that captures the essence of autumn in every detail.