Photo courtesy of C&F Home and Gallerie II

Gift Shop Plus Spring 2024
Harvest & Halloween: 2024 décor exudes warmth, whimsy By Abby McGarry

Primitives by Kathy.
Ghosts Salt and Pepper Shakers. Primitives by Kathy.

Each year as the temperatures start to cool, homeowners begin decorating for fall — first in a cozy way to usher in the season, then by adding plenty of whimsy as Oct. 31 approaches.

Although there is always a place for traditional colors and icons — think orange and black for Halloween with pumpkins, leaves and acorns for fall — home décor and gift companies are pushing the envelope, driven by customers’ unique tastes and styles.

“Customers are seeking to keep the classic and nostalgic representations of the season, accented with updated textures for fall and a whimsical flair for Halloween,” said Kacie Carswell, marketing manager at burton + BURTON.

TEXTURE

A trend seen in both fall and Halloween décor is the layering of products with different textures throughout a space. Think of not only a comfy couch piled high with a mix of pillows and blankets, but also these same fabrics transferred throughout the home.

burton + BURTON.
Small Harvest Flocked Pumpkins. burton + BURTON.

“It’s texture on texture on texture; you can’t go wrong, nothing has to match, everything just is personal and what you want,” said Veronica Bell, creative director at Primitives by Kathy. “We are introducing velvet into wall décor and then you have your different types of wood, you have your different types of metal, and you’re bringing it all together into one space.”

Some of C&F Enterprises hottest items at the winter markets this year were its shaped sherpa pillows, according to Colleen Hall, vice president of marketing for the company’s five brands, including C&F Home and Gallerie II.

“Our sherpa, shaped ghost pillow was a hot item and then our plain, bat-shaped ones. We’ve been doing them in multiple seasons, but really the Halloween ones were a big hit this year,” Hall said. “It’s easy to add a fuzzy white ghost pillow to your couch or chair and pair it with a cozy white fall throw. Texture in all formats will be important.”

ICONOGRAPHY

Bats and ghosts are not the only icons leaving their mark on Halloween.

burton + BURTON.
Plush Halloween Characters. burton + BURTON.

“Popular icons such as skulls, skeletons, even snakes, are going to be trending a lot this year,” Bell said. “We’re definitely getting into that apothecary, just kind of oddity scene. That’s where the bugs and the snakes and everything come into play.”

One of Primitives by Kathy’s most popular show items this season was its apothecary jar sitters with vintage art and old medicinal cocktail recipes.

As for skulls and skeletons, Hall has seen their prevalence for Halloween and Day of the Dead, with many customers leaving them out longer than just the holiday season.

“We’ll continue to see different interpretations of skulls,” Hall said. “In regard to Halloween, whimsical will remain important for those generations who are moving from parenthood into grandparenthood.

“Gen X and some millennial Halloween lovers will swear to you that Halloween should be spooky, not cute, and they are going to desire the more gothic meets celestial and mythical style.”

Primitives by Kathy.
Potion Bottles Chunky Sitter. Primitives by Kathy.

This aesthetic includes tarot illustrations, classic astronomy charts and skulls, all with earth and grounding elements to them, Hall added.

COLORWAYS

One of the greatest illustrations of fall seasonal décor and Halloween-specific items is their color palettes, with some similarities and some differences
between the two.

burton + BURTON.
Braided Pumpkin Assortment. burton + BURTON.

“Fall’s color palette remains traditional, with a focus on earth tones in creams, browns and sage,” Carswell said. Pastels had a big moment in 2023, but Hall predicts these will evolve in the coming months and years.

“The pastels are going to change, and they’re going to be soft hues, not necessarily pastel, but take an earth tone and do it soft. I think some of that is the whole plant culture making its way in,” she said. “Think soft, silvery greens and blues versus a pastel mint green for the future.

Classics such as orange and black will always resonate for Halloween. Rusts and deep emerald greens are making their way back into harvest and Halloween alike.”

burton + BURTON.
Wooden Fall Shelf Sitters. burton + BURTON.

For fall, Bell echoed the popularity of earth tones, particularly a lot of brown. But for Halloween, she sees a different colorway.

“Halloween has been just loud, loud and proud,” she said. “We’re seeing everything from neon colors to people experimenting with pinks and maroon instead of just your traditional black and orange.”

No matter the colors, there’s no doubt that Halloween continues to evolve as a holiday that gift shops can’t overlook.

“Halloween we’ve seen grow so much and become a major holiday in the past few years,” Hall said. “I just think it’s going to continue to grow.”

Abby McGarry

Abby McGarry is the former editorial director of the Retail Group, including Gift Shop Plus, Stationery Trends and Lawn & Garden Retailer.




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