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I admit that I have a thing for fallen branches and twigs. I’ve placed them in vases, spray-painted them to display ornaments and tucked small ones into bowls of pine cones.

But these ideas are nothing compared with the decorative uses I’ve seen online, in magazines and from florists.

A branch as a curtain rod? Why not?

I’ve seen photographs of branches standing in for headboards or placed near dressers to display necklaces. I’ve also seen a bunch of skinny ones framed on a wall or used to replace the louvers on interior window shutters.

Tall ones can be placed in a floor vase to help visually divide a room. Twiggy ones can be anchored upright in a vase on a table to display decorative birds or photographs.

Dave Whelan, of Floral Explorations on Hertel Avenue, shares my enthusiasm. For starters, you can cut some grapevine branches from your garden or that of a neighbor’s, he said.

“You just swirl them on a wall or over a fireplace or doorway. If you cut them with the leaves on, the leaves dry and it’s pretty cool. They will fall off in time, but for two, three weeks or a month they should be fine. It’s just a fun, wild look. You can even add sunflowers or anything else you like,” he said.

Other twigs and branches work as well – either bare or with some leaves.

“When you’re doing your fall pruning, instead of throwing it out bring it in for a few weeks. Even the leaves curling up and drying out look nice,” said Whelan.

Branches of various styles can make an instant display in a vase on the mantel or table.

“If you want to fancy it up a bit, you can tie them together with some raffia. It comes in all different colors. Put it in a vase or tie up a grouping of them and hang them on your porch post or front door, instead of a wreath,” said Whelan, noting that clipped ornamental grasses and dried hydrangeas also make great interior decor.

Twigs and branches also can be dressed up for the holidays or special occasions.

“Spray paint does wonders. You can use cans of glitter paint. Or you can whitewash them. There are a million and one things you can do. Branches can be fun,” he said.

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As New York Fashion Week ends, Mercedes-Benz of Buffalo Fashion Week is set to begin with the focus on local fall fashion and beauty. The event, back for the fifth year, kicks off Thursday with a photo shoot in Niagara Square. Other highlights listed in a release: the FAME fashion show Thursday night at Waiting Room, 334 Delaware Ave. (tickets are available at www.balesclothing.com or at Urban Threads, 736 Elmwood Ave.); the free Mall Show at Walden Galleria on Sept. 21; the Beauty Expo on Sept. 22 at the Hyatt Regency; the Boutique Show on Sept. 24 at The Mansion on Delaware Avenue; and the Main Runway Event on Sept. 26 at Statler City. To buy tickets or for more information and scheduled events, visit buffalofashionweek.com.

email: smartin@buffnews.com