Ready to ring in the holiday season at home? Here are 10 holiday decorating ideas, ways to prep for holiday guests, and organizing solutions that will make this time of year SO much easier.
1. Perfect the Guest Bedroom
Guest bedrooms can become a dumping ground, so first thing’s first – clear out all the extra junk and stow it somewhere else. Under the bed is a great hiding place. Guests won’t be looking there and will appreciate the room to move around.
Think about potential overnight annoyances. Is there a streetlight right outside the window? Hang some blackout shades. Is there a draft? Leave an extra blanket at the foot of the bed.
Outfit the bathroom with lots of clean, soft towels. Stow the decorative ones if you don’t want an unwitting guest to use them. Provide some nice smelling hand soap and a basket of travel toiletries, asprin and antacid. Big meals may mean tummy troubles, so give your guests the things they might be afraid to ask you for.
2. Deck Out The Door With a Homemade Wreath
Make this easy (and beautiful) evergreen wreath with trimmings from the closest deciduous tree and floral wire. Hang it on your door to give guests a warm first impression. Find the full tutorial here.
3. Start Your Paperwhite Bulbs
These traditional wintertime flowers are beautiful and easy as pie to grow. Grab a few bulbs from your local garden center and nestle them in some soil or river rocks. When these tall, spindly stems bloom in a few weeks they’ll be the perfect centerpiece for your holiday table.
4. Cozy Up Your Home
Make all the necessary preparations for warm family time by piling on the cozy throw blankets and layering on extra pillows. These pretty flannel pillows were made from thrift store shirts. A stack of firewood next to the fireplace doubles as insurance for toasty toes and a stylish display.
5. Pull Out the Holiday Dishes
If you have seasonal dishes, it’s time to bring them out of the cupboard. Not enough for all of your guests? Mix them in with a basic white set. This caterer’s box of 12 dishes from Pottery Barn is a lifesaver for surprise dinner guests.
6. Create a Gift Wrapping Station
If you’re not a year-round wrapping enthusiast, this set up doesn’t have to be permanent. But having a designated area for wrapping is a huge help in the frenzy before the Holidays.
A super simple set up is to corral everything in a market cart like above, but this station that hangs in the closet when not in use is pretty darn smart. If you want to go extra simple, these low profile bins fit wrapping paper perfectly and can slide right under the bed.
7. Perfect Your Holiday Playlist
Lots of artists like Leona Lewis and Kelly Clarkson are releasing their first Holiday albums this year. Pick up a few new ones to freshen up this year’s holiday tunes, or check out this playlist that’s the perfect mix between classics and new hits.
8. Deep Clean The Kitchen
Scrub everything from top to bottom a week or two before guests arrive. Spot clean from there just to keep things manageable.
Next take a long hard look at the your foodstuffs. Toss or donate anything expired from the pantry and fridge. You’ll be needing all the space you can get soon. Save room in the freezer by taking things out of their boxes and just storing the vacuum sealed bags.
Pull out serving dishes and label them with post-its as you plan your menu. Take inventory of kitchen tools and get anything you need rather than realizing it when you’re elbow deep in mashed potatoes.
9. Stock Up On Essentials
Before family arrives, make sure you’re fully stocked on paper towels, napkins, dishwasher detergent, trash bags and ziplocs. A trip to the members only superstore bight be in order. Grab a bunch of candles too. Light a few after the big meal to make sure cooking smells don’t linger too long.
10. Jazz Up The Mantle
If you don’t have room for a tree, decorating the mantle is an easy way to give your home holiday cheer. Try a new color palette like pastels or neons this year to give your old decorations a fresh look. Some bright ribbon is all you need to get the look above.
Make Your Home Merry and Bright!
Need more ideas for holiday home prep? Read How To Decorate for Thanksgiving Guests.