Houston just got its second blast of cold air, and while it arrived a little early for us, it has been a catalyst to prompt my thinking about the holidays. Most of us are either getting ready to host family and friends, or we are getting ready to visit them elsewhere. One thing I always try to do when I am hosting, and that I appreciate when I am a guest, is having the perfect place for guests’ personal items. Identifying a place for items during a party or during extended stays shows your guests that you have put thought and care into welcoming them into your home. Let’s explore some clever ways to create these welcoming places in your home while providing storage for guests.
Entryway Table Have you ever been to a party and felt like you had to carry your purse with you everywhere? Show your guests that you appreciate them taking the time to join your event by having a designated space for coats and bags. If you are just having a few friends over, this could be as simple as a table near your front door. This is also helpful in reminding people to grab their belongings on the way out. The table you choose should fit the style of your home. This Adagio 48” Console Table from WayFair ($299.99) is a steal at 58% off the asking price of $700 at the time we published this article.
Hall and Entryway Closets
Now is the perfect time to look in your hall and/or entryway closet(s). Scrutinize the contents and search for anything that can be donated. Make someone’s holiday by donating any older coats, jackets, and rainboots that you have accumulated over the years. By cleaning out the space, you are more easily able to hang up your guests’ coats, instead of needing to place them in a spare room not being used during the party.
This is also a great opportunity to go through the mudroom with an eye for items you can donate. Several local baseball teams are getting ready to end their fall seasons, and many of those leagues ask for donated equipment at the end of the season so they can be ready for the next. Involve the kids in the process and teach them that giving back a little at this time of year is important.
Opening space in the mudroom for your guests to use will help ensure they have an enjoyable stay while keeping your home neat. Clear out items in cubbies that have not moved in months. There is a better place to store these items and, again, it cuts back on the clutter that often takes over a mudroom. I prefer a mudroom with plenty of storage, so we aim to maximize the use of cubbies and bench seating with storage underneath. Invite your guests to use this space during parties to store their coats, purses and umbrellas, if necessary. Take a look at our “Mudroom Must Haves” blog for more great mudroom ideas.
You may be preparing to have family or friends come and stay with you during the holidays. Now is the time to spruce up the guest bedroom by doing some quick cleaning. Open space in the closets, clean out drawers in the bathroom and empty nightstands and dressers. Dedicating time to do this now will contribute to your guests feeling welcome when they arrive and have a space of their own to relax and enjoy. I also like to leave a basket of healthy snacks and make sure some of my favorite books are available for my guests to enjoy. There are more great tips on preparing a guest room in our blog “Decorating Guest Rooms.”
Nightstands in Guest Rooms
Nightstands come in a seemingly infinite variety of styles and colors. We talked about this in our blog “Favorite Nightstand Features.” The most important thing to consider is the height of the nightstand as it relates to the top of the mattress. Over the last couple of years as we become more dependent on our mobile phones and other devices, most people prefer to charge those devices on their nightstands. This MODERN Astor Nightstand has a power strip with three AC outlets and two USB charging ports. This should provide plenty of access to power up your guests’ devices.
Dressers and Armoires in Guest Rooms
If you have limited closet space in the guest room, a good dresser or armoire could be the solution to providing your guests the storage they need to stay comfortably in your home. This is where I love to get creative. We can work some real magic on older dressers and armoires in a similar way that we can work with other furniture. You can add a pop of color to any room and create a real statement piece. If you’re looking for inspiration, just take a look at our blog, “Upholstering & Refinishing Furniture.”
Finally, don’t forget that overnight guests may have only brought a few toiletries with them. For those times when you get to spend several days with each other, making the guest bathroom “guest-ready” is a must. Check vanity drawers to be sure there are not old items that should be discarded. Declutter the counters so they don’t feel like they have to work around items you have placed on the counter.
Whether your guests are just attending a party or they are going to be with you for a few days or longer, it’s important to have a plan for where to store their personal items. Doing so will make them feel welcome and encourage them to relax upon arrival. Opening up space for them also provides you the opportunity to declutter. Your guests will appreciate your efforts to encourage them to feel right at home. Let’s roll out the welcome mat this holiday season!