Getting the house ready for holiday guests

Posted on November 11, 2016 by Sonoma Valley Sun

By Kati Kelly | For The Sun — Figs are falling, the grape leaves are turning, and the air has that “fall” smell to it. If those aren’t hints enough, go into any store and there it is — Christmas decor! (cringe!) Alas, it is that time again to put away the sandals and pull out the boots. This also means that it is time to start thinking about the holidays and the family and friends that will be sure to join you in celebration.

I have one question to ask, are you ready for them? No, not mentally! I meant physically. How is your guest room looking? Is it time for an update? Regardless of your personal style, there are a few common factors that can turn your guest room into a five-star experience.   Take heed, these tips will make your guest room so inviting your in-laws may never want to leave.

  1. A great mattress. Just like with wine, each person has their own personal palette which can make shopping for guest mattresses a bit daunting. Never fear. A medium density mattress is the goldilocks of mattresses. Not too firm, not too soft, just right. Ask your local mattress sales associate to guide you to a medium density mattress. While you are at it, you may want to consider a new headboard, too. Nothing makes a bed feel more inviting than a beautiful headboard. There are great deals on upholstered headboards all over the internet so you don’t have to spend a fortune to really spruce up the room.


  1. A place for suitcases. Nobody likes getting on their hands and knees to find the other sock, especially grandma! Bare bones: pick up an affordable luggage rack that you can stash in the closet between guests. Or, do what I like to do — place a beautiful (and functional) bench at the foot of the bed. This serves two purposes. It provides a place for a suitcase as well as a place to sit while putting on that other sock. Select a tufted, upholstered bench in a fabric that coordinates with your bedding to give a more traditional feel. Or, select a wood or rattan bench for an earthier vibe. But, please, whatever you do, don’t select a faux black leather bench!


  1. unnamed-15Bedside manner. You must have at least one bedside table. It doesn’t have to be an official nightstand; make it unique to reflect your personal style. It can be a desk, side table or even a bar cart. Just something to set a glass of water and personal items on. In addition to that, there are a few other items that are a necessity, and they will likely need your Wi-Fi password. Provide an outlet to charge cell phones. A simple extension cord from the hardware store works if you weren’t blessed with an outlet on either side of the bed. Or, if you are shopping for new nightstands, look for one that has power outlets built into the drawers. In addition to that, make sure to have a lamp on both sides of the bed for reading, and one clock in the room. (Just make sure it doesn’t tick!)


  1. Personal touches. If you are shopping for new bedding, consider white. White feels like a luxurious hotel, and it works with any wall paint color and can be bleached. Make sure to have extra pillows available,; a new decorative pillow or two will dress up any bedding. A cozy blanket over the foot of the bed will help protect your new bedding from dirty shoes as well as provide extra warmth on the foggy Sonoma evenings. I suggest a tray on either the bed or your new bench with a small vase of fresh flowers and bottled water.


  1. A mirror. Especially if you don’t have a bathroom attached to said guest room. No one wants to get caught walking out of the room with their hair sticking up in seventeen different directions! Allow your guests the opportunity to comb hair, check make-up and feel confident with their appearance before walking out to greet you. I suggest hanging a framed mirror with a little personality. A gaudy gold frame, carved wood, white-washed shabby chic: anything goes! However, the bigger the better. A large mirror not only helps make the room feel larger, but it doubles as a piece of art. If you have room for a floor mirror, even better!


No matter your budget, you can update your room in as little as a weekend shopping trip. These simple designer tricks will help you create a lovely five-star, hotel-like experience in your own home and will be sure to impress even your most difficult house guests.


If you need help styling your guest room, reach out to [email protected].




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