As Christmas approaches I experience a creeping awareness of the things in my home that I've been meaning to fix all year, but have never quite found the time! I buy tester pots of paint to touch-up scuffed walls, notice chips on plates I've ignored and seek quick and easy ways to make my guest bedroom more inviting.
In this post I'll share some top tips for making your guest bedroom more welcoming on a budget. Read on for simple ideas to help your Christmas visitors feel like they're home from home.
Flowers from the garden
When I go home for the weekend my Mum always puts a vase of flowers from the garden in my room. This small but thoughtful gesture makes me feel extra special. Shop bought flowers will do too of course, but there’s something about the casualness of a home-grown posy that's especially thoughtful. At Christmas time, fragrant foliage like eucalyptus and pine sprigs (the trimmings from the tree with do) will make the room smell lovely too.
A little privacy
Allocating space as a dedicated guest room is a luxury many of us don’t have, especially over the festive period where numerous visitors push available beds to the limit. If possible, give your friends and family a little nook of their own even if the room has another function – like a home office or storage – the rest of the time. Hang a panel curtain from the ceiling or invest in a folding screen to give your visitors a small private area of the room.
It’s always nice to be able to unpack your bag when you go to stay, so try to provide a little space to hang clothes if you possibly can. A few hooks on the back of the door and some wooden hangers is enough, or clear out one drawer your guests can use for their stay.
Ever stubbed your toe finding your way back from the loo in an unfamiliar house? Spare you visitors the agony by popping a simple lamp next to the bed. You can also add plug-in floor level lights along the hallway which come on automatically in the evening to guide visitors to the bathroom or downstairs for a bedtime snack.
Somewhere to wash
This one’s very dormitory chic, but I love the idea of fitting a washbasin in the corner of the guest room to relieve pressure on the bathrooms when you have a full-house. There are loads of incredibly compact options, even some that will easily fit inside a fitted wardrobe. Look for teeny tiny wall mounted basins designed for downstairs cloakrooms and add a pretty towel and water glass for a vintage touch.
I’m a total fuss pot when it comes to my bed – I like a nest of duvets and wool blankets wrapped around my body but my head always on the cold side of the pillow. Most people have their own bedding preferences, so the only way around this is to offer several bedlinen and blanket layers they can add or take away as they like. A colourful throw on the bed can instantly cheer up your room and will appreciated by winter visitors.
Tea in the morning
Warning! Only consider this one if you really like your guests… bringing up a cup of tea or coffee first thing is sure to earn you the accolade of perfect host and you run the risk they’ll want to stay forever!