Perform a Christmas miracle and turn that unappreciated dumping ground into a space you and your visitors will love.
- Credit: PA
So you’re decking the halls, ordering the feast and packing presents - but there’s one essential task that shouldn’t be overlooked: sorting our your spare room!
Although this space rarely gets the love it deserves the rest of the year (think an overload of clutter and dismal decor), it’ll be in the spotlight over the holidays, when visitors come to stay.
Giving it some TLC - even if it’s just some new (bargain) bedding, accessories like a table lamp or cushion, and a seasonal decoration or two - will work wonders.
If you need a little more encouragement, remember that a spare room isn’t just for Christmas! A revamp will pay dividends if you end up loving the space and using it more the rest of the time, too.
So treat your ‘spare’ to one of these three transformations, then sit back and wait for the compliments from your festive guests to roll in...
Create a cosy festive nest
“It’s lovely to have fun with bedding at this time of year and you can make it as seasonal as you like, which children will love and it’ll help adult guests get into the spirit of the season, too,” says Adam Black, co-founder of bed and mattress specialists, Button & Sprung (buttonandsprung.com).
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“Alternatively, use bedding most reflective of your guests’ decor taste, whether its cotton or linen, plain or patterned. Air the room the day before they arrive, and ensure pets are kept out of it in case visitors have allergies.
“A set of soft, scented towels on the edge of a bed is always welcome and ensures guests can pack light. Fresh flowers, a scent diffuser, scented drawer liners, and a radio on a bedside table, are thoughtful touches which will be appreciated.”
George Home’s cosy seasonal selection includes a Brushed Cotton Tartan Bedding Range, from £13; Woven Check Cushion, £7; a super-cute Santa Caravan Teapot, currently reduced to £5.50 from £8, and a ‘The Most Wonderful Time of the Year’ Cushion, £6 - all ideal for putting together your snug, Christmassy space.
Tip: Make sure there are enough electrical sockets for charging phones, tablets, and laptops, plus an extension cable near the bed. Don’t overdress a bed with cushions, as they’ll only have to pile up somewhere when the bed’s being used, taking up much needed space in a compact room.
Create An Alpine Sanctuary
“Silver, greys and neutral shades conjure a soft, serene look for a guest room, and as this scheme is so calming, it can be the perfect antidote to the bustle and stress of the holiday,” advises Lucy Ackroyd, design manager at linen and towel specialists, Christy (christy.co.uk).
“A shot of colour works really well with this palette. An injection of rich green, mimicking winter foliage, maybe for a set of towels or cushions, or even a fresh garland or a mini-tree, will bring a room to life and avoid it being too bland.”
Tip: Thick curtains, a bedside rug, and a draught-excluder for the door will help keep winter chills at bay. A blackout blind’s another nice touch, which will ensure holiday lie-ins aren’t disrupted by unwanted light.
Conjure luxe hotel style
“Guests should feel cossetted and indulged in a spare bedroom that can be their personal retreat, where they can relax and recharge during their stay,” says Emma Sims Hilditch, creative director of furniture, home decor and accessories company, Neptune (neptune.com).
“I always use high thread-count Egyptian cotton bed linen and have at least one snuggly blanket at the foot of the bed, as well as a couple of extra pillows, in case they’re needed.
“Hang a towelling robe on the back of a door, pop spare slippers by the bed, and if visitors are arriving in the evening, always turn on the bedside lamp so the room looks wonderfully inviting as soon as they step into it.”
Tip: Details count, so provide a jug of fresh water and tumblers, a kettle and mugs, and some magazines. Fill a wicker basket with treats, such as a pillow spray and bath products, plus cotton pads and a spare phone charger.