How to Make Your Houseguest Feel Like a Rock Star
With Christmas just a few short weeks away, we’re right in the middle of prime houseguest season. For many of us, that means that friends and family will soon start showing up on our doorsteps looking for a warm bed and a complementary Netflix login.
A four-poster canopy bed that appears pure white on its own, took on a yellow-white appearance once introduced into the room and surrounded by blue-white walls, as well as ultra-white elements including lamp shades, bedding and night stands with glossy drawer fronts.
We bet you already have comfy bed covered, but we have a few easy suggestions for some ideas to steal to help make each of your houseguests feel like a real-life rockstar.
Easy Wi-Fi Access
To make Wi-Fi access easy and breezy, why not incorporate the network and password in your guest room's decor? Here, basic pillowcases were dropped off with a local seamstress, who monogrammed the flanges with the name of the network and the homeowner's password. Should guests forget the login information, they can find it right on their pillow and avoid late-night inquiries to the host.
What’s usually the No. 1 question a houseguest usually asks after settling in for a visit? What’s the Wi-Fi network and password info? This is a brilliant way to ensure that your guest never has to bug you with this question again: embroider it on their pillowcase! Another great idea is to print out the Wi-Fi/password info and put it in a frame on their bedside table.
Classic and Elegant White and Silver Table Vignette
From an icy blue and white color palette to touches of silver and rich, menswear-inspired fabrics, see how a lackluster bedroom gets a winter-inspired makeover full of the season's hottest trends. In this design from Brian Patrick Flynn, a collection of framed artwork and photography is simply leaned against the wall above the entry’s console table. A small table lamp made of mercury glass helps reflect the light it emits once switched on at night. A mirrored console table serves as the base for this lovely white and silver vignette, featuring silver frames, white hydrangeas, silver bird accessories and a white faux deer head.
Fresh flowers are always a lovely way to make your houseguests feel welcome. If your guest is going to be staying with you for more than a day or so, make sure you remember to go in and change the water for their arrangement. If you’re not able to grab fresh flowers, however, consider a small plant or some succulents on a tray.
In-Room Snack Bar
Snack Food Gift Basket
Help friends avoid any last-minute entertaining fiascoes with a thoughtful dry goods dessert basket. Gather an assortment of finger food-style desserts, then present them in clear bags and glass containers. Should extra guests show up to holiday gatherings, the recipient will have more than enough dessert options to end the night in good spirits.
Try using a small cart to create a fun snack bar for your guests. You can include bottles of water, iced tea or twist-off soda bottles. You can even include some beer (with a bottle opener) for your over-21 guests. Small bags of chips, nuts or candy bars would also be nice to include. Make sure you also leave plenty of napkins, small bowls or plates, as well as coasters that your guests can use on their bedside table.
While it might be tempting to skimp on the bedding for a guest room, it really can make the world of difference for all of your family and friends who will be staying with you. Try to have at least two sets of guest bedroom bedding on hand that is at least 300-thread count. Fluffy pillows and a fresh duvet/down comforter are always a good bet, too. And don’t forget to have an extra blanket or two easily accessible in case your guest gets chilly.
If you tend to have a lot of houseguests, you might want to create an easy access household notebook for them. You can either write out info or print it out (and glue it to the pages), so that your guests have all the scoop they need during their stay. You can include things like:
- Alarm codes
- Necessary phone numbers
- Info for entering and exiting the house
- How to use the remote control(s)
- Info on the washer/dryer
Chic Spa Bathroom With Freestanding Tub
Designer Sarah Richardson used full-length curtains to give the illusion of a picture window behind the freestanding soaking tub in this modern master bathroom, while a patterned table holds bath-time essentials.
One of my very favorite things about staying at a nice hotel is the giant fluffy robe that they always have hanging in the bathroom to use throughout your stay. If you want to make things super luxe for your guests, consider investing in a yummy, thick robe that you can leave for them on the back of your guest bedroom door. You could even embroider a cheeky little phrase on the robe for fun such as “boom” or “#winning.”
Clear Acrylic Magazine Rack
Need easy access to magazines or favorite coffee table books, but worried you'll clutter up end tables and coffee tables? Clear acrylic magazine racks keep everything easily identifiable and within arms reach.
Flynnside Out Productions
Why not leave your guest a stack of some current magazines or books to help keep them busy during their stay? You can customize the reading materials based on your guest's preferences.
Printable Christmas Card With Decorated Santa
Use glitter glue, cotton balls, markers or any other fun embellishments to make your Santa card truly one-of-a-kind. Tip: For the "Dear Santa" card design, have the kids write to Santa or create a wish list inside the card.
Picasa, ten22 studio 2013
An easy way to make your houseguest feel truly welcome is to leave a personal note for them on their bed or on the bedside table. Try having each member of the family write a quick message to make them feel extra special. And feel free to share any important details about any events or outings that they should have on their radar while they're staying with you.
Graphic Christmas Tree Card
Surprise friends and family with this cute, three-dimensional card. Trendy chevron, trellis and polka-dot patterns plus traditional Christmas colors equal a hip card that really pops. Our step-by-step instructions and printable templates will make assembling this card a breeze.
Kids' Craft: Yarn Embellished Ornament Card
Modern Ornament Holiday Card
This sophisticated card is sure to impress. Everyone appreciates a handmade card, and our exclusive printable templates make crafting one a snap. Get step-by-step instructions.
Vintage Sheet Music Christmas Card
Forget store-bought, mass-produced Christmas cards. Show friends and family how special they are with vintage-inspired handmade holiday cards. Get step-by-step instructions.
Fun Felt Cards
These easy felt cards come together in a snap and their soft texture and bright colors ensure they'll stand out from the pack. To create, use pinking shears to cut a 5" x 7" dark-gray felt rectangle for each card. Next, cut colorful felt into assorted holiday-themed shapes and glue onto card base. Finish by stitching on holiday greetings which have been printed onto paper. Image courtesy of Melanie Blodgett
Recycled Paper Cards
Easy to create, these cards are a fun, kid-friendly project that creatively reuse bits of paper you already have on hand. Click the link below for complete instructions, then print out one of our holiday-shaped templates to get you started. Get step-by-step instructions.
Natural Christmas Cards
Take a stroll outdoors to gather natural elements to create these eco-friendly, organic holiday greetings. If you plan to mail the cards, choose flat embellishments. For cards you'll hand-deliver, use chunkier, more textural options. Get step-by-step instructions.
Photo Wreath Ornament Card
Surprise friends and family with glittering wreath-shaped photo cards that can also be used as an ornament. Be sure to include a recent family photo so they can see what you've been up to. Get step-by-step instructions.
If your guest has never been to your area before, they may need some help when it comes to things to do, restaurants or places to go shopping. There are several apps available now that will allow you to create your own personal guidebook filled with all of your local favorites. One of my new faves is Pearlshare.
Holiday Food Gift: Coffee Cupcakes Recipe
These coffee-flavored cupcakes make the perfect homemade holiday gift and come in their own coffee-themed to-go container. Dress them up with a ribbon and mini ornament to spread seasonal cheer.
In my house, we like to go to the local Starbucks every morning for some coffee. So I designed some quick and easy coffee order forms that I always make sure to share with our overnight guests to find exactly what type of coffee they like in the morning. This way I can run out early morn, get everyone’s coffee, and by the time they wake up, their order will be ready and waiting for them.
A Grand Entrance
Your guests' holiday experience begins at the front door and entryway. Greenery, tasteful lights and decorations set the stage. Customize your seasonal decorations with some DIY touches. "Welcome guests at the door with a fresh wreath made from a treestand studded with things you forage," says stylist and author Matthew Mead. His wreath features pinecones, acorns, berries and roses in water picks to dress up the greenery. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
"Colorful produce is a fragrant and easy way to add style to the entry," Mead says. "Inexpensive fruits like green apples, tangelos and lemons" add interest everywhere, from centerpieces to the staircase, and create engaging focal points, he says. "Berries and sprigs of evergreen add a festive touch." Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
Stylist and designer, Tara Riceberg likes to decorate a foyer by adding traditional seasonal touches to everyday home accessories. Here, the hallway table houses a glittering tinsel tree, wrapped gifts and a plant sparked with a little holiday glam. "To simply transition from fall into the holidays, dress up plants with your favorite keepsake ornaments," she says. "Choose a plant like an orchid that can easily support the weight of decorations and isn't too leafy, so you get a great view of your (treasured accents)." Photo courtesy of Tara Riceberg.
The Best for Guests
Mead doesn't miss a trick when he "feathers a nest for a guest." His checklist includes a reading light, cozy throw blankets, a big basket with bottled water and snacks. (Try mixed dried fruits and sweet-and-salty pecans in cellophane bags.) Evergreen sachets scent the room, while lavender-spritzed linens encourage sweet dreams with visions of sugarplums.
Smart tip: Mead reminds that high-tech guests will definitely appreciate an iPod docking station, an outlet strip for extra cords and a small note on how to use the household wi-fi. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
Deck Your Plants
Riceberg adds a selection of current magazines and a gift of plush slippers, and she never underestimates the power of pretty plants. "They literally breathe life into the room," she says. Preferable to fresh-cut flowers for their longevity and easy maintenance, plants can easily add holiday flair to the guestroom, and throughout the house, with another of Riceberg's simple tweaks: "I like to jazz up plants by switching out traditional moss with pine cones, tinsel or cranberries." Photo courtesy of Tara Riceberg.
For Festive Feasts
When setting the holiday table, Riceberg is always mindful of the details. Special little refinements show not only stylish flair, but thought and care. Here, her candlelit dining room gets subtle seasonal touches with sprigs of holly tucked into silver napkin rings, mini poinsettias flanking a centerpiece of floating candles and garland wreaths along the sideboard. Photo courtesy of Tara Riceberg.
Easy-to-Recreate Place Cards
Mead customizes his sit-down dinners with unusual and handcrafted place cards, such as these delicate paper angels, simply inscribed in elegant script. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
Bedeck the Bath
The guest bath and powder room are perfect places for a little merriment. Riceberg adds seasonally scented candles, a teeny poinsettia plant and a festive carved dish used as a sink-top towel holder. Photo courtesy of Tara Riceberg.
Rejoice in Repurposing
Mead's terrific touches also include some very clever holiday uses for household items. Here, scrolled drawer-pulls make heavenly napkin holders. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
"Use your collections to create a whimsical and engaging display in minutes," imparts Mead. We adore the collection of turquoise glassware he gathered and positioned in a bookshelf to resemble the outline of a Christmas tree — it's even dotted with silvery orbs like the real deal. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
Show Off Holiday Plants
Riceberg grouped lacquered boxes atop a long table as a cohesive and graphic display for a selection of traditional holiday plants, a topiary and even a simple sprig of mistletoe. Photo courtesy of Tara Riceberg.
A selection of exquisitely wrapped gifts are perfect for pop-over guests and for sprinkling around the house for touches of holiday spirit.
"Welcome guests with a porcelain compote filled with tiny boxes of chocolate wrapped in colorful, patterned paper from a stationary store," Mead says. For kids, "cards, puzzles and mini games can be wrapped and trimmed with candies." He suggests keeping other little pre-wrapped surprises, such as books and gift cards, on hand as well. Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.
Want a tiny treat that packs a pitch-perfect punch? Says Riceberg, "A great last-minute gift is a memory stick with your favorite holiday tunes or playlist of the evening's musical selections." Photo courtesy of Matthew Mead.