You have that bedroom at the end of the hallway. It has a bed and a way of collecting discarded items from the rest of the house, but your friends called, and they are coming to visit and were hoping to stay with you.
Now is the time to clean out your spare room and transform it into a gracious guest bedroom that seamlessly compliments the rest of your home. After all, you are an amazing hostess.
When you decorate your guest bedroom, it should be calming and comfortable and compliment your design style. Eve if it isn’t used on a daily basis, decorating your guest bedroom should be done with care and consideration. A thoughtful host will leave their guests with a memorable stay.
Here are 10 hard earned rules for decorating a thoughtfully designed guest room that will leave your guests feeling right at home.
1. PRIVACY IS PARAMOUNT
Before your guests arrive, make sure that the bedroom door closes and the lock works. This may sound obvious, but many homeowners get used to the quirks in their own home and forget that their guests may have different expectations.
I was once staying with friends and the door closed but didn’t quite latch and their dog kept pushing the door open while I got dressed. I ended up hiding on the opposite side of the bed while the dog stared at me.
2. DON’T DECORATE WITH PRIZED POSSESSIONS OR FAMILY HEIRLOOMS
You may feel like a spare room is a safe place for these family relics because it is often unoccupied. But there is nothing more awkward or embarrassing than breaking your grandmother’s ceramic swan that she was given as a wedding gift and then having to carry the shattered pieces in to fess up.
This exact thing once happened to me. My grandmother was very upset, and although I ended up getting her similar swan as a Christmas gift that year, I knew it would never be the same.
3. CREATE A PLACE FOR YOUR GUESTS TO RELAX…NOT JUST A PLACE TO SLEEP
Often times on trips you need a place to rest and recharge, in addition to a comfortable place to sleep. A comfortable armchair, ottoman and blanket go a long way making the room feel more like home. And although most people bring their computer or tablet to catch up on their latest Netflix binge, having an extra Fire Stick or Roku hooked up to the guest room TV is a thoughtful gesture.
4. USE GOOD LINENS AND BEDDING FOR THE GUEST BED
Hopefully you have a decent mattress in your guest bedroom and not the one your parents got for you when you were eight and finally got your own room. (If this sounds like your mattress and getting a new one is a little over-budget, consider adding a quality mattress pad.)
Break out the good linens, not those 200 thread count ones you got on sale. Make sure you have fluffy pillows (for sleeping) and that you like the bedding. It should be pretty but also give your guests a good night’s sleep, because well rested guests are happy guests!
5. ALWAYS LEAVE EXTRA PILLOWS AND BLANKETS EASILY ACCESSIBLE
Even though you like to sleep in a house that is 62 degrees, your guests may be used to something a bit warmer. Just like when staying in a hotel, leave a couple extra pillows and blankets in the closet or wardrobe where they can be easily found if your guests require a toastier atmosphere.
6. CONSIDER THE TENDENCIES OF THE ROOM
If your guest room for some reason seems to be closed off from the rest of your climate-controlled house and has a tendency to become very hot or very cold, consider keeping a space heater or oscillating fan tucked away in the closet.
When staying with family over the holidays, I was once given the small back bedroom that received NO HEAT and was always like a freezer. Luckily, my hosts had prepared and left a space heater for me to set to a comfortable 70 degrees instead of the 52 degrees the room normally held.
7. SHARE THE WI-FI WITH YOUR GUESTS
Nowadays we can’t survive without wi-fi for very long, so when guests come to stay make them feel welcome (and connected) by sharing your wi-fi information with them. A simple print with a humorous saying or pretty design along with the wi-fi network and password framed and placed on the nightstand or dresser will do the trick nicely.
You can find ready to download personalized prints on Etsy or Vistaprint, or if you are creative you can make your own.
8. MAKE SURE YOUR GUESTS HAVE SOMEWHERE TO RECHARGE….LITERALLY
Wen we travel we have our phones, tablets, computers and who knows what else. Rather than leaving your guests to pull out the bed and scratch your beautiful wood floors in search of another outlet, consider getting a charging station. A properly set up charging station on a nightstand or dresser keeps your floors safe and your guests comfortable knowing that their devices will always be ready to use.
9. TO UP YOUR HOSTESS GAME, ADD A NOISE-MACHINE TO YOUR GUEST ROOM
People are all different, some of us need silence to sleep while others may be used to the sounds of traffic or an air conditioner. Adding a noise machine will help your guests to feel right at home and settle into a comfortable night’s sleep quickly. (It also helps if you have thin walls, if you catch my drift.)
10. DON’T OVER DECORATE
When decorating your guest room it can be easy to get carried away, but the design and décor should be simple and well-thought out. Don’t clutter the room, make sure it is clean and tidy and that your guests have ample space for their bags. You could even set out a stylish luggage rack or two to keep the room organized.
Having friends and family to visit can be stressful, but a little forethought into your guest bedroom design and decorating choices can ease the preparations and help build your reputation as a thoughtful and gracious hostess. Go ahead, you got this girl!