It doesn’t take long to make your guest room fit for purpose– and luckily you don’t need a whole new decorating budget either. You can easily make it comfortable for friends and family with a few styling tricks and finishing touches. Jenny Aves, who has a homeware brand of luxe cotton and linen bedlinen, regularly welcomes friends and family to stay in her seaside home. “I am so lucky to have so many friends who want to come to visit me in Cornwall for their dose of sea air. Consequently, my cottage is like a boutique bed and breakfast, and my guest room is always ready to welcome visitors looking to escape to the coast.”
Dress A Bed With Clean, Crisp Linen
It all starts with the bed. “After a long journey, a freshly made bed with delicately scented sheets is the most inviting sight to guests,” says Jenny. “It shows your guest that you care about them, and their wellbeing. You are inviting them to relax and sleep well in your home.” Always ensure the bedding is crisp and clean. Consider dressing the bed with throws and cushions – as well as creating a luxe, welcoming look, it allows guests to keep cool or wrap up warm without having to ask you to adjust the heating. “My preference is white bedlinen and I add a gentle touch of colour with my Hemmick Bedspreads which drape softly over the foot of the bed for guests to nestle in."
Create A Quiet Corner
A chair in the corner allows guests somewhere to air their clothes at the end of the day or sit and make a phone call if they want some privacy. Why not find a cool accent chair and make a feature of it? We love this Cox & Cox Rattan Cone Chair for stylish addition.
Be Generous With Towel Supply
Some people want one, some need three. Cover all your bases with a basket of different sized, matching towels, like these White Company options, so guests don’t get caught out or feel awkward asking for more.
No one wants to get all cosy for the night and then have to get out of bed to turn off the main light. If space is in short supply, a wall-mounted scone works well. Otherwise, a bedside table light is ideal- this West Elm option is neat and practical.
Invest In A Good Pillow, Duvet And Mattress
The one thing you want your guests to have while they’re under your roof is a good night’s sleep, but often you’ll use the neglected bed and old and ‘spare’ bedwear for guests. Having good quality pillows, a duvet and a comfy mattress is key for comfort. These are as important, if not more than the fancy bed sheets themselves, although at SL we are big fans of Secret Linen.
Clear Away The Clutter
There’s nothing worse than someone’s old family pics or an ancient collection of school albums gathering dust, that can ruin a room’s ambience. If you haven’t got time before your guest’s arrival, simply place in the loft or out of sight and sort through (and chuck) at a later date. A clear room always looks cleaner and is far more welcoming than a corner of clutter.
Make Sure There’s Hanging Space
You don’t need to invest in built-in wardrobes for the sake of your guests, but having somewhere for them to hang their clothes shows thoughtfulness and makes your guests feel at home. Make sure at the very least you have a couple of clothes hooks at the back of the door and some spare hangers. A foldable luggage rack is really useful too.
Think About The Little Details That Make A Big Difference
It is nice to provide a selection of books and even a DAB radio so, if they wake up early your guest can keep themselves entertained. “I ensure that my guests have a carafe of water on their bedside table for their comfort,” says Jenny. Extra blankets and a small stack of magazines is always a nice touch.
Scent The Room
A beautiful bunch of fresh flowers is a great addition – Bloom & Wild’s Olivia Harvey suggests pretty colours that are subtly fragranced. “I always leave one of my British Seaweed soaps for guests to use during their stay, and in winter months,” says Jenny. The finishing touch is a scented candle – it’s ideal for creating a cosy atmosphere and subtly scenting a room. Interior designer and candlemaker Victoria Cator suggests: “Putting a candle in a spare room is an inviting way to welcome your friends and family into the space. The light flicker and scent can create the perfect ambiance to make anyone feel at home and relaxed.” Her L’Orangerie edition is really gorgeous.