Yes, it is possible to get your home holiday ready by Thursday. It’s going to be hard, but aren’t all the good things in life?
First, rank your home focus areas by importance of making a good impression as a host. If you’re entertaining family for a big turkey dinner, the dining room might be your starting point. Having overnight guests and haven’t put the finishing touches on your extra bedroom? Or need to transform an office or living area into a sleeping alcove? Start there. Your guests likely won’t remember how beautiful your table setting was if they have to sleep on the floor!
Having your ranked list of rooms will help you stay on track. Now isn’t the time to think about personal spaces that your guests don’t have to see. You only have one week. Save those areas for after Thanksgiving.
Seating: Make sure you have enough! If you’re short on chairs, grab a bench for the long side of the table. Don’t knock folding chairs as a respectable options. While they aren’t the most stylish, they’ll get you by in a pinch and you can fold them up and store them away for next year.
Place settings, serving platters, and utensils: Take a few hours this weekend to take inventory of what you have and what you need. Make sure you have enough dinner plates, silverware, and large serving pieces. If you’re short, don’t worry! Head over to your local Pier 1 or Crate & Barrel, which are great go-tos for in-stock place settings. You can buy holiday themed plates or basic whites that you can continue to use year round. You can also try places like T.J. Maxx or Homegoods, but you might not find enough of the same pattern for an entire table setting.
Tablescape: Opt for flowers, gourds, and candles. You’ll be able to pick these up at the grocery store while you’re grabbing the final touches for your menu. Hand-written place cards are a nice touch too. And, they’ll trick your guests into thinking you’ve planned this for weeks!
Extra seating: Stools and poufs are great options for extra seating that can be reconfigured to fit your entertaining needs. You can keep them in front of the fireplace or next to the coffee table on a daily basis and prop up your feet after a long day. When entertaining, shift them around to seat extra guests.
Finishing touches: Get a blanket and some throw pillows to make your space feel a bit more personalized. CB2 and West Elm are my favorite places for these kinds of accessories. You can spend happily knowing it’s something you’ll love year round!
Print out a few pictures you love and hang or place them around the room. You can get large photos in a just few hours at Target (which also has frames!) or Walgreens. Place your order online and pick up in store to maximize your time.
Inflatable mattress: If you need to sleep some extra guests, I’ve bought many a last minute inflatable mattress at Target. Make it feel a bit more comfortable with extra pillows and proper sheets and blankets.
Add flowers: A fresh bouquet of flowers or sprigs of eucalyptus adds a natural beauty to any space and makes guests feel special.
Bed: If you still don’t have a bed for your guest room, don’t worry! Many mattress stores offer delivery within 24 hours! Here in San Francisco Sleep Train offers a huge selection of brands. Casper can also deliver same day in a few major metro areas. In a total pinch? Pick up a mattress and take it home immediately from IKEA.
Mattress topper: Does your guest room have the janky, old mattress from your first apartment? Add a mattress topper to make it a bit more comfortable. Check out Macy’s, Target, or Bed, Bath & Beyond to pick one up same day.
Pillows: Make sure you have enough pillows! I think 4 pillows for king or queen bed makes a nice, luxurious place to sleep.
Don’t waste time shopping online. Furniture and home decor often have long lead times, and you’ll lose precious time trying to find quick-ship, in-stock options.
Weigh the benefits of immediate need vs. long-term happiness. Most pieces of furniture that are available immediately will be the “fast fashion” options. Don’t expect them to be your forever pieces. If you’d rather invest in a piece of furniture that you can have for years to come, opt for Craigslist or consignment shops. Start the day with a car big enough to carry larger pieces home, so you don’t have to plan to go back and pick something up.
Do you have any last minute tips on how to get ready for Thanksgiving? Share them below!