With the colder weather beginning to settle in and winter festivities on the horizon, homes across the country will be getting their homes ready for the holidays. If you’re yet to begin your preparations and are looking for a little help then these tips should do the trick.
Clean from top to bottom
While preparations such as putting the decorations up may take centre stage, there is plenty of prep work to do before this stage. The first step is to clean your home from top to bottom. Essentially this is like another spring clean so allocate sufficient time to the task and get stuck in!
Work logically from room to room, cleaning floors, windows and walls. Take the opportunity to sort through clothing and possessions to get rid of clutter and make sure everything you keep is well organised and neatly stored.
Once you’ve got a clean slate to work with, the next thing you need to do is increase the temperature. Using the heating over winter is not only a way to make our homes more comfortable but can also prevent common household problems such as mould or damp.
If you have gas central heating then get a professional engineer out to check and service your boiler at the start of the winter season and bleed the radiators when you first put the heating on. Once you’ve had everything checked, set your thermostat to a comfortable level and use timers to ensure you only heat the home when necessary.
To inject warmth elsewhere, use soft furnishings such as blankets and throws. These are great additions to use throughout the home and can really inject some festive spirit into your house if chosen in festive colours and patterns.
For living rooms, bright or patterned throws draped over the sofa are a simple way to bring Christmas into your home and also act as a great source of warmth and comfort on a cold winter’s night. For bedroom furniture, throws and cushions in thick, luxurious materials such as velvet are a great addition.
The final stage to your preparations, decorating your home in advance of the holidays, is something which requires plenty of personal input. What you decide to do and how much you decide to put up is entirely your choice but you may want to consider embracing a set theme or sticking to a particular colour choice for stylistic reasons.
Each year is dictated by its own festive trends so look online and in stores for inspiration. If you want to make decorating a family affair then get the kids involved by setting them tasks such as decorating the tree (for small children) or buying a few new decorations with a set budget (for older children).
To build anticipation to the event, set a date when you’ll put up the decorations and mark it on the calendar. That way everyone in the family will have something to look forward to as the cold weather draws in.
by Joseph Halsall
December 1st, 2013