How To Prepare Your Living Room For Party Guests

Throwing a party doesn’t need to be a stressful planning process, as long as you’re prepared.

By prioritizing rooms, you can focus your attention in spaces where it’s needed.

What should be at the top of the list?

The living room — large open spaces, like a living room, are often where much of the festive action happens.

Get ready, get set and get organized with this living room party preparation checklist.

Party Prep Step No. 1: Cleaning and Organization

Living room spaces often double as playrooms and TV rooms — basically a space where anything goes.

“Spend a few hours de-cluttering or ‘primping’ your room so every corner looks its best,” says professional party thrower Julia Lake.

“Clear off surfaces and dust your shelves so you have space for bites, drinks and decorations.”

Aside from getting your room organized, get yourself organized. Seri Kertzner, aka Little Miss Party Planner, suggests following a checklist so you’re not stressing to get things done.

Plan a timeline needed for this room, such as décor, accessories and other DIY projects.

Party Prep Step No. 2: Choosing a Theme

“A theme is a great way to set a cohesive tone or to cast a color palate,” says Lake.

Since the living room is often the largest space, it’s where your themed décor can really shine.

This year, think about seasonal décor rather than holiday-specific décor.

  • Spray-paint a few pinecones or holly berries in gold and place around the coffee table to spruce things up, says Kertzner.
  • Place monochromatic flowers, such as dark purple dahlias or maroon garden roses, in a clear glass container on end tables or above the fireplace, says Kertzner.
  • Instead of the traditional red and green color scheme, use neutrals with copper accents, tree bark or pheasant feathers, says Lake. “It’s non-traditional but has undertones of subtle elegance with a bit of flash.”

Party Prep Step No. 3: Setting a Mood

Lighting is the easiest way to set a mood at a party. Instead of harsh overhead lighting, work with table lamps and floor lamps at different heights to create a more intimate feel.

“Candles always bring great warmth to a holiday party,” says Kertzner.

Look for candles in festive colors and seasonal scents, but be sure to place in safe, out-of-reach locations.

Party Prep Step No. 4: Arranging Furniture

Be sure to provide enough seating options for guests.

Not all guests will be sitting at once, but be on the safe side and bring in extra folding chairs in addition to your couches and chairs, and decorate them to match the décor.

Arrange seating so guests can have comfortable conversations. Lastly, swap out your everyday pillows for inexpensive seasonal throw pillows.

And keep them until the weather starts to warm!