Trade Secrets: How to prepare your living room for party guests


How does a top interior designer get their home ready for a full house of guests in the run up to Christmas? We asked Kasia Dryer of London-based design firm Living in Space to let us into her trade secrets...

1. If necessary re-arrange your seating temporarily to ensure there is enough space to mingle whilst providing clusters of seating areas for those with weary feet. Substituting armchairs with dining chairs is also helpful, providing more seating whilst keeping floor space as open as possible. Bringing in extra side tables is also handy so your guests can set down their drinks whenever needed.

2. Upholstered cubes and ottomans are also an excellent way to provide extra seating during a large gathering, whatever the time of year.

3. Christmas decorations are key and there are many stylish ways to execute them. Vases filled with baubles, subtly fairy lights and bouquets of evergreen foliage all add those festive touches any Christmas party needs.


4. Having a focal point is key to any party. At Christmas time the obvious candidate is the tree; if it has a colour scheme you can use that for other accents throughout to create a theme which can then be extended to any other areas being used whilst entertaining, such as the kitchen, hall and even the cloakroom.

5. If you’re fortunate enough to have a working fireplace, use it! If not, clusters of candles and lanterns can be used instead to create the perfect ambience for a cosy and festive get-together.


6. Investing in a statement cabinet not only contributes to a beautiful interior, but can be used to store extra glasses so they are on hand for parties. It can also prove handy for keeping nibbles on.

7. clearing a shelf or a bookcase means it can be used as a bar, allowing you or your guests to top up drinks without endless trips to the kitchen.

8. If kids are on the guest list, providing them with materials to make their own Christmas decorations such as bunting, paper-chains and DIY snowmen will keep them highly entertained.


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Emily Peck, Editor

View all posts by Emily Peck, Editor