The 24-Day Checklist To Get Your Home Ready for Christmas

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! But when you’re hosting friends and family, it’s also a lot of hard work. To avoid a festive meltdown (we’ve all been there), start your Christmas prep now with our calendar countdown. No stress or last-minute panic, just fun and feasting on all that lovely festive food. Here’s how to get organised in 10 simple steps…

24 Days To Go: Send Christmas Cards



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You’re making a list, you’re checking it twice… And whether you’ve been naughty or nice, there’s no escaping the tedious task of sending Christmas cards. Start early, and you can spread the workload by writing a few cards every night. Our tip? Make a master list, save it on your phone, and then you won’t have to do it again next year. Add a little party season glamour to your cards with a metallic pen

20 Days To Go: Declutter the House



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Beautiful homes are clutter-free. Take a look around: Could anything be stashed in the garage or loft to free up space for guests? Recycle magazines and newspapers, and donate old toys, books and trinkets to your local charity shop.

Fastest way to tidy up? Invest in some seriously handy storage and you can pack away those non-essentials until after Christmas. A wicker hamper, a hollow ottoman or stack of vintage suitcases in the sitting room will do double duty as both storage and style statement.

18 Days To Go: Buy and Wrap Presents

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It’s much easier to stick to a budget if you buy the presents well ahead. And – bonus! – with weeks still to go you’ll have time to get a little creative with your wrapping. Going the extra mile with gift-wrapping makes all the difference, so show off your skills with fancy paper, bows, ribbons, glitter, tags and maybe even a sprig of holly. Make sure all your supplies are colour-coordinated so you can mix, match and make a stunning display under the Christmas tree!

16 Days To Go: Get the Guestroom Ready



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If guests are coming to stay, there’s only one thing for it: You’re going to have to turn that sad spare room into a warm and welcoming haven. Tidy, clean, then try an interior designer’s trick – make the bed the centrepiece, with fabulous new bedlinen, a faux-fur throw and a sparkly cushion or two. Add a swanky lamp for ambience then sit back and wait for the compliments.

14 Days To Go: Add Christmas Kerb Appeal



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There’s one on every street. The house that’s covered in so many Christmas lights it can be seen from space. Nailing an LED Santa and reindeer to the roof certainly sends a fun message, but if you’d prefer something a little more subtle, there are plenty of options that are a tad more discreet.

A traditional wreath on the front door is easy, chic and can be used year after year. Or why not wrap outdoor fairy lights around trees, hedges or potted plants for a magical glow? 

12 Days To Go: Decorate the Tree



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It’s not Christmas until the decorations go up! Keep things simple with a few key pieces: A garland of holly and ivy looks lovely on the mantelpiece, alongside personalised stockings for all the family.

Whatever your colour palette – Scandi red, modern silver and white, traditional gold – decorating the tree in a single theme has real impact. And if you don’t want to step on pine needles well into January, splash out on one of the latest faux trees.

10 Days To Go: Prep the Kitchen



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It’s the hub and heart of the home, so a little TLC now will keep the kitchen running smoothly over Christmas. Check the cupboards: Bin anything past its use-by date and donate unwanted items to the local food bank.

Clear the worktops of any rarely-used kitchen appliances, antibac the fridge and top up the ice cube trays in the freezer. Dig out Christmas kit, from carving knives to the best crystal and stash it all in one place for easy access.

7 Days To Go: Fill Your Home With Fragrance

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Welcome guests into your home with a waft of warming fragrance. Think festive candles scented with mandarin, cinnamon and clove, or frosty notes of pine and eucalyptus like a walk in a snowy forest. Add a reed diffuser to the hallway – with a week to go, there’s time for it to impregnate the whole house with the homely scent of Christmas.

5 Days To Go: Start the Celebrations



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A spot of party prep now means you’re ready for anything, whether it’s super-sophisticated cocktails with the neighbours or an impromptu knees-up with the family. Make a festive playlist so the music is always only one click away. Have a few extra cards and posh chocs to hand in case of surprise guests, and create a drinks station with a vintage trolley. Fill it with bottles of fizz, pitchers of mulled wine and soft drinks and let guests help themselves. Merry Christmas!

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