It is the beginning of October and we’re already seeing “Christmas” in all the stores. What happened to all the time we had to get the house ready for the holidays? But don’t dwell on yesterday – it’s gone and tomorrow isn’t quite here, which leaves us with TODAY.
So here’s a suggested TODAY “to-do” list to help you keep time with the time you have left:
- If you are considering renovations such as kitchen, bath or any major construction, and you have not begun, don’t expect to be finished for this holiday season. Get started, but aim for spring completion so you can prepare appropriately.
- Experienced professionals (designers, architects, licensed contractors) can help you expedite your project as well as offer options you not have known existed.
- Make sure all contracted sources put in writing the expected time frame for completion or delivery. Start now interviewing the team and shop for items needed, but be flexible (remember the cheapest price may not be the best).
- Establish realistic budget parameters and if it’s a big project, explore avenues for financing, allowing time for approvals. If you’re planning to “do it yourself”, make a realistic schedule for your smaller projects, and then add for contingencies.
- Make time to clean up the clutter, throw out stuff, and organize your space before you begin. It will go faster during the completion phase. (If there’s a dumpster on site, use it, or if need be, get one!)
Some more tips to save time and money:
- When decorating public spaces, (living room, dining room, den and foyer) start with area rugs to help you define space, pattern, and color. Create a new look, even if you’re keeping “oldies but goodies.”
- When decorating bedrooms, start with the bedding (often sold with coordinating draperies) to establish wall and carpet color. Try to stay monochromatic (1 color family) on walls and floors, especially if you like to change from winter velvet to summer patchwork. New furniture may or may not be in the immediate plan, but make sure your new purchases will stand the test of time.
- When decorating rooms for kids, remember, they grow and their rooms should grow with them. Make major purchases carefully and with an eye to tomorrow so you won’t have to spend time and money looking for new furniture in a few years.
- Make your choices in a timely manner – but don’t be an impulse shopper. Choose carefully since what’s “in” today may be “out” tomorrow. If you want to be a little funky, do it with accessories that can be easily or inexpensively changed if you grow tired of them.
Enjoy the process of decorating. It really can be fun, enriching and a worthwhile use of your time. You’ll be less stressed if you make a plan and a budget and you have the years ahead to recoup the rewards of your efforts.