From birthdays to anniversaries, there are several occasions in your life to celebrate. If you’re planning a party, you’re probably overwhelmed with particulars, including the guest list or how many appetizers or bottles of wine to purchase. However, there is another aspect you might overlook, but shouldn’t: the potential for spills, accidents and stains on your carpeting and upholstered furniture. It only takes a few minutes and a small budget to ensure no unfortunate party mementos are found on your carpet or couch.
Before the Party
A few days before the party, have your rugs and upholstery professionally cleaned. If this isn’t on your “to-do” list, consider it for another reason besides creating a pleasant home atmosphere. Psychologically, if the guests see your rugs and carpet are immaculate, they’re more likely to remain thoughtful with their glass of wine or punch.
Cover What You Want Protected
Chances are, your carpeting and upholstered furniture was expensive. It makes sense you want to protect that investment. It may seem like a needless expense, but it’s wise to invest in a few inexpensive area rugs and couch covers. Before the party begins, take the rugs and place them in high-traffic areas. Protect your couches, chairs and anything that’s upholstered with a decorative throw or fitted cover. It’s an investment, but a minimal one when you consider the money necessary to replace your living room carpet.
Establish “Do Not Enter” Zones
You might be torn between creating a welcoming atmosphere for your guests, and keeping your carpet and upholstered furniture safe. If you’re more concerned with the latter, consider keeping your guests out of certain rooms. For example, if you have a furnished basement or a landscaped backyard, consider hosting your gathering there instead. If you’ve recently installed new carpet in the back den, don’t feel embarrassed to ask guests to steer clear or leave their drinks and shoes at the entrance.
The absence of better options often forces guests to set their drink or plate on any available surface. Don’t be surprised when you see plates and half-empty glasses piled on your expensive furniture. Protect your investments by purchasing inexpensive folding tables. If you’re able to, plan ahead and look for tables at yard sales or secondhand stores. Before the party, set up the tables in strategic places around the home, such as near your television stand, couches or anywhere people congregate.
As the party goes on, don’t be ashamed to remind guests about their drinks and plates. For example, let your Aunt Sally know you don’t want her half-empty wine glass on the living room window sill. Your best friend might not realize the dangers associated with her dancing on your expensive carpet, holding a drink. The key to keeping everyone at the party happy and your carpet safe is to remain friendly and never scold anyone.
Perform Frequent Walk-Throughs
As the party winds down, make several passes through your home. Grab a garbage bag and throw away any half-empty plastic cups or any partially consumed food. If the party is expansive, ask a friend or family member to keep the garbage under control. Not only do these walk-throughs protect your carpet and furniture from stains, they make the post-party clean-up faster.
Above all, don’t forget to enjoy yourself during the party. If you’re overwhelmed by the prospect of your closest friends and family trampling your carpet or staining your couch, consider a different venue. It’s not worth the convenience and savings of hosting a party at home if you’re can’t relax and enjoy the festivities.
About the Author: Simone Albertson is a blogger and professional party planner. Simone recently called upon the professionals at COIT Cleaning after hosting her son’s birthday party. If your carpets needs a touch-up, visit www.coit.com.