Let’s talk about a typical scenario. We plan parties for weeks, the menu, the wine, the friends, the fun. I don’t know about everyone else..but I always forget about the cleaning part! I do have to say that I have my routine down now and I wanted to share it with everyone! Here is how to get your house party-ready in one hour or less. *Your results may vary depending on your space..I wrote this for someone who may have a little more space with a porch, etc*.
The first thing you want to focus your attention to is all of the areas where you think your guests will mingle.
Front Door/Entry Way: I like to start by sweeping and “swiffering” my entry way. This is also where we dump all of our mail so I organize the mail clutter and put all of the mail away.
If you have a porch I recommend going outside and sweeping off the dirt and debris that can gather on a porch.
I will sometimes buy a new welcome mat that looks more inviting or I will spray off the old one that we have just to give it a fresh new look.
Re-arrange plants if you have any so they look nice.
While you have the broom out, look up at the ceiling and sweep away any cobwebs you may find. You may not think they are a big deal..but once guests arrive I always look up at them like “Ugh, if I just would of got rid of them”
If you have a glass front door, take the time to get out the glass cleaner and make it look shiny!
I also like to see if I have any door decorations or something that can make my place look even more inviting!
Get Rid of Clutter: Clutter and mingling do not combine well! Put all of your clutter away and open up your spaces and tabletops so guests believe it looks like you are ready to entertain!
Clean those bathrooms: I don’t know if it’s just me but I love using the bathroom at someone else’s house. I feel like it’s the one area where people are going to go to be alone with their thoughts (clearly) so I feel like this is the one place where people really “judge”.
Clean up any obvious dirty areas in the bathroom with a household cleaner and a paper towel or clean rag.
Apply toilet cleaner to the toilet and wipe out with a toilet brush. I use the scrubbing bubbles disposable ones! I am grossed out by toilet brushes.
Use a damp towel to wipe the floor. I am guilty of using the towel I just dried myself off with from the shower and will throw the towel in the dirty laundry.
Clean your mirrors! I use windex and coffee filters to get a really shiny clean.
Clear your counters of clutter. I like to tuck toiletries that my guests won’t need to use or see in a basket and you can store this behind your shower curtain in the tub but people have been known to peek behind the shower curtain. I will store them under the bed which sounds weird but they are in one basket and nobody will be able to see them and you can easily put them back when the party is over.
Now, I know I’m just being petty but I always have a fresh just washed hand towel and I make sure my soap dispenser is full and wiped off.
Floors in the home: Make sure that the floors in your house, especially where your guests will be mingling are clean.
Vacuum high traffic areas.
I like to use a dust mop (like a Swiffer) and a steam mop on my non-carpeted floors.
Now we need to discuss the main areas that your guests will be entertained in.
Kitchen priorities: Make sure you do any “deep-cleaning” in your kitchen in the days leading up to your party. It is the deep cleaning that can eat up an entire day. If you are going to be welcoming guests within the hour there are a few things you can do to get ready.
Discard leftovers and expired food in your fridge.
Move non-essential items for that night to the back such as milk to make room for party food.
Use a household cleaner and a rag or paper towels to give your countertops a quick sparkle.
This may be a no-brainer..but take out the trash! I also like to wipe off the garbage can with a disinfectant just to make sure it isn’t covered in leftovers..
Since we are talking about trash..: Emptying other trash in the house makes total sense and can give your space a fresh feel.
Scan your house for trash and gather it up.
Empty all trash cans in the house, kitchen, bathrooms, den, or anywhere guests may wander.
Put all new liners in each can.
Spray with disinfectant or air freshener.
Move all trash to an outside receptacle so people will not trip over any trash and you will not have any stinky trash laying around your house!
Finally, Stage your party area: Straighten up your public space furniture. Fluff couch pillows, etc.
Fold all of your throws and put them away. We keep ours in a cute basket.
Arrange books and magazines neatly. I think it’s fun to have nice “coffee table” books as they make great conversation starters.
Make sure you have space for all of your guests outerwear, shoes, etc. I will make sure I have a rug or something similar placed for people to put shoes and if it’s winter time I like to have a laundry basket available to gather gloves, hats, purses and other similar items all in one place.
Light some candles and buy some fresh flowers. It’s the little things that make all the difference!
Being organized and efficient in your cleaning plan will help you pull off a great party and make sure your space looks great as well! It’s up to you to welcome guests with a sparkling attitude after all. 😉
What are your favorite quick cleaning tips?