When it comes to hosting the holidays, no apartment – or house, for that matter – ever feels big enough. From where you’re going to put everyone’s coats to where they’re all going to sit, it’s an exercise in serious problem-solving. The good news is, we’ve got some pretty great tricks and tips for hosting the holidays in a small space. After all, with more than 1,200 apartments in Oak Park, Chicago, River Forest and Forest Park, you might say we’re kind of experts on this whole apartment living thing.
Tips for Hosting the Holidays with Limited Space
Use Space Wisely
You have more space than you realize, it’s just currently being taken up by stuff you use every day. For your holiday party, store all non-essential furniture in the bedroom, a closet, or even at a friend or neighbor’s apartment. Just make sure you have enough seating for guests. Bring out your vanity stool and an office chair for extra seating, and keep coffee tables and all flat surfaces free of clutter for drinks and plates. If your living room is larger than your dining room, and you’re planning a sit-down holiday dinner, swap the furniture to make room for a longer table and chairs.
Ditch the Decorations
While it might seem counterintuitive to creating a festive holiday feel, you’ll want to pare down your decorating. That doesn’t mean your apartment has to be void of Christmas cheer. For instance, you can still create holiday spirit without a tree by using garland or greenery and lights around windows and doors. You’ll also want to free up counter space by stowing away unnecessary appliances, and store every-day decorative items, such as photos, knick-knacks, decorative pillows and throw blankets, in closets or under the bed.
Keep the Menu Simple
If your kitchen is small, you’ll want to do as much cooking ahead of time as possible. For instance, consider making your desserts the day before, or, even better, make it a potluck and ask guests to bring a dish to share. Another trick to stall guests while you’re waiting for items to cook in the oven is to serve a cold appetizer or salad first. No space for a fully-stocked bar? Create a specialty cocktail with a virgin alternative that you can serve from a punch bowl or pitcher, or limit drinks choices to a single red and white wine, one type of beer and one non-alcoholic option.
Think Outside the Box, er, the Apartment
Entertaining in a small space requires some creativity, so don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Without the books and framed photos, your bookshelf can double as a bar, and your ottoman can work as an extra chair. To limit clutter inside your Oak Park or Chicago apartment, place your coat rack and a boot tray in the hallway. When you run out of room in the fridge, it’s cold enough outside to store refrigerated items and drinks on your apartment balcony. The trick is to look at your home with a fresh set of eyes, and re-purpose your space to fit your needs.
Still Think You Need a Bigger Apartment?
There’s no denying that sometimes, bigger really is better. If you’re ready to move out of your apartment and into one with extra bedrooms or more square footage, we have literally thousands of apartments to choose from in Oak Park, Chicago, River Forest and Forest Park. You can search available apartments online, or call our leasing office at (833) 896-9936.
Happy Apartment Hunting & Happy Holidays!