10 Guest Bedroom Essentials

I remember when we lived in an apartment, I would dream about having a real guest bedroom to decorate someday. Then, when we bought our first home a few years ago, we ended up with three! One is being turned into a nursery very soon, but since we have ample room we find ourselves hosting overnight guests on a pretty regular basis. As such, I decided my 2014 post on 7 Guest Bedroom Essentials was in for a little update! Read on to see my new list of tips for how to put together a welcoming guest bedroom.

Idylwyld Project Guest Bedroom

1. Layered blankets

No matter what season it is, give your guests a variety of blankets to choose from. My go-to bed bedding combination is a duvet, a lightweight quilt and a throw blanket. Similarly, it's a good idea to have two sets of pillows to layer on a bed -- two on the softer side and two slightly firmer. I do the same thing on our bed because I like a soft pillow whereas my husband prefers something firmer. Give your guests some options to make them feel right at home!

2. Wifi password

One of the first things I want to do after spending long hours on the road is to plug my electronics in and check my email. Make it easy for your guests by sharing your home's wifi password with this cute printable I designed! It's kind of crazy, but this little printable has been repinned over 100K times on Pinterest. Can you believe it? Grab your copy below or shop my other printable designs here

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FREE WIFI PASSWORD PRINT!

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3. Cozy chair

If you have the space, it's always great to add some comfortable seating to your guest bedroom! We have a small settee across from the foot of the bed in ours, but an upholstered chair in a corner is a great option too. It gives guests a place to sit other than the bed and makes the whole room feel warmer and more inviting.

4. Spare set of house keys

We've hosted a lot of guests in the two and a half years we've owned our house. For guests staying for a longer visit or just crashing while they are in town for an event, we like to leave out a spare key. It gives our guests a little more autonomy with coming and going as they need to and just makes things easier! We have ours on a pretty leather tassel keychain I made so it's easy to spot!

5. Fresh towels

This one seems obvious, but there's nothing worse than realizing you forgot to do that load of laundry right when your guest wants to take a shower. Unfortunately, I know this from experience-- sorry, Ella! In the bustle of getting ready for houseguests, it's easy to forget something but make sure you have a couple nice, freshly laundered towels ready for when they arrive! I usually stack them in a pile on the foot of the bed or on the chair/settee.

6. Snacks

I always like to have some snack food at the ready when I have guests coming. My guests are always welcome to what's in the refrigerator, but guests feel more comfortable helping themselves to snacks that are already out and ready for munching. I keep a bowl of granola bars and crackers stocked in our kitchen but if you really want to make a good impression, a small tray with a carafe, drinking glass and a few snacks right in the guest bedroom is a really nice detail!

7. Reading material

I always have a supply of magazines like Southern Living and Better Homes and Gardens, and I will usually leave a few of the current issues out when I know guests are coming over. I use hardcover and vintage books all around our house for styling, but I recently started keeping my collection of paperbacks in our guest bedroom too. This gives guests something to do if you are busy milling about the house preparing for a family gathering or celebration!

8. Wastebasket

Confession, we don't currently have a waste basket in our guest room but it's something I keep meaning to add to my shopping list! There's a lot of small trash that can be created when you're traveling and it's always more convenient when your guests don't have to go looking for a spot to throw something away. I like decorative wastebaskets with removable liners, like this one

9. Mirror

We used to have a mirror in our guest room, but things in our house are always moving around and now I'm on the hunt for a nice, affordable floor mirror to put next to the closet. Yes, there's the bathroom but it's a nice touch to give guests a spot to check their outfit or touch up their makeup before they leave the room. Plus, a pretty mirror can add so much light and energy to a space! Hang a smaller one over a dresser or desk, or lean a tall mirror up against the wall like I plan to do. 

10. Scented linen spray

In addition to washing all the bedding before I'm expecting a house guest, I like to add an extra boost of freshness when I'm making the bed with a naturally scented linen spray. You can definitely buy a premade spray, but I've started incorporating essential oils into my wellness and housekeeping routines over the last year or so and room sprays are so easy to whip up! I keep one in our room too to add some extra freshness to our bedding in between washes. I'll be sharing the DIY later this week!

What do you do to prep for house guests?

Comment below or on Instagram to share your tips! I love hosting friends and family in our home and I'm always looking for new ways to make things special for their visit!

7 Guest Room Essentials

2018 Update: In honor of my FREE Wifi Password printable hitting 145k engagements on Pinterest, I've refreshed this blog post adding 3 more tips for outfitting a stylish and comfortable room for your guests. Click here to read the updated post and grab your copy!

2016 Update: My FREE "The Wifi Password is..." Printable now has over 32,000 repins on Pinterest! Be sure to read to the end of this post for how to download your free copy!

Now that we are past Thanksgiving, the holidays will be here before we know it! I love getting to see friends and family members who live far away during this time of year, and even though our current apartment is only one bedroom, I love hosting guests! For Thanksgiving, my best friend Lindsay and her boyfriend, James stayed with us for two nights. This time they had to settle for the pull-out sofa bed but I am dreaming of the day when we have a proper Guest Bedroom in our home! 

For those of you who will be hosting out-of-town guests this month, I am sharing my top 7 guest room essentials! 

1. Fun wall art - A room without art screams "spare room". Upgrade the cozy factor with some cute wall decor. It doesn't have to be expensive! Etsy is a great resource for art prints, like this one from my shop! My hand lettered print makes a sophisticated statement, but the Beauty and the Beast reference is sure to give your guests a chuckle! This printable is available as an instant download through my Etsy shop, so it's the perfect last minute addition to your decor!

2. Cozy blankets - I'm always freezing so I love when the person who's hosting me leaves lots of extra throw blankets around! There are so many beautiful throw options around, from knit to faux fur to fleece. 

3. Candles - I'm a big fan of candles when I'm entertaining. Nothing warms up a space like the soft flickering light of a candle and I love walking into a room with a clean, inviting scent. This Stella & Dot candle has a fig, white tea and peach scent and comes in this adorable printed tin! (This would make an excellent Christmas gift too!)

4. Accent chair - When the day comes that we DO have a guest room to furnish, I will be keeping my eye out for a comfy little chair to put in the corner. It will give guests a place to sit (other than the bed!) and will add a dash of style to the room! 

5. Wifi - One of the first things I want to do after spending long hours on the road is to plug my electronics in and check my email. Make it easy for your guests by sharing your home's wifi password with this cute printable I designed! 

Enter your email address below to access your FREE DOWNLOAD of my "The Wifi Password is..." Art Print! Just fill in your info, press submit and a message with the link to your free printable will automatically appear below. 

Access your FREE DOWNLOAD of my "The Wifi Password is..." Art Print by joining the SSDC email list!

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6. Snacks - I always like to have some snack food at the ready when I have guests coming. My guests are always welcome to what's in the refrigerator, but guests feel more comfortable helping themselves to snacks that are already out and ready for munching. 

7. Reading material -  I always have a supply of magazines like Southern Living, Better Homes and Gardens and Martha Stewart Home, and I will usually leave a few of the current issues out when I know guests are coming over. This gives them something to do if you are busy milling about the house preparing for a family gathering or celebration!

 

Custom Designs & Fun Wedding Mad Lib

I love creating custom designs, especially when I get the chance to create something for a friend! I met Grace about 5 or 6 years ago through scrapbooking . As she was planning her wedding this summer, she contacted me about creating some custom paper goods for her rehearsal dinner that fit her wedding colors and theme. I had a great time creating a rehearsal dinner invitation, wedding day schedule, phone tree, mad lib and thank you card for her to give to her wedding party and family. 

Stevie Storck Design Co - Grace's Custom Designs

You can now purchase one of the designs I created for Grace through Young Tradition Studio. This fun wedding mad lib is available as an Instant Download! It's a great last minute addition to your wedding fun. Pass it out at your rehearsal dinner like Grace did, or leave a stack on every table at your reception! 

And I have another great offer for you! For a limited time only, if you sign up for the Stevie Storck Design Co. Newsletter, I will personally send you a coupon for 50% off any Instant Download item in my Etsy shop, Young Tradition StudioThis offer is limited to the first 10 newsletter subscribers, so be sure to submit your sign up now!



Announcing... Stevie Storck Design Co. !

Last month, I wrote about a project that I've been working on. Something that I'm really passionate about and that has been my complete focus for the last 3-4 months. This is it! Welcome to my new website, which will be the new home of my blog and also the platform for my new business Stevie Storck Design Co.! I just got the paperwork back from the state of PA last week and I've got to tell you, it feels good to be OFFICIAL! 

Stevie Storck Design Co. is the culmination of my past five years of education and experience. My primary focus will be interior design and decorating moving forward, but I am excited to offer a variety of services including custom design and event styling. I will still be creating designs for my Etsy shop, Young Tradition Studio and in the next year, I plan to launch an online boutique of unique home decor items and curated vintage finds. I invite you to explore my new website to learn more about my design services! 

I also have a lot of new plans for this blog! I intend to start posting much more regularly, on topics like interior design, party planning, decorating and DIY projects. I will even be featuring some guest bloggers who I can't wait to introduce you to! Even though this new website is geared towards my design business, I will continue to share updates about my life and sometimes write about my hobbies outside of design. This is something that I've done since I started this blog in 2011 and after much thought I have decided that it is not something I want to change. Some people think there needs to be a black and white line between our professional and personal selves, but for me, that doesn't feel genuine. Whether you are a friend, a reader, or a potential client, I want you to know me as my authentic self and I want to get to know YOU in the same context. 

So to my past readers who have followed my blog to this new site, thank you for your time, your patience with my blogging hiatus and your continued support. To those of you just joining us, I hope that my reimagined blog is a source of inspiration and positivity for you, both in design and in life. I can't wait to share this new journey with you! 

 

Q&A

Happy Thursday everyone! I've compiled a list of questions that I am asked a lot through my blog, my Etsy shop and in my daily life. Hopefully you'll learn a little something about me!

Q: Is Stevie your real name? 

No, Stevie isn't short for Stephanie and no, my Dad's name isn't Steven. But my Dad is a big Fleetwood Mac fan and that's why he named me Stevie, after the lead singer Stevie Nicks. As a kid, it did bother me that I could never find my name in those racks of pre-personalized keychains they sell at the beach and that I literally went an entire year being called Steven by my elderly health teacher who just got more confused every time I tried to correct him. But now, I really like having a unique name and I'm glad my parents didn't play it safe and just name me Stephanie.

Q: You've said you are addicted downloading new fonts, do you have a favorite?

I can sit for hours browsing and downloading new fonts. Since I mostly use free fonts, some of these turn out to be winners and some of them don't. My favorite free fonts are always changing, but Canter, Janda Stylish Script and Walkway  are all good ones. My favorite font that I've purchased right now is Asterism by Great Lakes Lettering.

Q: Did you go to school for design?

Yes, I spent one year at La Roche College in the Interior Design program before transferring and completing my Bachelor of Interior Architecture degree at Chatham University. A lot of people ask the difference between interior design, interior architecture and decorating. I wrote a post about this called "Why Interior Design is more than Decorating".

Q: What are your hobbies other than design?

My biggest hobby going through school was music. I was a tuba player with the Marching, Concert and Symphonic bands but my real passion was singing Alto in Concert Choir. I love music so much that I almost went to school for Music Education instead of design. While I know I made the right decision for me, I still get sad sometimes and wish that I had Hermione Granger's time turner so I could have two careers! In the last couple of years, I've also picked up the Mandolin and find a lot of enjoyment playing and singing with Anthony (who plays bass and guitar).

Since I've graduated college, I've picked up a few more hobbies. Recently, I've been reading a lot more -- in May of 2014, I read 6 books! I've also gotten really into meal planning and trying new recipes lately, which you might have noticed if you follow me on Pinterest. I have 3 different cooking boards, "Recipes to Try", "This Week's Menu" and "Tried and True Recipes".  I'm also currently taking a Ceramics class! Yeah, I have a lot of hobbies...

Q: What is your favorite color?

My favorite color is white. Which, according to some gossip magazine, is also Kate Middleton's favorite color! I have the biggest girl crush on Kate Middleton. I made all of my friends sleep in the lounge of our dorm room so we could wake up at 4:00am to watch the Royal Wedding. I think I was the only one who watched the entire thing without drifting back to sleep.

Q: You say you're from Central PA, does that mean you are Amish?

This is a very common assumption. There's a phrase out there that Pennsylvania is Pittsburgh and Philadelphia with Alabama in the middle, and my story only reinforces that idea. No, I am not Amish but I grew up about as close to Amish as an "English" (what the Amish call us) person can be. I grew up on a dairy farm in a rural community outside of Delta, PA. There are probably another half dozen farms within 2 miles of my parents house and most of them are owned and operated by Amish families. Many people think of the Amish as a secluded community that doesn't interact with modern society, but at least in the small towns around where I am from, the Amish and English communities are very connected.

Q: When and why did you start blogging?

I started blogging in the summer of 2011 when Anthony and I were preparing to move into our first apartment together. I originally just wanted to keep a record of the DIY projects I was doing for our first home together. As our lives have changed, my blog has changed as well. I write about everything from newlywed life and new recipes I am trying to home decor tips and craft projects I am working on.

Q: How did you get started with Etsy and grow your stationery business?

I started my Etsy shop, Young Tradition Studio in February of 2013 at the suggestion of my older sister. You can read more on my Etsy shop's About Page. Growing it has been more of a experiment than an exact science, and I have a lot that I still want to change and improve. For me, the key to running a successful Etsy business is consistency and customer service. I've been able to create a "signature style" in my offerings on Etsy, so even if I am not offering a specific item that a customer is looking for, I will often have people request a custom design from me just because they like the other items in my shop. Customer service is also very important.  I do my best to respond to customers the same day that they contact me and I also shy away from generic responses. For me it is easy to be personable with my customers because they are contacting me for help with an exciting life event, like a marriage, baby shower or birthday party. As someone who LOVES weddings and babies, I get genuinely excited for all of my customers and feel so flattered that they have chosen me to help them celebrate their milestones.

Q: How did you meet your husband?

Anthony and I met in 2003, on the first day of seventh grade. We had all of the same classes, including homeroom together. It wasn't until our sophomore year of high school that our friendship turned into something more, but we've never looked back since then. <3

Q: What was it like to grow up on a farm?

Growing up on a farm and being a member or 4-H was all I knew as a kid. It wasn't until more recently that I realized just how unique of a childhood I had compared to the majority of people my age. To us, summer meant hay season and 4-H shows, not relaxing at the beach. In fact, my family didn't take a week-long trip to the beach until after we sold the dairy cows in 2004 - we just couldn't be away from the farm for that long. I missed a week of school each fall for the local fair, spending days taking care of our animals and preparing for the show and night sleeping on cots in the barn. We had a lot of fun back then. I remember one night at the Solanco Fair, we waited until my friend Kyle was asleep on his cot, before carrying him (cot and all) outside to a grassy spot in between barns and leaving him there. I remember playing cards in the stalls with Carlyn, using my lounging cow's belly as an impromptu card table. I remember being sweaty and covered in cow hair when we were grooming our cows for the show and how annoyed my cows got when I tried to clean their ears with baby oil. It was an awesome childhood. My Dad is still farming, growing crops and raising a small herd of beef cattle, but sometimes I still miss having the dairy cows around. Farming will always be a huge part of my life and even though Anthony and I aren't planning to become farmers, I hope that we can share some of these same experiences with our future children down the road.

Q: What's your favorite interior design style?

I always say that I am a schizophrenic when it comes to design styles -- I have so many different design personalities! I'm definitely eclectic, but I would define my current style as Rustic Traditional with accents of Midcentury Modern.

Q: Do you offer interior design services?

I am currently offering Digital Design Services and Color Consulting through this website, but I plan on expanding my services soon! (Update: I now offer Interior Design and Decorating services through StevieStorck.com!

Q: Best book you've read recently?

I recently read two books by Rainbow Rowell, Fangirl and Attachments and thought both were FANTASTIC! She has another book, Eleanor & Park that is on my reading list and a new book called Landline that is coming out this summer. I get most of my reading inspiration from Janssen at Everyday Reading and through my friends on GoodReads.com.

Q: Favorite movie?

Walk the Line. I want to be June Carter AND Reese Witherspoon. Amazing movie.


Have more questions for me? Leave your question as a comment and I will respond!