Holiday Guide: The Ultimate Last-Minute Christmas Checklist

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Flickr Photo by Scott Feldstein

Are you ready to face Christmas cleaning disasters? Are all of your gifts wrapped and ready to go? Is the front door decorated and prepared to welcome guests? During the holidays, everything is in hyperdrive. With so much going on, it can be easy to forget what is ready, and what still needs some work. So, to make sure your holiday runs smoothly, we put together this ultimate Christmas checklist of everything from entertaining tips to holiday crafts. Feel free to check it twice...we know we'll have to!

Christmas Entertaining Ideas
Christmas parties are all about creating the perfect holiday atmosphere. Here are some great entertaining ideas for both hostesses and guests alike.
- Believe it or not, you can throw a cocktail party for $50 - here's how!
- Entertaining for a crowd? Be sure to read this first.
- Are you throwing a party at the last-minute? Here are some must-see tips.
- Your front door is the first thing guests will see, so you need to decorate it. Get inspiration from these 11 amazing designs.
- Guests will always gather around an open fire, so check out these 12 fantastic decorating ideas to make sure your mantel is ready for the attention.
- Still need some last-minute decor, gifts or cards? Check out these 19 fabulously free printables.
- Are you buying an artificial tree to make post-party and post-holiday cleaning easier? Look at these tips first.
- Look at these need to know facts about preparing your guest room before your family comes a-knocking.
- Do you know the essentials for a well-stocked bar? Make sure you have them before throwing your holiday shindig.
- Still search for decoration inspiration? Check out our holiday decor and show us yours.

Christmas Tablescape Ideas
Christmas isn't just about presents, the dinner being served and the table it's being served on are hugely important too. Whether you are looking for inspiration or finishing touches, these links below will help you create a fabulous table setting for the evening.
- Make your table look just as gorgeous as your food with these 11 Christmas table setting ideas.
- Still need help with a centerpiece? Check out these 11 fantastic floral ideas.
- Are you a creative person? Try out one of these 12 inventive centerpieces you've never seen before.
- A great alternative to buying placemats is to make your own. It's fun and budget friendly.
- For an artsy accent to your table setting, take a look at these colorful napkin rings made from paper.
- Napkin folds are a great last-second stress reliever to hide from relatives during the busy holiday. Try out this fabulous rose fold, an elegant kimono fold, a traditional bishop's hat fold, or advent-inspired candle fold.

Gift Guides
Whether you need one extra-special secret Santa gift or an entire array of presents for your family, these ideas will have everyone looking at you in awe.
- Need some gifts on the fly? Here are a few easy but still impressive last-minute homemade gifts.
- Here are 17 wonderful gift ideas for the stylish women in your life.
- Check out these 12 fantastic gift ideas for the man in your life.
- Are you going to a holiday party? Be sure to look at these 13 fantastic hostess gifts before it's too late.
- Everyone's forgotten to buy a present at some point, but not everyone had this list of 20 easy last-minute gifts that recipients will still adore.
- Shopping for holiday plants? Check out this guide before buying any for yourself or friends.
- All of our favorite stores run on special holiday hours...midnight shopping trip, anyone?
- Baked goods are great presents during the holidays, so use one of these 10 free printables to turn those treats into gifts.

Gift Wrap Ideas
You always want your present to stand out from the crowd, and forgoing store-bought wrapping paper for homemade styles is one great way to do that.
- Wrap a gift in homemade fabric for an idea that's twice as cute!
- Why not sew a sentimental message on to your wrapping paper?
- Not all Christmas embellishments need to red, green or metallic. These adorable flowery embellishments will dress up any present.
- Confetti is not just for New Year's Eve, you can use it to glam up presents too.
- Make your gifts sing with this musical gift wrap idea.
- Believe it or not, you can turn a shopping bag into one amazing sheet of wrapping paper.

Christmas Crafts
We love crafting! Whether you need a few last-minute ornaments, a colorful wreath for your door or just want something for the family to make together, these crafts will get you in the holiday spirit.
- These paper Christmas trees would make adorable ornaments or a fun and easy centerpiece.
- These paper flower ornaments look just like ribbon candy...yum!
- Need a small gift box? Try making one out of paint swatches.
- Paper snowflakes are a great craft to do with the family! Once you're done, string them along to make a garland.
- These felt Christmas lights are bright and cheery ornaments for the tree.
- Turn any old ornament into a holiday masterpiece using nail polish!
- These felt trees are understated, stylish, and perfect for the mantel.
- Use glitter to glam up an ornament fast.
- This heart garland is an easy and unique Christmas adornment.
- Though incredibly simple, this mason jar snow globe is hugely impressive.
- Make beautiful ornaments using only a marker.
- Still need a wreath for the fireplace or front door? Make one using ornaments.
- Glittered pinecones are instant decor for a side table or centerpiece.

Holiday Cleaning Tips
With so many people around, holiday cleaning is inevitable, but it doesn't have to pain-inducing. Check out our tips to help make your holiday run smoothly.
- From pine needles to tinsel to eggnog, when the holidays come they bring a few disasters with them. Check out these tips to keep the crisis at bay.
- Organize your wrapping supplies in a...shoe organizer?
- Food shopping for a crowd can be stressful, but keeping a super comprehensive shopping list will help you stay calm.
- If you're cooking on a tiny countertop, try some of these easy tips for making more space.
- After the meal is over, make sure you store your fine chine properly.
- When dinner is over and it is time to clean the dishes, make sure these seven things do not go inside the dishwasher by mistake.
- To make sure your wine is Christmas ready, store it properly by following these easy tips.
- Is your closet coat friendly? Make sure it's organized the right way so guests have room to hang their winter jackets.
- You don't want to be stuck with hours worth of dishes to clean, so make sure you use your dishwasher efficiently.
- Do you know how to care for your crystal glassware?