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Welcome to my top 6 tips for hosting an outdoor party. In the past, hosting an outdoor party at our house would cause me a great deal of anxiety. I would spend days planning every detail, and then on the day of the party, I would spend hours putting everything together and getting everything ready. Unfortunately, I had a lot going on, and by the time our guests arrived, I was usually in a state of disarray.
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I eventually realized that the most successful parties we had included only a few key elements, so I devised a formula for putting together a beautiful outdoor event with the least amount of stress possible. It doesn’t matter whether you’re serving barbecue and beer or a multi-course meal; these five tips for throwing an extraordinary outdoor party will help you create an atmosphere that will make your guests want to stay long after the sun has set.
Make sure to treat your outdoor table as if it were a part of your dining room.
Whatever you would use for your dining room can and should be used for an outdoor table setting, according to my thinking. If you host an outdoor party, setting the tone with beautiful linen is a simple way to make your space more inviting. Also, don’t be afraid to bring out the silver candelabras or the fine china; anything goes here. The beauty of incorporating “indoor” items into an outdoor space is that it makes planning that much simpler.
On an outdoor patio table, gold-rimmed china and champagne-colored flatware are a stunning combination. Linen napkins, everyday dishes, and crystal champagne flutes are all appropriate for entertaining outside!
Add fresh flowers when hosting an outdoor party
In no way, shape, or form can I overstate the positive impact that fresh flowers have on any space, including an outdoor party setting. It is not necessary to hire a professional florist in order to incorporate this element; a simple trip to your local market or nursery will frequently suffice.
A couple of flower-related tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way
Keep it to one or two colors at a time. This makes it much easier to put together a beautiful arrangement that appears to have been put together without effort.
When hosting an amazing outdoor party. Make use of your imagination when selecting a container. Never be afraid to use a favorite water pitcher or another container that isn’t the traditional glass vase to display your flowers in. With the peonies, I used a zinc flower bucket alongside a couple of ceramic wine coolers to house them, while on another table, I displayed them in a champagne bucket filled with roses. All of these flowers were purchased at my local market!
Keep it as small as possible. Instead of putting together a large “centerpiece,” consider grouping 3-5 smaller containers together to create an “eco-friendly” centerpiece. This creates a lovely appearance, especially when combined with votive candles.
Potted flowers and herbs are a wonderful alternative to fresh flowers in arrangements. Using potted flowers and even herbs on my tablescapes has become a common practice for me. Their beauty lies in the fact that they retain the feel of a garden while also adding color and, in the case of herbs, fragrance.
Ensure you choose appropriate lighting for your outdoor gathering
When hosting an evening party, lighting is critical to creating the ambiance and feel that you desire for your guests. There is nothing worse than trying to eat a meal while sitting outside under bright lights, and it is even worse trying to navigate your way through a meal while eating in the dark. Candlelight, I believe, is the most effective remedy…and plenty of it!
There is something incredibly magical about watching the sun set while sitting at a table with candlelight flickering all around you. It is not only necessary to be present at the table. Lanterns or hurricane vases can be used to illuminate a pathway leading to the front door or to draw attention to a specific area.
To achieve a warm soft glow, you can also use LED candles or battery-operated wire lights in a glass container. For dessert tables and bars, I’ve even brought my indoor floor lamps outside to use as ambient lighting. When it comes to lighting, use your imagination and think outside the box!
For those of you who do have access to electricity, I also recommend outdoor light pools, which allow you to string lights all around the gathering area!
Choose the best music selection when hosting
Including background music in your party is an excellent way to create a festive atmosphere. When you host an outdoor party there is no need for an elaborate outdoor sound system; a small speaker strategically placed in a strategic location and your favorite playlist on repeat will be sufficient. When deciding what type of music to play, consider the number of people who will be in attendance as well as the atmosphere you want to create.
Match the music to the atmosphere you want to create. Keeping the volume low enough so that it does not interfere with conversation yet loud enough so that it still has an impact is the key to success.
Make your outdoor party more memorable by including special touches
Don’t you just love it when you’re at a party and you notice little details that make you feel like the host was thinking of you? Perhaps they have your favorite drink on hand, or they have that delicious dessert that you crave. When you host an outdoor party, you will not be forgotten if you can spare a few minutes to provide simple touches for your guests.
After all, is said and done, nothing will derail an outdoor gathering faster than inclement weather. Consider providing your guests with a variety of warm blankets, wraps, and jackets in case the weather turns chilly in the evenings. A few strategically placed pillows can also add a sense of coziness to your space, encouraging your guests to stay for longer periods of time.
So there you have it… Five easy ways to make your next outdoor party a smashing success! I hope this provides you with some ideas for adding those few extra special touches that will elevate your next gathering from ordinary to extraordinary!
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