Entertaining outdoors is always a wonderful option for those who love entertaining at home. Barring bad weather, a garden party is one of the most flexible outdoor entertaining options there is to host. Here are a few things to consider:
- Garden parties can range from super casual (light refreshments, no dress code) to extremely formal.
- There is no special time of day for garden parties, they can begin or end at dusk. It’s entirely up to you.
- You don’t need a garden. All you need is an outdoor space, seating, and creativity.
Themes for garden parties are as varied as there are reasons to host a garden party. For a parisian theme think pastels, china, and bubbling wine with teas and coffee. A Tuscan theme should involve one communal table, wine, vivid prime colors, and Italian food. You can choose a garden party to host a bridal or baby shower or going away party. The one thing a garden party is not is a barbecue, but if you want that as an element try to keep the grilling away from guests. The smoke can be irritating and distracting.
When I plan a garden party, I zone in the most immediate need such as flowers and vegetation, the likelihood of bugs (it’s important), and the number of guests invited. I consult with my florist for design ideas and to see if we need to import arrangements – potted or in vases. I will work with a gardener to ensure that the area has bug repellents that inhibit bug activity. And, I survey the area for the best use of space.
One last thing, lighting is important. Day or night, string lighting adds a hint of elegance while providing some practicality.