Now that summer is in full swing, there’s no better way to enjoy it than by spending time outdoors with friends and family. Add good food and drinks to the mix, and you’ve got yourself a party! Since everyone wants to be outside, put some thought and effort into creating the perfect outdoor entertaining space for summer. And for Southern Californians, you’ll likely be able to enjoy it through October! Whether you’re working with acres or a small patio, some well-placed potted plants, an outdoor rug and matching patio furniture can make all the difference. The sooner you can get your yard in prime shape, the more likely you are to take advantage of the weather. If your patio looks warm and inviting all the time, then you’re ready to host friends without much notice. Simply opening a bottle of wine and turning on some music can make for an instant party. Here are our top tips for making your backyard bashes a success:
Pick the Perfect Spot
Before you start purchasing new patio furniture, or arranging what you’ve already got, it’s important to be mindful of the type of space you’re working with. Look at your yard as a whole and determine the area that you’re more likely to do your entertaining in, then plan the rest of your yard around it. The spot you choose should be the area most conducive to entertaining. It’s important that the space be comfortable for guests, so you’ll want something that has shade, and has a fairly level ground so it’s easy to setup furniture on and easy for guests to walk on. Also make sure it’s not too far from your kitchen to allow for easy access when serving food/drinks. Access to outdoor power is also a plus. And don’t forget to consider the type of parties you want to host and create the spaces to accommodate them. Do you have film buff friends who you’d love to screen outdoor movies for? Or perhaps most of your friends have children, and you want to make sure the layout is kid-friendly. There are many ways to go, so don’t over-think it- just go with what suits you and your lifestyle. It’s that simple!
Determine Your Layout
One of the most important aspects of creating the ultimate outdoor entertaining space comes down to how things are arranged. It’s important to figure out the best layout for your parties and then repeat the setup every time you entertain. For example, knowing that your patio can hold one lounge area and a bar and still have a nice flow for guests to move around means that every time you can go back to that setup, regardless of the party style and know it will work well. Another thing to think about when looking at your layout is how to create ample seating for guests. Whether you’re doing a sit-down dinner at one long table, or casual dining with guests open to sit where they’d like, a place to sit makes for happy guests who will ultimately be more comfortable and stay longer. Fire pits are great ways to create fun conversation areas, and the heat the fire provides is always welcome when the night starts to get chilly.
By keeping the overall look neutral you can easily incorporate elements of your party’s theme. Hosting a beach bash? Add pops of bright color with outdoor pillows and accents in fun hues or vases full of shells that can be removed once the party is over. Trends change and so do tastes and favorite colors and patterns, so it’s best to keep overall decor neutral. Since party themes are always changing, avoid decorating the yard in a way that’s too stylized. Stick with neutral colors and design so any party you might throw can easily work with what you already have in place. And if you’re not a theme person, don’t worry. The summer season is all about stylish simplicity and embracing the outdoors as a place to eat, drink and have fun.