Summer is here, and with it comes the chance of getting together with friends and family to host a cook out or dress up for a dinner party. If you’re anything like me, you don’t just want an OK party; you want the best party! To do that there are a few cool things that you are going to need to get. Check out what they are below.
Of course, if you are holding a summer party, the chances are that you will want to spend some time outdoors with your guests. Especially if you are in sunny Vegas like me. So you will need to make sure that there is enough seating for everyone.
One option is to go for a picnic style event and use blankets on the ground; then people can sit in little groups to eat and chat. If you want to preserve a refined feel, while doing the picnic trend, then get some wicker hampers and fill them with prepacked food and surprises. Then add some champagne glasses and a bottle of bubbly for a real treat.
If you want people to be able to sit round the table, a beautiful garden furniture set like this, which can seat up to eight people. You also have the added advantage of some shade for when the sun gets really hot. Most people like to eat off of a table rather than just holding their plate or resting in their lap too. It will give your party a bit more formality and a sense of occasion.
If you are planning a big do, eight seats may just not be enough. A good solution to this is to rent some chairs from an events company. They will deliver and pick them up and you can choose from a range of designs. Then you don’t have to worry about shelling out for more garden furniture that you will probably only ever use occasionally.
Paper plates were so last year, so invest a beautiful dinner service to impress your guests. If you are going for a stylish minimal theme, then white works well. Food always looks impeccably presented set on a simple white plate.
Set the table with a white tea plate, stacked on top on a white dinner plate. You can create a simple place setting with a white or burlap napkin and a white or cream garden rose for each person. Don’t forget to add some height to the table with some simple clear or white vases. Add peony flower heads and some twinkling lights which will provide a beautiful effect as the sun goes down.
If you want something a bit more funky why not go for an unusual and vibrant designs like this. Mix and match different patterns for an eclectic yet cohesive look that will impress your guest with your style as well as your food.
You may not always thing about serving coffee at a summer party, but the best thing digs always end with coffee and chocolate as a digestive. Too hot for coffee? Then why not treat your guest to iced coffees or some coffee martinis as an aperitif?
A word of advice, check out the instant and make sure that you have a decent espresso machine, with good quality beans if you are going to go the coffee route. You can research the top 5 espresso machines in 2016 that are under $500, so you get the best deal. Don’t forget that this isn’t just a party item but something that you will get daily use out of for years, so it worth investing a bit more to get a good one.
Having a beautiful dinner service, and cheap cutlery is not a good mix. If you have one, then you need to go for the other too.
When buying cutlery, the most important thing to consider is weight. Good quality cutlery will have some heft behind it.
You can go for some ultra modern designs like this or a more classic design like this. The latter come in both silver and the bang on trend gold variety too. Wouldn’t that just set of your your dinner service perfectly. Just saying.
One of the best party trends this season in the Southern trend of drinking jars. These are glass pots usually used for pickling that are used as cups. They are decorative and to and look fantastic when you have a matching dispenser with a tap.
You can service cocktails in them or even your own special blend of ice tea, which is perfect if you have BBQ style food at your celebration.
To make your ice tea boil some water and add black tea bags like these. Add sugar or agave to sweeten to taste. This is your tea base. Then decant it into a bottle and chill overnight. On the day of the party chill some water, grab some ice and some lemon slices. Add half the mixture to your servicing jar, fill up with the remaining water, ice and lemon and let you guest serve themselves a refreshing drink.
You may want to consider getting a sunshade or sail for your outdoor soiree. This especially applies if you are living is a hot climate. You guests will definitely appreciate having somewhere cool to sit to enjoy their food, without being in danger of getting sun burnt.
It also means that there is little excuse for anyone to go into the house. This is going to make it much easy to clean up after the party because all the chaos is kept only to the garden.
Pool / hot tub
It is a known fact that all outdoor parties are made at least 75% better with the presence of a pool or hot tub. Honest! Having a pool at a summer party gives it a relaxing feel and allows the kids to blow off some steam.
If you’d like to go the whole hog for your guest in this way, don’t worry, you don’t have to get the builders in! Now you can purchase or hire a collapsible version. They have a flexible plastic shell that is supported with hollow metal poles. This means that you can still get a good depth above ground. Just make sure that your start to fill it early, so it’s not half done when the guest begins arriving.
Treat yourself to some beautiful and decorative serving plates for your summer blow out. The nice thing about putting all the food on the table and letting people help themselves is that it gives your party a chilled out vibe. It can also help to break the ice between guest that don’t know each other, as they will have to ask the person across from the to pass the potatoes etc.
A great tip for purchasing service pates or ranchers is to go to the thrift store. There you can find some crazy design when used together look quirky and hip. Just make sure that they don’t have any chips in the glazed side and that you give them a good wash in hot soapy water before use.
If you’re not really into the thrift store, then you can buy some gorgeous serving plate from here. Remember that if you are serving hors d’oeuvres, you will need enough for them and then main meal. I’m sure you don’t want to be getting up in between to do a round of washing up!
BBQ / grills
For many outdoor parties mean barbequed food. If you have a built in grill area, then make sure that you have enough fuel and equipment to handle the volume of guests that you are catering for. You will need an apron, tongs, oil spray, and a spare pair of tongs if you are doing a vegetarian option. Maybe even some BBQ chips to get that hickory smoked flavour too. You will also need separate boxes or tubs to store raw and cooked food in. Rope one of the kids in to help you take the cooked food to where it is being served.
If you grill has seen better days, then there is no better time to treat yourself to a new one. Go for a gas grill, which is clean and efficient. They come in a variety of sizes, so not matter how many portions of ribs you have to get cooked, you’ll have enough room.
Even if you’re not celebrating a specific occasion, it’s always good to decorate your party for a more festive atmosphere. There are a lot of ways that you can do that. The hot trend at the moment is for pastel coloured paper garlands like these which you can easy make at home.
To make your own, just take some rectangles tissue paper and fold in two Then cut ¾ of the way up, and unfold. Then lay them out in a row and-and row your string to each one in the middle. Once they are all tied, you can fluff them out, and you’ll have an excellent decoration to liven up your party. Follow the instructions here. Remember too that 50’s American kitsch is in so that you can go wild with plastic lawn flamingos and pineapple cocktail shakers.
Don’t forget the little touches too. Think matching or complimentary napkins and hors d’oeuvres picks to completely finish the look.