Summer is the perfect time to gather your friends and loved ones for a backyard soirée. When summer rolls around with its long days and warm temps, outdoor parties beckon us with their ease and charm. Whether you're celebrating a special occasion or simply savoring the joys of the season, hosting a backyard party is a fantastic way to create lasting memories. The good news is that a backyard summer soiree can be a breeze to plan when you combine your favorite indoor elements with the great outdoors to create an inviting space. You can make it as chic, rustic, or luxe as you want. So, send out those evites, and get ready to elevate your hosting game with these easy tips!
Define Your Space
Big or small, pick your focal point and set the scene around it. Whether it’s a fire pit, great view, or a simple picnic spot, arrange your tables and seating to maximize the centerpiece of your yard or patio.
Create a Cozy Outdoor Seating Area
One way to ensure your guests feel comfortable and relaxed is by providing one or more cozy seating areas. Mix your patio furniture (if you have it) with your favorite indoor chairs, pillows, and throws. If you are a DIYer, you can also use reclaimed wood to make a simple outdoor table. (Check out our video for some great ideas!) Add cushions, blankets, and outdoor rugs to create a cozy and inviting atmosphere. Incorporate shaded areas with umbrellas or canopies to provide relief from the sun. By offering ample seating options, you'll encourage your guests to settle in and enjoy the fun!
Market lights are a popular choice for outdoor spaces and are such an easy way to add ambiance! You can use them to help define the space and set the mood. Pair with candles for a festive glow or hang twinkle lights and lanterns for a magical ambiance as the sun sets. Good lighting adds an enchantment factor to your gathering and encourages guests to linger outside.
Add indoor touches to your outdoor space to make it especially welcoming. For example, add pops of color with vibrant outdoor cushions, tablecloths, and floral arrangements. A table runner, burlap or mud cloth adds a touch of extra texture on your tables. Use a theme color throughout your space to tie it all together (hint: zesty lemon, electric blue, and magenta are all trending right now!) Bring out your favorite candles, objet d’art, and potted plants to group on dining and end tables. Hang macramé or lean a mirror against a wall or tree and drape it with greenery and flowers from your yard—this can make a small space feel bigger.
It is also a good idea to have a basket of blankets and shawls handy in case temps cool down. Hang a few decoratively over chairs or benches, too. Alfresco décor can be more whimsical and eclectic – it’s all up to your imagination!
Create a Refreshment Station
Another reason we love a good backyard party is that dining can be less formal, which makes it easier on you to enjoy, too! Keep your guests cool and hydrated with refreshing drinks, such as cucumber water or sangria. Set up a self-serve bar with a variety of beverages to suit everyone's tastes. Offer a selection of infused waters, homemade lemonade, iced tea, or even a signature summer cocktail. Enhance the presentation by adding colorful fruit slices, fresh herbs, and decorative drink dispensers. Don't forget to provide plenty of ice, glasses, and garnishes for that extra touch!
Food can be as simple as finger foods, fresh fruit, and an assortment of cheeses – so easy to prepare ahead of time! Guests can partake at their leisure, adding to the laidback vibe. Add in some barbecue and salads if you want to bolster the meal. You could even create a build-your-own salad bar with a variety of vibrant veggies, fruits, and dressings.
Set the Mood with a Summer Playlist
Music is a powerful way to set the mood and create a buzzy atmosphere, so why not curate a playlist that reflects the summer vibes you want to convey? Choose a mix of upbeat tunes for lively moments and mellower tracks for relaxing conversations. Incorporate a variety of genres to cater to different musical tastes. Remember to keep the volume at a level that allows guests to chat comfortably.
Bringing the indoors outside makes entertaining easy and encourages your guests to relax. Keep an eye on varying textures, height, and patterns in your décor. Maximize space by enhancing areas where people will naturally want to gather. Top with a summer menu and some chill tunes, and you and your guests are in for a sensational summertime soiree!