What do you look forward to most in summer? For us, it’s that we can enjoy the outdoors much more. Whether it’s getting out and about and enjoying the local sites or opening up our homes to the outdoors to make the most of the garden or patio space, summer brings with it a wealth of possibilities…
One of which is outdoor entertaining – just a shimmer of sunshine is all that’s needed to wheel out the BBQ and light it up with that familiar and delightful smell of burning coals!
So, is your outdoor space entertainment-ready? We’ve got a few ideas to help you turn your space into a welcoming escape for your family and friends.
If you have a fair few get-togethers planned in over summer you’ll need somewhere to seat all your guests. Obviously the amount of space you have will dictate what furniture you can fit in, but there are some options that will help you make the most of the space. Rather than the traditional table and chairs, you could opt for a corner seating arrangement that won’t take up as much space. Combine with a smaller coffee-table-style piece for holding drinks and nibbles and the result is a laid-back outdoor lounge.
If you have a nice open grass area then you could choose a picnic bench-style table that is easily manoeuvred in one go – the kids will love it too! Waterproof beanbags also go down a treat at garden parties and create a relaxed space for drifting into the warm summer evenings.
So you’ve sorted your seating, but what about the dressing for your tabletops? Is your garden party following a particular theme or are you looking for more general dinnerware options? Your first port of call could be to find inspiration on Pinterest. They have thousands of images that will help give you an idea as to what look or trend you’re going for.
A popular choice this year seems to be the nautical trend, with navy accessories, striped designs and worn rope completing this seaside look. You could combine a sandy-coloured tablecloth with navy or striped napkins and plates to start you off!
To create a twinkling garden retreat you’ll need various forms of lighting. Fairy lights are a great option for draping over low-hanging branches on trees and bushes – ideal for when power sockets are sparse as you can pick up battery-operated ones.
For a relatively inexpensive cost, you can find giant floor lanterns that look great in the garden. Decorate with colourful flowers during the day and when night draws in, swap the flowers for candles for additional lighting – bound to gain compliments from your trendy friends!
Keep mosquitoes and other biting insects at bay with citronella candles – just be sure to place them on the perimeter of the party to avoid any nasty accidents.
Looking ahead to next year, if you want to get ahead and prepared for the garden parties of summer 2017, why not consider extending the room that backs onto the garden, or fitting glazed doors into the wall? You’ll be surprised by how much this can alter the feel of a home, especially if natural light is lacking. Perfect for opening up to the outdoors, sliding or bi-folding doors make hosting a garden party that little bit easier.
All that’s left now is to get the BBQ fired up, cakes baked and fruit chopped! Here’s to a great British summer (don’t forget the Pimm’s!).
Contact us if you’d like any more information or if we can help with turning your outdoor entertaining dream into a reality. We’re on Twitter too, @ExpressBifolds, and be sure to check out our recent case studies for inspiration!