With some planning and preparation, your garden can be transformed into a magical, social space. There is something special about using your own backyard to celebrate an occasion.
From weddings to birthday parties and intimate dinners with family and friends – it’s the perfect venue to let your creativity run wild.
Preparation is key
Even if you’re the spontaneous type that likes to invite the neighbours over at a minute’s notice, there’s plenty you can do to get your garden guest-ready. Whether it’s removing weeds, cutting grass, or installing a fire pit, creating an action plan will help make your party dreams a reality.
Sprucing up your garden will not only make it look more inviting to your guests, but also make it easier to care for in the long run. Once you’ve tidied up, you can start planning the layout of your event. Draw a rough sketch of the space and start visualising where tables, snug retreats and game areas will best fit.
It’s time to call the professionals
If you’re planning a major event, like a wedding reception, talk to a professional landscaper in advance. This way you’ll know when and where to plant your favourite flowers, so they bloom in time for the big day.
If you’re finding it hard to decide on the best layout for your outdoor nuptials, enlist the help of a wedding planner. They’ll be able to estimate how many guests will fit in your garden, and what to do if the weather takes a bad turn.
Enhance your event with outdoor furniture
Organising a large alfresco party? Think about renting tables, chairs, bar, tent and whatever else you might need. Make sure the table is the centrepiece of your party, but don’t forget about setting up a cosy corner using cushions and throws for your guests to lounge in after dinner.
Sofas and benches are perfect if you’re going for a more relaxed party vibe or want to create some separate areas for mingling.
Don’t get caught in the rain
Checking the weather forecast at least a week before the event will help you prepare for rain, hail or shine. If it’s likely to rain, hiring or purchasing a gazebo is a quick and easy solution. They’re available in a range of sizes and prices, and can look very chic when fitted out stylishly.
If your occasion is slightly more formal, hiring a marquee might be a good idea. Marquees offer shelter from rain and sun, and hire companies also provide furniture, heating and lighting.
Create character with lighting
When the sun finally sets, you’ll need ample lighting for the party to continue outside. Lanterns and fairy lights can instantly add dimension to your garden, in addition to creating an enchanting atmosphere.
You may even want to install permanent outdoor lighting if you’re planning on using certain spaces a lot over the warmer months.
Keep the party going
Even in summer, keeping your guests warm in evenings is something you should consider. Investing in an outdoor heater or fire pit not only encourages your visitors to stay longer, but crowding around a fire is also a lovely way to end the night.
Having plenty of blankets on hand is another easy solution, especially if you’re planning on hosting something like an outdoor cinema. All you need for your open air movie night is somewhere to hang a white sheet, a projector and some comfy seating (think bean bags and lots of cushions). Don’t forget the popcorn, drinks and – of course – the perfect summer flick for a real VIP screening experience.
Adding these personal touches to your garden will help make your event a memorable one. From the food and drink you serve, to the style of your outdoor furniture, organising a classic British garden party is one of the best ways to enjoy the summer months.