Now that summer’s officially here, it’s time to start taking advantage of what the outside has to offer us. Apart from the amazing weather (fingers crossed!), the longer days and general good-mood vibes that are floating around are things that need to be used to our advantage. How better to do this with a celebration in your garden? It doesn’t matter what size garden you have, or even if you don’t have one at all – a public park can do for the majority of the points. As long as you keep an open mind, you will have an amazing time.
Step 1 – Get The Garden Ready
Unless you’re going for the English Country Garden look, there’s little chance that an unpruned garden will give you a good setting to your party. If you have grass, make sure that it is properly mowed; if it hasn’t been touched since last year, you will need to get on top of it as soon as possible to give it the chance to grow back and fill out, as well as generally getting back to rights. A freshly mown garden that has been pruned back for the first time in ages tends to be moist, and with people walking on it when it hasn’t properly recovered, this could lead to a mushy mess – as well as little bits of grass sticking to everybody’s clothing. It’s not a good look. Plan in advance and get the garden sorted before you invite anybody over. If there are any plants or bushes that are getting out of control, make sure that these are pruned back or tied up if they are overlapping into the garden. A lot of mistakes that people make in the garden when it comes to flowers and plants is knowing if or when they’re dead – too many are left to rot because they’re not picked out and thrown away when they have had their time. Be thorough and go around your plants, making sure to uproot the ones that aren’t currently thriving in this climate (and won’t be doing for the rest of the year).
Step 2 – Get Your Furniture Ready
If you have garden furniture that you leave outside, you will need to make sure that it is all up to scratch before you start to use it. If it’s made out of wood especially, you will need to ensure that there is no rot happening either on the inside or outside of it – it will just make it incredibly weak and prone to to breaking if someone were to sit on it or place an item on top of it. This only takes a quick check over to determine, and there are things that you can do to prevent it; storing it inside is the main thing that you can do to preserve your furniture, but treating it every year with wood stain if made out of that material, or giving it a good wash-down and scrub if it’s made out of metal or plastic is something that can be done to keep it going for yet another year.
Step 3 – Plan Your Entertainment
When you’re out in the garden, there’s not the same amount of stuff to keep you entertained as you may have inside your house. However, this doesn’t mean that it’s unachievable – you just have to think outside the box! Depending on the weather, you may want to take a look on Portable Tubs HQ for a hot tub to place outside for you and your guests to go in. It’s not just good for adults, but great for kids to have a dip in too, and if offers a brilliant place to retire to at the end of the night for a good drink and chat. Gardens provide a space for you to be able to create your own outside cinema; you just need a projector and a spare white sheet to hang somewhere to be able to do it. It’s a good idea to get a gazebo or some other cover for the projector in case the weather turns on you and decides to rain whilst the film is showing. If you don’t have a white sheet or anywhere to hang it, projecting what you are watching onto the side of a house can work just as well. Or, if you want to keep the entertainment relatively simple, you can look at buying or hiring garden games such as Jenga, chess and Connect 4 for all of your guests to play. This again is something that’s great for both kids and adults, although it can get quite competitive!
Step 4 – Plan Your Food
The best thing about having a garden party and planning your food when it’s summer is that you’ve got the option of having a barbecue! This grilling machine offers a taste sensation like no other, so it’s no wonder that everyone gets a bit fire-happy when the sun starts to shine. If you are catering for a lot of people, it’s best that you pre-cook most of the meats that are going on it, just to ensure that they are thoroughly cooked through and aren’t giving your guests the chance of getting food poisoning. But that’s not the only reason to do it; it actually saves a lot of time giving exactly the same (if not a slightly better) result. It’s annoying to keep going in and out of the house to get everything, so it may be a good idea to invest in a mini fridge or put a full-sized one in a garage or shed that is accessible to everybody. This is good not just for keeping food cool, but for doing the same for drinks. If you haven’t got access to this, filling up a paddling pool with cold water and some ice is also a great way to keep your beverages at optimum temperature for the duration of the party. Make sure that you know the allergies of the people that are attending, and keep foods that they can’t have away from the rest of it – or don’t include it full stop to save on the precaution.
Step 5 – Plan Your Decorations
There are a lot of amazing themes that are making their way around at the moment. When you’re putting it in collaboration with your garden, it can be a super fun way of making sure that you are creating a brilliant atmosphere for everybody involved. The great thing about gardens is that they are essentially a blank canvas for you to be able to work with. Don’t limit yourself with just how much you can actually decorate. You aren’t limited to just the perimeter of your space; you can work upwards as well, and don’t be afraid to use things like fences and trees as props. Hanging bunting can be a simple yet effective way of really lifting the mood, and incorporating themes that can be hung around the garden (pineapples and flamingos are still currently very much in style) with your cutlery, plates and glasses is a great way to really bring it all together.
Step 6 – Plan Your Music
There is no great party that makes its way without having a good beat for everyone to chill or dance to. Make yourself a playlist on a streaming service such as Spotify or Apple music, as there are so many recommendations that you can utilise that are offered based on the music that you have either added to your new playlist or what you have played in the past. If you make your playlist public, there’s also the chance for your guests to add their own preferences to it so that the music playing caters to everybody’s taste. Go with a genre of music that doesn’t intrude on conversation and that can be listened to pleasantly in the background, at least for the beginning of the party – you can start to turn things up later when everybody decides to get up for a dance.
Step 7 – Think About The Little Extras
There are just so many more things to take into consideration based on what time you are planning your party. If you are thinking of having it all day, it may be a nice idea to have sun cream on offer to those who may not have thought about the effects that the sun may be having on them throughout the duration. Later on at night, providing blankets for everybody just in case they get a bit chilly is a welcome addition. To keep bugs away, make sure that you have citronella candles available on the tables; if you light them just as dusk is creeping in, you will be able to deter the majority of critters such as mosquitoes who make their way out at night. The last thing that you want after a fabulous day is to wake up the next morning with bites all over you that could have been easily avoided.