Warmer, longer days are on the way, and you probably want to take advantage of them. Being outdoors is relaxing and enjoyable, and there’s no better way to do it than by hosting a fun party. Make sure your patio is fabulous and event-ready with these helpful tips.
Consider the Flow
Long before guests arrive, walk around your patio and take stock of the space. Where will people mingle, sit, and eat? How many guests can you invite so everyone is comfortable? Address any safety hazards like uneven deck boards or slick surfaces to keep spills to a minimum. Also think about how the traffic will flow and proactively remove the chances for guests to “bottleneck” in one area.
Secure Seating Areas
Even the best parties have guests who want to get off their feet at some point. Instead of one seating area, set up a few of them if your space permits. Two or three small chairs grouped around an ottoman, a small outdoor dining table with chairs around it, and a few lawn chairs in another corner of the patio invite intimate, friendly conversations throughout the evening.
Create Standing Room
An epic party requires small pods of standing room because many people would rather walk around and mingle than sit. Map out your space so there are a few areas where a handful of people can congregate to talk and eat. Add string lights to make it more welcoming.
Keep Clutter to a Minimum
It’s nobody’s idea of fun to trip over a table and spill their drink, or even worse, hurt themselves. Remove any furniture or other items that aren’t necessary during the party like storage boxes or other items that have accumulated on your patio. Decluttering gives your guests more room to enjoy themselves and removes tripping hazard risks.
Think About Tunes
Music is essential to an epic gathering of any kind, and an outdoor party is no different. Set small speakers around the patio so everyone can hear your awesome playlist. Good music sets the tone for fun festivities, so keep the songs upbeat. Turn on all your speakers and walk around the space before the party to make sure there aren’t areas where the music is either too loud or non-existent.
Use Small Tables
Instead of one large table to hold all the food (which can cause a bottleneck) add a couple of smaller tables to the mix. Food stations are fun! Good ideas are to set up each small table with a food theme. Examples are a sweet and salty station, a taco bar, a candy bar, a chicken and waffle station, and a pizza bar. Your party will have a bit more of a theme doing it this way with the added benefit of your guests being able to easily access good eats throughout the evening.
Designate a Bar Corner
Don’t let your guests get thirsty! Set up a thin table in a corner of your patio to serve as the bar. Pre-mix pitchers of lemonade and punch, or alcoholic drinks like daiquiris and margaritas, and a big ice bucket for guests to help themselves. Ice down beer, soda, and water in a cooler beside the table. Wrap string lights around the table so, as the evening progresses, your guests can see what they’re doing.
Bring the Party Into the Yard
If your patio is on the smaller side, don’t despair. Take steps to encourage your party’s attendees to spread out into the grass. Set up a couple of seating vignettes in the yard and light some tiki torches around the lawn. A fire pit is another crowd pleaser that provides a place for people to hang out. Make sure everyone can still hear the party music by setting up speakers around the perimeter of the yard.
Add Soft Touches
Finally, don’t forget that your guests want to be comfortable, especially as the night gets a bit cooler. Pillows and throws not only create a nice look, but they also provide functionality for your guests. Lay fluffy throws over the arms of chairs for guests to grab and snuggle up in. Add some pillows around the seating as well so people can settle in.
There are endless ideas to use for inspiration when you are creating your next epic outdoor gathering. By using our tips for setting up your space, along with providing delicious food and drinks and great music, your party is bound to be the shindig of the season!