Well hello there, Summer, I thought you’d never arrive!
I hope you’re all able to soak up some extra time with family and friends over this Memorial Weekend like I am! And, if you’re like me, that means hosting backyard get-togethers.
Wait, you’re backyard isn’t ready for guests, you say?
Don’t panic! Keep reading for 3 seriously easy, and affordable!, ways to jazz up your outdoor space in time for hosting those summer BBQ’s and bonfires!
1- Refresh your accent pillows and toss in a summer-weight throw for added style
I typically design my backyard areas to reflect the the feel and decor I have going on inside my home, but also love the fun surprises that bright pops of color can bring to outdoor spaces! There are no rules when it comes to decorating backyard, in my opinion, so go wild and bold if you’re feeling it!
Switching out pillows and throws is hands down the easiest way to refresh a space, both indoors and out, and make it feel new and inviting.
And, don’t feel restricted to just ‘outdoor’ labeled items made from fabrics such as Sunbrella. Often times I choose indoor pillows and coat them with a Water Repellent spray like Rust-Oleum’s NeverWet before using. Keep in mind though that it’s still recommended to bring them in each night.
2- Setup a designated ‘serving’ area for beverages and food items with outdoor safe serving ware in a coordinating color
I love shopping HomeGoods’ selection of seasonal items! They always carry pretty collections of melamine and shatterproof serving ware in fun colors and styles. And at the typical price point of $2.99/glass, they’re totally affordable, too!
Also, if you don’t already own an apothecary style beverage dispenser, you’re missing out. I’ve collected several over the years and use them every time I entertain- year round. They really jazz up your drink selection and look so much more put together over just sitting out basic pitchers of tea or lemonade. Toss in a decorative tray and you’ve rounded out a simple, but thought out beverage station!
3- Ambient lighting
I’m a huge fan of the cafe light trend. The kits are easily found at any retailer that carries seasonal outdoor decor like Target, Home Depot, Lowe’s and AtHome Stores, and pretty simple to install. If you don’t have a structure overhead to attach them to- like a pergola or low hanging trees, a great alternative is using eye hooks (from the exterior of your home) to posts or tall rods positioned out in the yard. For easy DIY tutorials, check out these posts from Bright July, Blue i Style – or for a more permanent, commercial take on this look, see Gray House Studio’s amazing project!
Or, if you’re down to the final hour before guests arrive, strategically scattered outdoor lanterns are a quick way to add lots of visual interest to your entertaining area! I stock up on the battery operated candles made specifically for outdoors- meaning they’re made of plastic, NOT wax!, like 99% of BOC’s. Trust me, the wax versions last about a day under the hot sun so make sure to read the packaging to confirm their material! The plastic versions can be somewhat hard to find, but I’ve spotted them at Pier One recently. My favorite brand, however, is the Luminara that I buy from Pottery Barn (along with the remote!) for their realistic flame.
** GIVEAWAY Alert**
My good friends over at Lauren Nicole Designs are giving away the gorgeous Mercury Glass Hurricane with LED lights ($60 value!) pictured above, far right! This is a perfect addition to your summer entertaining setup and who doesn’t love the Mercury Glass trend! To enter, all you have to do is comment on their blog post today (Monday 5/30/2016).
And for more Summertime inspiration, head over to see what these sweet girls are doing, too!
Happy entertaining, ya’ll!