8 Top Tips on How to Throw a Garden Party like a Pro

Image: A group of friends enjoying a garden party under the stars. As the summer sun graces us with its sporadic presence, there's no better time to unleash your garden party hosting skills. Garden parties...

Garden Party Image: A group of friends enjoying a garden party under the stars.

As the summer sun graces us with its sporadic presence, there's no better time to unleash your garden party hosting skills. Garden parties have long been a beloved British tradition, reminiscent of afternoon tea and exquisite cakes. From the grand festivities at Buckingham Palace to intimate gatherings in your own backyard, garden parties have evolved into a more relaxed and affordable affair.

Throwing the perfect garden party may seem daunting, but fear not! We've gathered some expert tips from Marc Ahmed, the CEO and founder of luxury party and events company Scarlet, to help you host a memorable and fun-filled outdoor bash.

1. Set a Budget and Stick to It

Budget Image: A person holding a wallet, symbolizing budget planning.

Before you embark on your party planning journey, determine a maximum budget. Consider the number of guests you intend to invite and allocate funds accordingly. Ahmed advises factoring in potential additional guests and being mindful of the costs of food, drinks, and decorations. By setting a budget, you ensure financial flexibility and prevent overspending.

2. Food: Fresh, Light, and Inclusive

Food Image: A delicious spread of BBQ grilled halloumi, honey-glazed aubergine, and salads.

Ahmed emphasizes the importance of prioritizing food after deciding on a location. Opt for fresh and light ingredients, avoiding heavy carbs and hot dishes during summer parties. Consider dietary requirements and allergies, making sure to cater for vegetarians, vegans, and common allergies like nuts, shellfish, and gluten. Hiring a chef or caterer can provide expert guidance and ensure a delightful culinary experience for your guests.

3. Plan for the Unpredictable British Weather

Weather Image: A garden party with umbrellas ready for unexpected rain showers.

The British weather is notoriously unpredictable, so it's crucial to have a wet weather plan. Make sure you have covered areas for guests to shelter from rain. Ahmed advises cooking undercover and arranging alternative seating choices. If your house doesn't accommodate large numbers, consider hiring a marquee with open sides. Additionally, keep your guests comfortable when the temperature drops by providing outdoor heating options or cozy blankets.

4. Save the Date: Send Invitations in Advance

Invitations Image: A beautifully designed garden party invitation.

To ensure a smooth party experience, send out "Save The Date" cards two to three months prior to the event and formal invitations six to eight weeks in advance. Adjust the timing based on the size of your gathering. For smaller, more intimate parties, a friendly WhatsApp message a few weeks beforehand can suffice. By giving your guests ample time to plan, you increase the chances of a full attendance.

5. Create an Aesthetic Wonderland

Decorations Image: A beautifully decorated garden with flowers, string lights, and lanterns.

When choosing your decorations, consider the uniqueness of your garden. Opt for tastefully designed balloons and an abundance of vibrant floral arrangements. Exquisite floral installations in bold summer colors are currently in vogue. Consider sustainability by using flower decorations that can be recycled or given as party tokens. Illuminate the atmosphere with festoon lighting, hanging spheres, or even a mesmerizing projection mapping show.

6. Music: Set the Right Tone

Music Image: A DJ booth and a crowd of people dancing at a garden party.

Choose music that suits your taste and will get your guests grooving. Avoid sticking to a single genre all night long; instead, mix it up to cater to everyone's preferences. If you want to play it safe, hire a live band and a DJ to provide a diverse musical experience. Remember to be considerate of your neighbors and adjust the volume as the night progresses.

7. Dress Code: Set the Style

Dress Code Image: People dressed in elegant summer attire enjoying a garden party.

To ensure a classy and summery ambiance, establish a dress code that complements the overall theme. Cohesion is key, from color schemes to drink and food pairings. Consider options like "summer chic," "all-white," or a bold and beautiful approach. Choose what resonates with your personal taste and flair. If you opt for a themed party, be sure to go all out with the right props and decor.

8. Bid Farewell with Memorable Gifts

Parting Gifts Image: Beautifully wrapped small baskets filled with luxury party favors.

As the night comes to an end, show appreciation to your guests with thoughtful parting gifts. For extravagant garden parties, consider small baskets or hampers filled with luxury items. For smaller affairs, handmade biscuits or flowers make for inexpensive yet memorable tokens. It's the perfect way to thank your loved ones for their company and ensure they leave with a smile.

Remember, hosting a garden party is about creating a warm and enjoyable experience for your guests. By following these top tips, you'll elevate your party planning skills and create lasting memories in your very own outdoor oasis.

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