Crave Magazine

4 tips for creating your outdoor hosting space this summer

With the Euros and Paris Olympics taking place this summer, why not elevate your outdoor space to make it the perfect spot for hosting?

Below, experts from furn, Value Lights and Ginger Ray share their top tips for creating the perfect atmosphere, no matter how big or small your outdoor hosting space is.

Create the ultimate outdoor bar space

Suzi Samaddar, room styling expert at 
furn shares: “It can be difficult to know where to start when you have a smaller outdoor hosting space that you want to make the most out of.

“If you’re someone who loves hosting then an outdoor bar is one of the best ways to utilise your balcony. You’ll need to start by determining your seating arrangement and measuring how much you can realistically fit in your space. Picking a tall table with matching stools that utilises vertical space is a great way to save cluttering your balcony. You could even opt for a side table that attaches to the edge of the balcony and folds away to make the space more versatile.

“Once you’ve settled on seating you’ll want to elevate the area through styling. From outdoor rugs to patterned cushions that won’t fade in the sun, there are plenty of affordable soft furnishings that can transform an outdoor seating space. A good rug can tie a whole room together, and the same goes for outdoor spaces. 

“The energy of your balcony bar will be dialled up a few notches with the simple introduction of an outdoor rug. With a bright and audacious colour scheme or eclectic print an outdoor rug can make an eye-catching statement whilst also softening your outdoor space. 

“Accessorise with matching outdoor cushions, resistant to water and UV rays and string lighting to tie your space together. Opt for a boho blast of colours and shapes in your cushions to add an extra touch of playfulness within your hosting space.”

Frame your table with lighting 

Marlena Kaminska, Designer at ValueLights, says: “Creating a hosting space outdoors involves more than just a table and chairs, especially if you’re looking to craft an inviting ambience. Not only is lighting an essential component for the practicality of outdoor entertaining, but it’s also the secret to a good atmosphere.”

“Thoughtfully using outdoor lighting can elevate your furniture and help zone this space apart from the rest of the garden. If your table is on a patio, decking lights make a great choice for defining this area- or why not try integrating festoon lighting into your parasol for a stylishly rustic look.

“Not only does framing add structural interest to your outdoor space, but it also works to establish your dining area as a gathering spot within your garden”

Incorporate portable solar lighting for a laidback vibe

Marlena says, “Investing in portable solar lighting is a low-effort, high-reward choice for any garden space. Layering small jars and lanterns throughout your outdoor space will provide a soft glow of illumination come the evening, transforming your garden into a hub for socialisation that can be enjoyed long after the sun goes down – perfect for summer dinner parties!”

Accessorise with decorations and make a feature fence into a photo backdrop moment

Jess Martin, party planning and decoration expert at Ginger Ray, says:

“Hosting friends and family in the garden for any event is not only cost-effective but can also be a lovely convenience. Garden decorations are a perfect way to elevate any outdoor celebration and turning an existing fence into a show stopping feature is a perfect place to start. 

“Introduce layers by using hanging decorations for your guests to admire. A floral foliage garland is a subtle but sweet way of incorporating your surroundings into your decor. Or for an extra focal point, use a floral flag party bunting to spruce up your fence. For a bigger celebration, coupling your feature fence with balloons is always the way to go. A pastel balloon arch with tissue paper flowers will avoid any bold colour clashes in your garden and still maintain the wow factor.

“A feature fence can also be a great photo backdrop for those memorable moments and hanging backdrops are a low-effort but high-impact solution. To allow your guests to take centre stage in those snaps, opt for a hanging flower backdrop. If your fence colour doesn’t match the theme that you’re going for, choose a flower wall backdrop instead as it covers an entire section of the fence for a temporary celebration.

“Regardless of what decorations you opt for, an outdoor environment can appear busy, so we always recommend keeping it simple yet effective for a consistent garden party theme.”

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