Ah summer…the days can be brutal, but the nights can be magical. Honestly there are few things in this world that I love more than warm summer night, chilled white wine, good friends and a beautiful outdoor space to kick back in. Unfortunately my apartment does not come with such a space, but thank god for friends with patios. Check out my round up of must haves and 3 tips for summer evening entertaining, but first go chill that wine I’ll be over later.
Tip 1: Make your outdoor space an extension of your home. Think mood lighting, rugs, and pillows a plenty!
I am a firm believer in twinkle lights. But instead of stringing up some old Christmas lights why not opt for these fun vintage looking globe light from Crate&Barrel. They create such a lovely atmosphere you will want to dine alfresco every night.
Rugs…I know some people think its odd. However, an outdoor rug will do exactly what an indoor rug does inside; it pulls a space together. It creates a more cohesive comfortable area to relax in. Check out one of my personal favorites also from Crate&Barrel.
If you have accepted the outdoor rug then maybe you will accept outdoor floor cushions and pillows. Remember the space is an extension of your home, you want to create an area that is inviting. Check out a few of my favorites from Pottery Barn. Now although many of the pillows and cushions for outdoors are mold, mildew,rot and fade resistant I would still take them inside if a monsoon is about to hit. Or better yet get an outdoor storage container like this one from IKEA.
Tip 2: Invest in good quality patio furniture. It will last years and save you money in the long run. However, if it kills you to splurge on outdoor furniture IKEA does have some great options and great prices.
If you have the funds to splurge think outdoor living room with the Chatham Collection from Pottery Barn.
Or maybe you are working with a small space, if so try the more streamlined and simple Regatta Collection from Crate&Barrel.
Also if you are working with a small space and need extra seating only when company arrives consider these director chairs from Pier1. You can pick from three different color woods and they have some really great covers in various colors and patterns. So mix it up! And when not in use they easily fold up and can be tucked away.
Tip 3: Any decent outdoor summer entertaining is going to involve booze of some sort. Be prepared and organized!
If you have the space I would create the bar area away from the lounging/sitting area (but not too far away! you should never be too far away from your favorite summer beverage) Check out this efficient and handsome set up from the Regatta Collection at Crate&Barrel.
Or if you have a huge patio and money to spare check out this gorgeous piece from Pottery Barn. Your outdoor fête will be well stocked and well organized!
If space and money are an issue you can always create an adorable and functional bar. First buy this cart from IKEA. Then pick up a few galvanized tubs from Amazon. And some pretty containers for garnishes and such….and BOOM! you have an instant organized adorable bar.
As with all things design and decorating related, get creative! Check out Pinterest for some great outdoor DIY decor and more! And if you are feeling overwhelmed with options, just pick a vibe you want to convey and go from there, it will all fall into place.
Now go call some friends, fire up the grill, break out the smore’s kit, and stock that bar!!