From Dresses to Décor, Here's How to Throw a Stylish Summer Garden Party

Photo:

@trinekjaer_

Dining alfresco is practically a requirement for the summer. Not only does it involve a change of scenery, but also, somehow, everything feels chicer and more elegant when you're leisurely eating out in the open air. There are only a few months of the year when I actually want to be outside (without a massive puffer coat on my body and harsh winds swirling in my face), so why not take full advantage of it? With only roughly a month more to go before the easygoing vibe of the summer makes way for the refreshed beginnings of autumn, it's time to start thinking about the last-hurrah celebration.

From a sophisticated outfit to an elegant table setting, throwing a gathering to remember can be way less stressful than you'd think. There are a lot of elements to consider if you take on the task of hosting your own outdoor party, but don't worry, I've laid out everything here. I've also sprinkled in some visual inspiration throughout so you can pull from the best ideas that thrill you. Ahead, keep reading to check out my favorite décor and fashion pieces to make your next summer soirée one for the books.

Photo:

@trinekjaer_

The Setup

Photo:

@luciacuesta_

Running through all of the basics for an outdoor party can get overwhelming fast, but it really doesn't have to be stressful. A rustic vibe that melds contrasting styles can feel just as elegant as a coordinating table and chairs. The important part is that you create an ambience your guests want to feel relaxed in.

You never realize the importance of anti-mosquito measures until you're covered in bites at the end of the night. These are supremely stylish, too.

Don't stress over buying an expensive table. A good tablecloth is a transformative hack that's super affordable.

The cottagecore vibes are strong with this one.

Photo:

@matildadjerf

String lights really add a touch of romance.

If your gathering is more laid-back, opt for a beautiful blanket for a picnic-style party.

The Table Setting

Photo:

@linneklund

The key to a stylish garden party is the tabletop. Even if you're working with limited furniture, a beautiful tablescape can make all the difference. Pro tip: Don't forget the fresh flowers!

A rustic vessel for a stunning bouquet of dried (or fresh!) greenery.

Even drinking water will feel fancy with these.

Although real cutlery isn't a requirement, it certainly elevates a table setting.

Photo:

@trinekjaer_

If you don't want to splurge on fancy plates, consider cloth placemats as a way to amplify the design aspect.

Cloth napkins are just better.

Throw in some unique glassware to really get your guests' attention.

Photo:

@luciacuesta_

These can act as mini serving plates as well as salad plates.

Any dish you serve with these will look like a 10.

The Outfit

Photo:

@alessandragl

So you've put in a ton of effort to create a welcoming atmosphere for your guests. Now it's time to focus on your look. Being a hostess with the mostess is about being comfortable and confident, so choose something that you'll feel good in the entire night. Whether you're firmly about dresses or love a good pair of pants, I've outlined a few options I think are stunners.

If you like dresses…

Photo:

@anaasmood
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