Summer party tips and tricks
1st May 2015
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Summer is upon us and slowly, one-by-one, we're coming out of hibernation and entering our gardens as the sun begins to shine. Us Brits seem to go doollaly as soon as we see a glimmer of sun, but let's be honest, we never know how long it'll last!

This summer is *supposed* to be a fairly good one, with continuous warm spells expected to cause a few thunderstorms (which means it must be a hot one, right?!). But whatever the weather, it'll be hard to dampen our spirits, especially when it comes to Pimms o'clock!

So, why not gather a few (or a lot) of friends and have a spectacular garden party this summer? It's never too early to get planning, and we've done the hard work for you!

Here are our top-tips for creating an extra special summer party - just don't forget the barbeque!


  • Fairy lights are great for creating a relaxed atmosphere. Drape them over fences, hedges and trees to create soft mood lighting for when the sun goes in. You can buy solar powered lights so that you don't need extension leads - less mess to trip over!
  • Bunting is a British classic, so grab some colourful bunting online or at party shops or create your own with old strips of fabric and drape them around the outside of the house - voila!
  • Tablecloths: you'll be outside, so you might be thinking 'why do I need a tablecloth?' - the answer is simple: to add colour and for an easy clean up! If you use a disposable tablecloth, just bosh all the mess and debris onto the table, pick up the corners and transfer all the rubbish into a bin - job done!

Food and Drink

  • Pimms - what would a summer party be without a few jugs of Pimms? Enough said!
  • In the same breath, what would a summer party be without a BBQ? When it comes to a large party, it's best to cook your food to about 90% in the oven before transferring to the BBQ. This means you'll have more food ready at the same time and there doesn't need to be a designated BBQ-er spending hours turning the food!
  • Fruit ice cubes are a GREAT idea, especiall when it comes to Pimms. Place small pieces of fruit in an ice tray, fill with water and wait. Pop the frozen fruit ice cubes into jugs of Pimms or leave them in the freezer for guests to pop in their drinks when they're ready.
  • Champagne lollies - pop fruity ice lollies into glasses of champagne. They'll melt slowly giving the champagne a sweet and tasty flavour whilst keeping it cold. Perfect!
  • Drink covers - turn cupcake cases upside down and push a straw through the middle to create a cover for drinks, a sure-fire way to keep flies and bees away from the good stuff!

Finishing touches

  • Watermelon punch bowl - carve out a watermelon to use as a punch bowl (great for Pimms!). Don't throw the watermelon away - keep it as a refreshing snack for guests, or freeze them in cubes to make watermelon ice cubes!
  • Seating - essential, but quite often overlooked. Every guest needs somewhere to sit, if not around one large table, scattered throughout the garden. Consider bringing your indoors chairs outside, use bean bags, large cushions - anything that's comfy. Make sure you've got enough surfaces too for guests to eat on or place down their drinks.
  • Blankets - we all know it can get a bit chilly in the evening, so have a number of blankets available for guests to warm up with
  • Cushions - comfort is key to a successful party! You can have the best food, drink and music, but without a comfy place to perch, sit or stand, guests won't want to stay for long. Scatter cusions around the garden for a place to sit and to bring the indoors outside!
  • Lucky dip beer bin - thoroughly clean an empty rubbish bin, fill with ice and beer and you'll have a lucky dip cold beer bin!


Yep - there's a LOT to think about when organising a summer party. It might be too much to handle, or you may wish to simply enjoy your party rather than be the host that no one gets to speak to because they're too busy clearing up/cooking/making drinks/etc.

So here's our best tip of them all - consider a party organiser. Whether you just want them to cook the food, serve the drinks or organise the whole party, Parties To Go can do it all. They've even got a mouth-watering, tried-and-tested, HUGELY popular BBQ menu on their website already, along with canapes, brunch, themed food and SO much more.

Tempted? View their profile by clicking the link below - it'll be worth it, promise!

About the Author

Andrew M

Member since: 10th July 2012

The Best of Wimbledon and Merton helps to bring all the best local information to all local residents and businesses throughout Wimbledon and Merton. We also bring trusted businesses and the community...

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