Thursday, July 31, 2014

Casual Backyard Party

I had mentioned in a previous post, that the impetus for my redecorating my back patio was an upcoming backyard party.  My dear sweet husband has a tendency to sign me up for things, and I have a tendency to just say "Ok".  Maybe underneath it all I secretly know that having a deadline makes me get things done.  I had been thinking about redecorating my back patio area for a while, but nothing holds my feet to the fire quite like the looming presence of a house full of guests.

This party was hosted by us and another couple as a fundraiser for a friend of ours who is running as the local mayoral candidate in our hometown. We decided we wanted to keep it casual, and keep it out in the back patio area.  In retrospect, perhaps doing that during the last weekend in the month of June in Florida was not the best choice.   Yes, it was hot.  Not just a little hot, more like, melt your make-up off in minutes, hot.  But, we pressed on, and the party was a success.

 Here is how we set up the back patio for the party.  We were anticipating up to 50 people, so we decided to go with cocktail height tables to keep everyone mingling.  By the way, this is one of the only times my pool is ever without the 4 foot child fence around the perimeter.  It is so strange for me to see it this way!  Anyhow, we strung globe lights from the second floor balcony to different points in the yard to provide some ambiance and light once the evening hours came.

You may recognize these centerpieces from a previous post.  The little chalkboard signs are from Jo-Ann Fabrics and the little filled votive candles were found at Michaels.  We layered a square of burlap fabric (super cheap!) on top of the white tablecloths to add a little more interest and more of a casual feel.

We kept the drink area separate from the food buffet area.  You can see the drink table in the background of the photo below.  This really helps keep things moving around the room (or patio).

 The buffet area.  We had used a rental service for the table linens, so I had not even thought about needing to iron them.  Lesson learned.  Next time I will be sure to pull out the steamer.

 For a fun dessert, we created a s'mores tray.  I was so excited about this idea.  Unfortunately, the temperature outside meant that not too many people were ready to sit by the fire to roast marshmallows that evening, but the chocolate squares were eaten for sure!


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