Bringing the Indoors Outdoors

As a family we love to spend time entertaining outside during the summer months. Our Dining Room has a real atmosphere and is comfortable but the garden does not have the same appeal. What can we do to enable our guests to enjoy their meals outside.

Eating outdoors is always a real treat in our unpredictable summers and ensuring that you and your guests are comfortable and not itching to go back indoors to the sofa is essential

Start by creating your outdoor dining room – the equivalent of your indoor one – the patio, decking, balcony and if possible make it close to the house for ease of transporting food and drink to and from the kitchen. Create some kind of enclosure (the walls) although this is not necessarily to be taken literally. Planters and tubs with a mix of low level and taller plants work well. Ensure that there is a view (the window). Secondly choose your garden furniture with entertaining in mind, a table large enough for plates, glasses, serving platters, jugs and bottles. Chairs should be comfy and enable people to sit up straight at the table rather than balancing on the edge of the chair. Upholster chair cushions in the season’s colours and make or have made co-ordinating placemats and napkins. Lanterns and candles on the table and ‘in the room’ will add ambience and don’t forget the citronella to ward off the bugs!

If you include children at your dinner parties allow them their own table with all the accessories that you have (but not candles) which will make them feel included and special.

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