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10 Surefire Tips For Throwing A Kid And Adult-Friendly Outdoor Soiree
Angela Belt is a Connecticut based stylist and designer. Her work has been featured in The Washington Post, Rue Magazine, Redbook and EBONY. She was the stylist for the interior design book, REMIX: Decorating with Culture, Objects and Soul.
At this time of year, when the weather is just hitting that perfect point, I look outside at my backyard and I daydream about my perfect outdoor soiree. It hits all the right notes for a perfect outdoor party: It’s chic and colorful with a menu that people... will talk about for years and the perfect design elements to make all my guests swoon. It's a beautiful vision - but then I have to remind myself that this is not for an upcoming photo shoot, but this is for my home. My home includes my two year old daughter and any party for me will likely need to be a party for her too. Well, being a stylist, I do not give up on my visual dreams, I just simply tweak them to be kid friendly while maintaining the sophisticated air that I want for my adult guests. And if your warm weather plans might see you walking that same line, I've got just the tips you need to create the perfect get together that both your adult friends and the kids.will love.
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Define Your Color Palette
Just like a room, decorating a party starts with a color palette. For events that have a kids side and an adult side, balance is the key to making everyone happy. Concentrate on selecting a color palette that is fun, yet still mature. Look for color combinations that have at least one neutral color, and one pop color in the mix. The mix of these two colors will balance the color story by giving you a fun and playful look but with those neutral elements maintaining a sophisticated tone.
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Finding The Perfect Furniture
Modular sectionals are great for outdoor spaces, especially a sectional with a durable fabric like Sunbrella that can hold up against children as well as the elements. Depending on the size and shape of your backyard space, a modular sectional can give you a lot of options for different configurations to provide maximum seating.
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Choose A Dining Table
Look for a dining table that is going to be an investment for your backyard space. I would recommend against bargain shopping at this point. If you plan to entertain every season you need to have a table that will last. At the same time there are many high-quality options that will not only resist the elements but also add to the color and style of your event.
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Selecting Outdoor Dining Chairs
If the dining table is the time to invest, the chairs are another story entirely. Comparison shop away. There are plenty of inexpensive options that will go perfectly with an upscale design. I like outdoor dining chairs that are light, stackable, and have some color to them. And you simply cannot go wrong with these Air Chairs by Jasper Morrison.
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The Right Rugs For Outside
Rugs make a beautiful addition to any styled space and the outdoors are no exception. In fact outdoor rugs may be even more ideal because they are kid and pet proof. They are extremely durable because dirt and mud simply sit on the surface of the rug, making it much easier to clean up after your soiree. The perfect inexpensive way to brighten up your space, outdoor rugs come in a wonderful range colors and patterns will help you design a party that will leave all of your guests impressed.
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Simply put, these are a must-have for your space. Any living area looks incomplete without the pillows and accessories that bring it to life. Outdoor throw pillows are an inexpensive option to turn up your space while making it feel less like an outdoor addition and more like an authentic part of your home. They can add pops of color and pattern to support either the kid or grown-up side of your color palette and are easy to swap out at any time based on your party needs.
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Twine Lanterns For DIY Lighting
Even though the days are lasting longer, a good party might easily outdistance the sunlight. That makes lighting an important consideration for any outdoor summertime soirée. Twine lanterns are great options for a number of reasons. Putting them together can be a wonderful crafting project for the kids while the BBQ is getting set-up while the finished lanterns will provide a beautiful, stylish lighting statement for everyone at the adult party once the sub goes down.
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Find The Best Plates And Serving Trays For Your Occasion
When you're hosting a party with kids, look for melamine plates and cups. Melamine is a type of thermosetting plastic that has been used in home decor for decades. In recent years there has been a twist in the type of modern patterns applied to the plates to make them look more refined. Some are even stylish enough to be displayed indoors between outdoor parties. Also look for melamine serving trays to add yet another colorful note to your event.
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Create A Kid-Friendly Bar Cart
These days, bar carts are all the rage for outdoor soirees. But how do you lifestyle them for guests under the age of 21? Even when you're favorite drink isn't on the menu those shelves can still help build the perfect snack cart, or provide a place for your utensils, plates, and sodas before your guests have their buffet dinner.
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Bring Out The Fun And Games
The same rules apply outside as indoors, kids need games to stay out of trouble, and make sure that your outdoor soiree remains intact. However, these games do not have to be expensive, and can simply be from found objects in your backyard; create an outdoor chalkboard on your fence, make tic tac toe by simply painting rocks, hang a sheet from a tree and make it tent for the little ones. The more they stay occupied in safe, constructive ways, the more freedom you have to enjoy time with friends....