Throw A Garden Party

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A fun way to hang out with friends and family is to throw a garden party in your backyard.

When you're planning one, be sure to check the weather. Prepare a backup plan in case Mother Nature doesn't cooperate.

Many people have the option of a screened-in porch or canopy, but you can even have a successful garden party indoors.

Items that will help you throw a great garden party include:

PARISIAN PARK TABLE
The first step for a garden party is to make sure you have the right outdoor furniture. There are several options out there. One is a classic bistro table. You can find these at any gardening or home store. You want to make sure the furniture is weatherproof, so it can stay outdoors all year-round. Weathered woods or rust-resistant steel coated in enamel can create an intimate and inviting spot on a garden terrace, bricked courtyard, or breakfast nook. The enamel-coated steel table Nickell displays can be folded for storage during inclement weather. Also, make sure the furniture is comfortable.
Price: $159.00 Availability: smithandhawkin.com

PARISIAN PARK CHAIRS
Nickell also shows chairs to match the table. They fold up as well.
Price: $129.00 for each chair Availability: smithandhawkin.com

TABLECLOTH
The polka-dot tablecloth Nickell uses is so much fun, it basically lets your guests know right away that they're in for a great time. The Round Green Polka-Dot Tablecloth is 60 inches.
Price: $12.99 Availability: HomeGoods

Another appealing one is Crate and Barrel's 60" Square Azure or Chartreuse Tablecloth
Price:$39.95 Availability: crateandbarrel.com

CITRUS TABLECLOTH WEIGHTS
If you have a square tablecloth on a round table, a cool idea is to take garden tools or pretty stones or buy some table weights, and attach them to your four corners. The citrus slices with gleaming metal "rinds" and chains Nickell has are a picnic-perfect way to weigh down your outdoor tablecloth. The weights clip around the corners to resist wind and make a beautiful and stylish decoration.
Price: $13.95 Availability: crateandbarrel.com

SOLID AND FLORAL ACRYLIC DINNER PLATES
Flowers in the garden can dictate the color palette. These plates have huge graphic flowers and are available in multiple color combinations. Turquoise, orange and magenta are hot colors this season, and Better Homes and Gardens loves to show people how to mix and match. On hand are solid and floral acrylic dinner plates that are available in a variety of colors at any major department store. Acrylic plates are inexpensive, fun, and extremely family friendly. They're much more durable than paper or plastic disposable plates, and won't break. Make sure your acrylic plates are dishwasher friendly: It just makes cleaning up that much easier.
The solid Acrylic dinner/charger plates:
Price: $2.99 each
Multi-Floral on Green Background Acrylic Floral Dinner Plates:
Price: $1.99 each.
Availability: Target and Wal-Mart

To display the plates, first put down a charger plate with a solid rim. On top, place your favorite flower and alternate colors around your table.

PAPER/PLASTIC PLATES
They can be mixed and matched as well, to create a fun and festive look. But they tend to cost about 50 cents a plate, and you can only use them once. Nickell also has some great samples, in case people want to stick with disposable.
  • Brian Dakss

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