With the weather getting warmer, more and more people are planning garden parties. A garden gazebo is an ideal addition to your outdoors to really make your party special. With a roof to shelter you from the sun or (because this is England) rain, the open sides still allow your guests to enjoy being outside and with nature. If you’re hosting a garden party this year, whether it be an outdoor wedding, a summer barbecue, or a cocktail evening, you’ll want gazebo decorations that fit your theme.
With the gazebo being so versatile for your outdoor party, LOFA have decided to do a series of articles for you showcasing just how you can transform your gazebo to fit a variety of occasions! Spring is settling in and summer is just around the corner, so we’re currently daydreaming about serene sunny evenings that drift into twilight which means we’ll be starting this series with the ideal garden gazebo decorations for a relaxed outdoor party.
Relaxed Garden Party Decorations
If you’re throwing a relaxed evening for your friends and family, you might be picturing acoustic guitars, drinks from mason jars, and sweet lighting to really cozy-up the atmosphere; but how do you achieve the perfect feel for this relaxed garden party? Getting your gazebo decorations just right will guarantee you a frolicsome evening that everyone will be begging you to throw again year after year.
Blankets and cushions are a must for this kind of garden party; you’ll want your guests to be able to recline at leisure, and move their seating wherever the mood takes them. If the grass is dry enough, you can scatter cushions across your lawn and lay out picnic rugs for your friends and family. Keep some extra on-hand in your gazebo for people to help themselves to in order to make themselves extra comfy.
If you’d like a more structured seating option in your garden gazebo, you could gather some old pallets and place them in your gazebo; cover them in large cushions and beanbags – the rustic and charming look of pallets will add to your relaxed atmosphere, whilst providing a proper undercover seating area for your guests. If you’re feeling particularly handy, why not try out one of these DIY pallet garden furniture ideas.
Keeping with the informal feel means providing soft lighting without too much structure or strong lines; candles are the obvious choice but with cushions and blankets scattered artfully around, this could be a concern. If you are going to use candles for a bohemian feel, why not hang some in lanterns from your gazebo roof? Just be extra careful about the flames.
You could also design your own quaint paper lanterns simply using a paper bag; you can set your paper lanterns on the floor with battery powered candles in them, taking away any fire concern. All you need is a simple paper bag (in a range of colours if you can find some) and you could even cut some decorative shapes into them to create a pretty, twinkling effect. These paper lanterns can be dotted around your garden gazebo and also along pathways to illuminate the way.
For this relaxed party, you’ve already provided your guests with cozy blankets so that they can keep warm as the sun starts to dim and evening sets in. However, nothing quite says ‘relaxing with friends’ like a bonfire. This will depend on your garden, and we wouldn’t encourage you to scorch your grass for the sake of your party! However, if you are able to have a bonfire somewhere in your garden, you can move the party there and even supply some marshmallows for everyone. If a bonfire simply isn’t feasible, though, you could source a fire pit to allow you to still have the beauty of a roaring fire, without the damage that it could cause.
You can hope that your guests bring instruments to entertain themselves (and you) with, but just in case, some extra garden party accessories should be on your shopping list. There are some wonderful garden party lawn games available, including the quintessentially English game of croquet! Alternatively, why not get everyone giggling with crazy golf for your garden.
No relaxed garden party is complete without the right drinks station. Old trunks are quirky and characterful, and will add to your home-spun and relaxed vibe, so why not accessorise your garden party with some old fashioned trunks adorned with tablecloths? These can act as freestanding bars, so you can decorate each one with different drinks pitchers and glasses (or why not mason jars) meaning your guests can simply help themselves throughout the evening.
Don’t leave your gazebo walls and roof undecorated, either! A garden gazebo offers a fantastic opportunity to include hanging flowers, bunting, ribbons, and most anything else you can think of. For a relaxed garden party, some pretty bunting will perfectly set the scene. If you have hanging flowers (or want to add some for your party) keep the flowers simple but bold so that you’re not adding anything ‘fussy’ into your garden gazebo decorations, but you’re still benefitting from that natural pop of colour. Picking a feature flower such as Gerberas or Sunflowers will also allow you to include these in other elements of your party, such as having a vase of them on some of your trunk-bars and painted onto your mason-jar glasses.
The most important thing for you to focus on for your garden party is to have fun; by thinking ahead of time about all the little elements and ways that you can use your garden and your gazebo, you can be sure that when the party rolls around everything will simply slot into place. Having a cohesive feel to your garden party decorations will mean the night keeps its atmosphere and everyone can relax into the evening with you.
Keep an eye on our LOFA gazebo articles for the next installation of our summer garden party decoration guide; don’t let yourself panic about getting your gazebo feeling just right this summer. For more tips on how to make the most of your gazebo, even when you’re not hosting a lovely night for your friends and family, take a look at our article on must-have gazebo accessories.