How to Decorate Your Backyard for a Summer Barbecue – 22 Amazing ideas for inspiration
Summer’s here, and the time is right…for grilling up the meat! (Or veggies, or Impossible Burgers or whatever you prefer!) But for a lot of folks who relish hosting their friends for hot dogs and burgers, the grill is only one part of this perfect summertime equation. You’ve also gotta get the space looking and feeling just right for the vibe you’re seeking.
It’s easier than you might expect to get your backyard looking great for a summer shindig. That might mean choosing the perfect decorations, or it might mean picking up your craft tools and making something awesome! Follow along as we show you 12 cool tips for equipping your backyard for the height of BBQ season.
- Offer plenty of seating.
People at your party will want a reasonably comfortable place to sit, enjoy their food and talk with friends and family. Thus, seating should be one of the first aspects you figure out when planning a summer BBQ. Lawn chairs are the standard choice, but you could also go for some non-traditional seating choices that fit the theme, such as hay bales. Pro tip: If possible, add a little extra seating in case unexpected guests show up.
- Decide on a color theme.
Before you purchase other decorations, think about whether you’ll want a particular color theme for your party. The red and white gingham that most people associate with picnics and BBQs is a classic for a reason, but it’s also hardly the only game in town. Red, white and blue are obviously popular for the Fourth of July, and any country of your choice’s colors make fantastic decorations all summer long. (Brush up on your color theory basics — they’ll aid you in making the best selection.)
- Get your silverware looking sharp.
You can do better than a boring old basket of plastic forks and knives. Instead, give guests a little something special by bundling your silverware (even if it’s the plastic kind). It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. A napkin wrap is a perfect option for putting a little bit of a personal touch on your silverware bundles.
- Choose some fun family-style serviceware.
Most barbecues serve food family-style, meaning in large vessels such as serving platters or bowls. This can be one of your key opportunities to add your stamp to the look of your barbecue! Decorative trays and bowls are always great for serviceware, but you can get creative, too. Ever considered serving beverages out of a wheelbarrow full of ice instead of a cooler?
- Use Mason jars for cups.
The summer barbecue and the Mason jar cup are a natural fit together — casual but classy and fun but funky. (Plus, have you held one recently? They just feel good in your hand!) Grab a set of Mason jars before the cookout and set them out for guests to enjoy with punch, lemonade or any other beverage you might be serving. Mason jar glasses with handles are also widely available now if you want to provide your guests with something that’s extra easy to grip.
- Give your table a centerpiece.
Even less formal dinners can use a great centerpiece! There are oh so many options when it comes to fun summer centerpieces, and many of them you can DIY using a few simple craft tools such as a pen knife and cutting mat. Flowers and greenery are perennially popular options for inclusion in the centerpiece, as are patriotic themes or favorite sports teams. Try using similar themes throughout your table decorations, as well. It looks awesome when everything matches the centerpiece!
- Give your guests fun hats, masks or other things to wear.
It’s always fun to dress up a little bit for a party, so why not make it easy for your guests? Party hats are one answer that lots of people love. There’s something inherently kind of hilarious about them, and we’re here for it! Other folks like to add masks or funny costume items to their parties. These are always a ton of fun for taking great photos that everyone will treasure for years to come. (Themed face masks are also a great option for increasing your barbecue’s COVID safety.)
- Choose some themed disposables.
Most people opt for disposable plates and cups at a barbecue, and there’s an amazing variety of themes available when it comes to these summertime party essentials. Grab some food-themed disposables to get tummies rumbling or sports-themed disposables if you’re celebrating the Olympics or the NBA finals.
- Add lighting if you’ll be going past dark.
Even the long days of summer sometimes aren’t enough time for a good BBQ, which is why some of the best cookouts stretch long into the night. That also offers a great opportunity to get some cool lighting into your backyard to keep things lit all night long! Lots of outdoor decorators go with string lights hung overhead, which are great for their even lighting and versatility.
- Hang decorations overhead.
Speaking of going high, summer cookouts were made for bringing out the hanging decorations that flutter in the breeze. Get some streamers in a cool pattern or ones that are inscribed with a message of your choice. Balloons, of course, are always tons of fun as overhead decorations as well. You might even throw in a pinata for an instant party starter!
- Decorate your lawn.
On the other hand, you might choose to decorate from below instead of above, which is when lawn decorations come in handy! There are tons of easy ways to decorate your lawn for a party. You might add decorative signs that fit the theme. Lawn lighting also offers some excellent illumination choices.
- Think about options for controlling bugs.
Stinging, biting, buzzing bugs — who needs ’em? Not your cookout, which is why you should consider including some bug control measures to help your guests avoid the pests. Citronella candles and/or torches are a classic (although you should be sure to observe summer fire safety rules with them) and bug zapper devices are another effective choice.
A summer party is the perfect opportunity to create lasting memories with friends and family. With these tips, your BBQ is sure to be one to remember!