Logo

Party time: decor for a dazzling summer bash

PUBLISHED: 10:00 26 August 2017

LSA International Moya Grand Design champagne serving set, 12 glasses, 250, available from Black By Design.

LSA International Moya Grand Design champagne serving set, 12 glasses, 250, available from Black By Design.

Archant

You can dazzle your guests with just a few delicate touches. Gabrielle Fagan drills the experts for their top decorating flourishes.

Cylinder vases used with only one leaf placed in the water. The look is simple and very pretty. Featured in
Decorate for a Party: Stylish and Simple Ideas for Meaningful Gatherings by Holly Becker and Leslie Shewring, published by Jacqui Small. Cylinder vases used with only one leaf placed in the water. The look is simple and very pretty. Featured in Decorate for a Party: Stylish and Simple Ideas for Meaningful Gatherings by Holly Becker and Leslie Shewring, published by Jacqui Small.

Summer gatherings can be the most memorable of the year, especially if they’re spontaneous, relaxed and filled with special touches and decorating ideas that your friends and family won’t forget.

“When it comes to decorating for a party, it’s not about playing super hostess or laying out the best china or the most expensive crystal,” says Holly Becker, who with Leslie Shewring has put together a brilliant guide to decor for all occasions, Decorate For A Party.

“It’s about creating a little magic and hosting joyful celebrations in your own home, where you can do as you please and really be imaginative about your look.

“Most important is adding character and love with creative, thoughtful and fun decor, as guests feel important, cherished and welcome.”

Summer soiree

“We love a soft tactile look, which is a warm mix of organic materials and textures, handmade details and a touch of vintage glass,” says Holly.

“This elegant style would be perfect for an indoor or outdoor evening, maybe to celebrate a forthcoming wedding or simply just to mark summer and all its pleasures.

“Aim for a calm palette of chalky, bleached colours, plenty of flowers in clear glass vases and plain white or strikingly patterned cloths for tables. For a more rustic feel, leave wooden tables plain and allow glassware to star.”

Top tip: Tie single blooms to individual napkins with ribbon and harmonise by laying more lengths of ribbon down the centre of a table to create a focal point. Wrap party cutlery in beautiful pieces of fabric (use off-cuts) that could double as napkins.

Nature’s table

“We love the challenge of creating something special and memorable out of very little and keeping an overall look inexpensive and relatively simple to prep,” says Holly.

“Being inspired by nature and using foliage, leaves and plants is a lovely way to bring flair to a summer dinner party. This can conjure a country garden atmosphere, or for a more exotic look, use tropical foliage. Add gold details by using a metallic pen to write guests names or messages on large, glossy leaves.”

Top tip: Make a striking centrepiece by placing a single large tropical leaf in a clear glass cylinder vase filled with water. A group of three vases will look effective. Use plain brown wrapping paper to make a wall poster menu; write details of the courses in black and pin to the wall with a tiny posy on each corner.

After dark

“Nothing says party more than the disco ball,” says Clare Harris, managing director at Talking Tables. “A celebratory classic since the Seventies, the disco ball has come of age, featuring on paper plates as well as disco ball-shaped cups.

“Glittering foil curtains (gold or silver, £8.49) are another party classic that have made a comeback, creating the perfect Instagram-worthy backdrop for your party pics.

“Frankly, cocktail parties are not the time to be a minimalist - layer up your bar and table with gold foil straws, party poppers and photo booth props, then bring the look up-to-date with a plug-in neon light or light box to show guests exactly what to expect from their evening.”

Top tip: Don’t forget to organise games - they’re a great way to break the ice. Talking Tables has Prosecco Pong, £14.99, where players attempt to throw or hit ping pong balls into glasses of Prosecco, and opponents must drink the contents of any glass in which a ball lands.

Decorate for a Party: Stylish and Simple Ideas for Meaningful Gatherings by Holly Becker & Leslie Shewring is published by Jacqui Small, £20

Property search


e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Other Hampstead and Highgate property news

David Walliams is selling Noel Gallagher’s former Belsize Park home

Britain’s Got Talent judge and author David Walliams is selling his Hampstead home for 5.35million with Marcus Parfitt.

Column: Simon Gerrard on choosing the right area to live in

Good fences make good neighbours goes the saying, but fellow residents can have an impact on the enjoyment of your home. North London estate agent Simon Gerrard shares his tips for finding the perfect location.

Seven tips for creating a wellbeing boosting garden

Matt Keightley, the designer behind the Feel Good Garden at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show, reveals how to make your own outdoor space more soothing. By Hannah Stephenson

Nine ways gardeners can be more waterwise this summer

Want to save your plants and save water? Go easy with the sprinkler and embrace these expert suggestions instead, says Hannah Stephenson

For sale: New show homes open at Highgate development

Two new show apartments have opened at a luxury development in Highgate.

Elegant cottage formerly home to renowned poet, A.E Housman, now for sale in Highgate Village

A cottage in Highgate Village where the renowned poet A.E Housman once lived is now available to buy.

Comment: A War of the Roses? The challenges of dealing with property and divorce

Trevor Abrahmsohn, MD at north London agents Glentree, writes about his encounters with divorcing couples selling the marital home

Home of the week: Handsome 5 bedroom property in Hampstead perfect for a family

On the market for the first time in many years is this attractive, substantial detached double fronted family house located in a prime location.

Fancy owning a Picasso? It’s not impossible says Belsize Village gallery owner

Emma Rice talks to Andrea Sylvester about art and how we could all potentially own a Picasso or a Chagall, if that’s what we love

Callender Howorth interior designers transform Grade II-listed home in Hampstead

Mark Howorth, the founder of luxury interior design firm Callender Howorth, tells us how he brought elegant Indian influences to a period property on NW3’s Heath Drive

Primrose Hill artist Michal Cole on transforming her paintings into woven masterpieces

“It’s actually bringing these paintings back into what they used to be in the Renaissance times – as tapestries.”

Home improvements: How to make a rustic hanging rail

Fancy getting stuck into a creative project? Try your hand at woodworking and hang your coats on this minimalist marvel.

Most Read