In the South, natives are known for their country “isms” like “hey y’all” and “bless your heart,” of course. But one thing people tend to forget about the South is their class and sophistication in various traditions. One of the biggest ways southerners show they care is through what most call Southern Hospitality.
Southern hospitality is a way of welcoming someone and making them feel at home. It can be shown in many ways like gifts or acts of service, but one of the top ways southerners like to show hospitality is by welcoming guests into their home, especially for parties and get-togethers.
With spring and summer approaching, and the cold weather fading away, it’s time to bring your outdoor hosting skills back up-to-date. Whether you live in the South or not, here’s how to host an elegant backyard garden party like a true southerner.
Hosting a Garden Party Like a True Southerner
Invest in Beautiful Patio Furniture
Having a garden party isn’t necessarily a reason to buy a full-on collection of patio furniture, per se, but if your furniture is outdated, and you plan on hosting a garden party, then it’s the perfect reason to invest.
Patio furniture isn’t a purchase you just make on a whim… It’s a purchase that requires thought and consideration. Your patio furniture is an extension of your home’s indoor living space so you should make your selections wisely. Everything from a complete outdoor sofa and loveseat collection to a dining table and chairs, elegance and sophistication as well as comfort are going to be the big determining factors for your patio furniture selection.
Make Sure Your Lawn and Garden is Lush and Trimmed
Call it a glorified picnic if you want, but no one is going to want to dine in your yard or have anything you have to offer if your lawn is overgrown. Traditionally, with garden parties, the attire is classic and sophisticated, and with an unkempt lawn and garden, it will look a bit on the tacky side, and that’s the complete opposite of what you’re trying to do with your garden party.
Make sure your yard is trimmed and fresh mulch or soil has been poured to give your lawn and garden that fresh, crisp look. This is something you can easily do on your own but if you start seeing signs that your lawn is unhealthy, then you’ll want to hire professional lawncare services. Things like brown patches, mushrooms, weeds, or even footprints after you’ve walked in your lawn all mean your lawn needs professional help to get healthy.
Always Serve Sweet Tea
Sweet tea is a southern beverage classic. And we’re not talking about the tea that comes in a powder in a can, although you can serve that if that’s all you have prep time for. But to serve sweet tea like a true southerner, you’re going to need to whip out your deep pot and put your tea bags in there to steep and serve to your guests. This will show how well you know the perfect balance of sugar to incorporate for the perfect batch of southern sweet tea.
And the best part about sweet tea is that it can be served during a brunch party or dinner party! All around, tea is the perfect beverage, no matter the occasion! Some southerners will even get fancy with their teas and incorporate different fruits and turn it into fruit tea!
Serve on Elegant Dinnerware
For a garden party, you want your dinnerware to be floral or solid white; It’s just the southern and classy way to go. If you’re going to do floral dinnerware, keep your napkins white. If you’re going to do solid white dinnerware, you’ll want to go with a floral printed cloth napkin. It’s your garden party so you’ll want to play around with your arrangements but be sure to do this way ahead of time so you can know exactly how your table will look.
Floral Decorations are Key
If you’re going to host a garden party, it’s only right that you incorporate the very things that come from gardens… Flowers. Ideally, you would want to incorporate flowers from your own garden, but if you don’t have any flowers to pull, that’s okay, simply go to your local grocery store floral department and purchase flowers there. Everything from bouquets to place settings, you can turn your backyard garden party into one that no one will ever forget.
Garden parties can be quite easy to pull off but you have to have the right tools in place to set the scene, and flowers aren’t the only thing you need. Proper seating and decorations are what’s going to not only give off that southern charm that southerners are so well-known for but it will give people that southern hospitality to make anyone who attends your garden party feel right at home.