If the experts are to be believed (!) the dreaded COVID-19 is here to stay – at least for the foreseeable future. Which can mean only one thing – social distancing is set to be part of our new normal. We’re already experts at the socially distanced supermarket shop, and now’s the time to become a pro at the socially distanced picnic. With the August Bank Holiday on the horizon there’s no better time to brush up your entertaining skills for a party alfresco.
Lucky for us there’s another expert on hand to help – bring in Liz Linkleter, featured in a recent issue of Grazia Magazine. A stylist for Erdem Wedding, Liz knows a thing or two about styling things up. She says: The concept of a socially distanced picnic was born out of necessity…A picnic has always been a super-relaxed way to entertain, and now, for me, it’s far more enjoyable than a socially distanced table that can feel stilted and lack atmosphere. It’s easy to do safely, too – each bubble has their own picnic area with their own food and drinks. If you don’t have a garden, you can throw a picnic in your local park. But how do you turn an elegant a picnic into something special?
Set the scene as you would if you were laying a beautiful table. A great blanket is key. Then put together a tray for each group – this replaces the table. Lay each one with enough cutlery, napkins and plates for each bubble and don’t forget flowers for a lovely finishing touch. For drinks, you need something stable, such as a little table or stool, or tray with folding legs. And don’t forget lots of cushions or even pouffes – people can get fed up sitting on the floor for extended periods so you need to make it as comfortable as possible…Your food should strike a balance between simplicity and statement. Go for fresh summery food that you can make ahead and that travels well – nothing too rich that will weigh you down. Drinks are key too. There are many great cocktail companies doing pre-mixed drinks for home delivery that are very impressive. Finally, remember the music. It’s as important as the food and decorations for creating ambience. For a daytime picnic you want something upbeat and fun but not over the top – a mix of summery soul, disco, indie and classic pop work brilliantly. Ready? Time to get this picnic started!
Futon Company says: Whether you’re picnicking in the park, in a communal garden or on a small space balcony, there are plenty of handy hints and ideas from Liz that can really help to bring some alfresco fun to your weekend. And who knew that the humble tray would turn out to be such an all-round wonder woman? (Those of you who read our Blogs regularly will know that we recommend trays for all sorts of things – from an impromptu home-working office tidy, to a play-tray, to a portable cocktail server). All hail our top-tastic tray hero! And one more thing: Our own top tip is to bring along a summer sleeping bag – the perfect cover up for when the sun goes down….