For the uninitiated, the D.C. summer can be brutal – think excessive sweating and scurrying from one air-conditioned place to the next. But, with the heat also comes one of our favorite activities, entertaining friends and family. Because there are few better than getting a group of your favorite people together for good food and drinks on a warm summer day, and one person who also understands the joys that can come with entertaining this summer is Jaclyn Smith. Partnering with Kmart, she has helped design an outdoor living collection that is full of elegant and timeless pieces that will be sure to impress your guests and be useful for entertaining the entire year-round. To help you in planning your next summer fête, Jaclyn shared a few of her favorite on the dime tips for summer entertaining that are bound to make a splash at your next event!
1. Collect bright and bold colored throw pillows. Throw pillows add the perfect pop of color to any occasion without spending a fortune.
2. Don’t throw away your old dining set, rather repurpose a few chairs with a new coat of paint and create additional seating for guests.
3. A successful trick for fighting those flies and mosquitoes is to cut lemons in half, put several cloves in the lemons and put them in strategic places.
4. Potted roses in clay pots are beautiful for your outdoor table. It’s economical and you can later plant them in your garden. Daisies and hydrangeas also look beautiful in clay pots for your table. Gardenias add a lovely scent. Tie ribbons around clay pots for added color.
5. Use layers of colorful table clothes, some round, some square so all the colors show. When you’re blending into nature anything goes.
6. Use colorful grosgrain ribbons to tie your flatware and napkins together.
7. Take an area rug outside to your patio.
And when asked what tricks she uses to host a flawless get-together, Jaclyn shared the following six tips that will guarantee your next party goes off without a hitch!
1. Always prepare your dishes in advance. The best part of a get-together is spending time with friends and family. By having dishes prepared in advance you are able to enjoy more quality time with your guest.
2. Having a theme in mind will make the decorations and menu fall easily into place.
3. Use your own china and glass wear. I love the way white dishware looks mixed with colorful plates. Use flatware at your outdoor table instead of plastic. Plastic breaks with BBQ chicken.
4. As a host, it’s important to serve your guests their first beverage. After that, have a bar area set up so your guests are able to refill their glasses as needed without having to worry about who needs their drink topped off. I like using decorative trays to organize the bar area.
5. Turn off the harsh outdoor lighting. Use candles, patio lights and paper lanterns.
6. Music is so important to a party, so carefully choose your selections depending on your guests and the type of party. Music creates the mood.
So, don’t let the D.C. summer heat get you down, with these fun and easy tips you will be the host/hostess with the most. And for more tips from Jaclyn make sure to follow her and check out her page at http://www.shopyourway.com/JaclynSmith, as well as her outdoor living line with Kmart.