3 Fresh Themes for a Sophisticated Outdoor Party


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Outdoor venues contribute a relaxed, natural feel to an event — which is probably why they’re becoming so popular for everything from weddings to Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. And although there’s nothing wrong with a casual backyard barbecue, outdoor parties can be sophisticated, too. Here are three themes that can make your outdoor party feel just as upscale as any thrown inside:

  1. Classic Elegance

    A backyard party can be incredibly elegant, as long as you bring in the right elements. Start with a traditional white tent or sailcloth tent, and choose double table linens in tone-on-tone colors like white and ivory or two different shades of light blue. Chair cover rentals can disguise ordinary rented chairs with sweeping fabric, and a simple dance floor — sans lasers or mirror balls — offers the best space for people to show off their dance skills. Splurge on elements like lighting and flowers to add sparkle and color.

  2. Whimsical Chic

    Everything from the starburst designs that top sailcloth tents to their rustic wooden poles says fairy tale. Don’t try to make things feel too manicured, choosing large bouquets of wildflowers in simple containers over perfectly arranged roses and small, grouped tables instead of neat rows. This can feel chaotic if you don’t choose some focal points, so play around with the arrangement until you have a space that feels effortlessly comfortable. To keep this theme from becoming juvenile, try pairing a primary color with its pastel component (red and pink, for example, or bright lemon yellow and a pale cream) when choosing a color scheme.

  3. Modern Nautical

    Pushing this theme overboard can make it feel cheesy, so there’s no need to plaster anchors everywhere. Instead, use your inspiration less literally: Think crisp fabrics, gleaming whites, deep navy blues, smart stripes and richly colored woods. Even though you might automatically think of sailcloth again when it comes to tent rentals for a nautically themed party, consider a traditional square frame tent for its clean lines. When it comes to the dance floor rental, see if your rental company has a warm, medium-toned wood available that can mimic the same woods used on luxurious yachts.

What do you think of these theme ideas? What are your recommendations for tent rentals and other outdoor party-planning staples? Share your advice in the comments!

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