Hosting little parties and gatherings is so much fun. You’re having a little get-together with family and friends in a couple of days, and you’re quite excited. As the D-day approaches, you mentally tick off a list: Invite everyone….check. Make sure the food preparation is on track….check. Outdoor space arranged and well decorated….Sighs. That worrying niggle you’ve been trying to ignore is now at the forefront of your thoughts: “My patio is small! How on earth am I going to successfully entertain people there?”
Well, in this article, I present to you 4 tried and tested tips for successfully entertaining in small spaces.
- Re-arrange your furniture
I know you put a lot of thought into the placement of every piece of furniture in your patio, and I respect that. But you are not going to like yourself very much that day when you realize your guests are looking for adequate space to move around and your furniture is just well…occupying all the available space. In order to create enough space for your guests to mingle and have fun without crashing into anything, stylishly place most of the furniture off to the side; let them occupy the perimeter of the patio. This leaves much-needed space in the center for your guests to move around comfortably.
- No huge or brawny set pieces
The best way to maximize your outdoor space is to replace large furniture pieces with more moderate counterparts. Use smaller outdoor furniture, such as narrow couches and deck chairs. You can add a touch of personality by including floor pillows in the seating arrangement. These come in handy as they are easy to either re-arrange or remove completely during the party, and they also create a more intimate and informal atmosphere.
- There are better alternatives to your patio table
We both know your patio table accounts for up to half of your outdoor space. You can replace it with a counter island in the middle of the patio. And you are wondering: “But that also takes up the same space, if not more!” Well, the island serves various functions unlike the table. You can use it in preparing the food, and then place enough bar stools around it so your guests can sit, eat and have fun. However, if you feel the island would still take more space than you’re ready to give, then you can place a small fold-out table in a center area, place the tray of dishes on top, and everyone comes to pick from it, just like a buffet. A metal cart decorated with a festive cloth can also serve the same purpose. With both, once guests are done eating, the tables can easily be removed to create more space.
If you do decide to stick with your patio table, make sure it is round, as a rectangular-shaped table consumes more space.
With the proper decorations, you can make your space seem bigger than it really is. If you own a small garden, get some fresh flowers and greenery. Place them in vases or any attractive container and strategically position them in your patio. Apart from their earthy fragrance, they would definitely brighten up the space with their vivid colors. Your guests can’t help but compliment you. At least, I know I would.
With these handy tips, entertaining in your patio or balcony would be a breeze. How you go about implementing any of these suggestions depends on your personal taste and preference, the number of guests expected, and the type of gathering you are planning on having.