I love outdoor entertaining in the summer months. It’s always so nice to sit outside with friends and family, breathe the fresh air, enjoy the garden, and dine al fresco.

Even though summer gatherings may be more about social distancing this year, that doesn’t mean you still can’t add some pretty touches to your patio and outdoor space. I think it’s just as important to set that pretty table for your own wellbeing as it is to make guests feel welcome, don’t you?

Darling dishes

Let’s talk melamine dishware. It’s light weight, holds up really well, cleans in the dishwasher and there are no worries about chips or breaks when you’re using it outdoors because it doesn’t break. There are so many pretty designs now in melamine….some actually look like stoneware! Here are some of my favorites:

I fell in love with this 18 piece set mixed blue pattern set because I like to mix patterns in all areas of decor and a set like this makes it look effortless. It’s great that you get 6 of each piece (many sets only give you 4).

Don’t you love the texture and color of this weathered turquoise dinnerware set ? It almost looks like an antiqued or verdi gris metal, doesn’t it? Taco and margarita night, anyone?

And if you like the southwestern vibe, this southwestern inspired dinnerware with serving pieces also combines colors and patterns perfectly. This would also look great in a lodge style cabin. I love that the serving pieces are included.

With all of the beautiful images on IG of farmhouse chic, you’ll fit right in with this rustic all white dinnerware set. It has a little imperfection with its texture, but still looks simple.

These adorable fruit slice plates just made me smile. Who doesn’t love big slices of colorful fruit? And check out the coordinating plates below!

Bright and cheery tropical fruit dinner plates are happy, happy, happy. Anyone else hear the Wiggles’ song, “Fruit salad, yummy yummy” in their head? 🙂

From my personal collection:

I own and LOVE this talavera tile inspired entertaining set. I use it with my blue and white dishes at our beach house.

It looks festive, colorful, and while the Talavera look isn’t exactly coastal, the colors blend really well with vibe at the beach. It’s shades of blue/white/coral…and that’s how I’ve decorated my home.

They’re easy to clean and make a lovely presentation.

Here’s the matching talavera tile inspired platter set . I love using these platters for taking things off of the grill, or putting out a dessert tray.

Tabletop foundations

Tablecloths really do make a difference…especially if your patio table has seen better days. Tie the colors of your tablecloth into the season, the occasion, or the colors of your garden. I put together some summertime looks below.

This festive striped tablecloth just screams summer to me. I love the colors and the stripes. You can have a lot of fun working with this because there are so many colors to play with in the design!

This blue and white floral tablecloth will look so pretty on your patio! It’s fresh and feminine. I love to pop this look with a bright pink or yellow bouquet from the garden.

For a farmhouse inspired look , this grayish taupe and cream stripe cloth will be right at home with weathered servers and galvanized platters.

Ok, SO ADORABLE! This happy gingham tablecloth comes in a variety of colors and probably says summertime picnic and gathering more than any other design.

If you avoid tablecloths because you’re worried they’ll stain or don’t want to deal with the wrinkles after washing, then consider this floral print vinyl tablecloth . Easy to wipe clean and easy to store. And a summertime floral print to boot!

Entertaining Essentials

When you do a lot of outdoor entertaining, then an acrylic drinking glass set is a smart investment. These look like glass, have a nice weight, and you have no worries of broken glass on your patio if one of them drops to the ground.

Elongated serving baskets are something you can never have enough of. From chips and warm bread to a makeshift centerpiece display, there is always a way to find a use for baskets.

What’s not to love about a good charcuterie board? Not just what is on the board, but the board itself. This decorative wooden cheese board with server is a manageable size for serving and for storing.

And if you’re intimidated by the idea of putting together a charcuterie board, check out my video on how to create the best charcuterie spread!

It’s always fun to have a custom cocktail at an outdoor party. Why not try my red and white sangria and serve it up in this decorative 2 gallon beverage dispenser.

I couldn’t resist this set of 3 mice themed cheese knives. They just made me smile!

I resisted acrylic wine glasses for a long time because they always felt so light weight. These acrylic white wine glasses have a nice feel to them and like the tumblers posted above, you don’t have to worry about glasses breaking when you’re outdoors.

Trash Talk

Nothing bugs me more than all of the hard work I put into planning an outdoor party, only to see a big trash bag on the deck for people to use to throw things away. That’s why I think this decorative outdoor trash holder makes such sense. It tucks away into a corner, doesn’t call attention to itself, and gives guests a place to throw things away.

Summer is coming!

I hope we will all be able to gather with friends and family this summer. It’s been a long spring and the thought of being able to have my family over to sit outside and catch up in person is a welcomed thought. When that happens, you can be sure, my patio will decked out (no pun intended!) with pretty things to celebrate. If I’ve learned anything in the past few months it’s that everyday moments are the ones that should be celebrated the most.

From my patio to yours,

Jill