How To Plan an End-of-Summer Soiree with The Hidden Garden



Summer is starting to wind down but here in LA we still have plenty of sunshine left to enjoy. With plenty of people who want to enjoy every last drop of summer, they will be thrilled at any invitation to leave the house.

So, keeping safety measures in mind, now is the time to throw an “End of Summer Soiree,” to celebrate the turning of seasonal tides.The number of reasons to celebrate health, friendship, good food, and summer are higher than ever. 

Take a peek at these 5 pointers on how to throw a successful soiree and give The Hidden Garden a call when you’re ready for your floral decor!


1. First things first. Guest List.

While you probably want to invite everyone you haven’t seen for ages, keep in mind we’re still recovering from (and still a part of) the COVID pandemic. Depending on your needs, this list can come down to those who are vaccinated, willing to wear masks and the likes. However, if you have a large outside space, then you may invite at your own discretion.

Make sure to account for kiddos who may come with!

Remember, you shouldn’t host more than you(r house) can handle; especially if you live somewhere that doesn’t have a sprawling backyard or predictable weather.

If you’re worried about weather (or just scorching heat), make use of the spaces you have. People tend to gather where there is food, so spread your food around.

Have charcuterie boards in the kitchen, grilled food out on the patio, beers/beverages in the garage. This will cut down on too many people staying in one place and allowing them to float around.


2. Food

“I wake up to eat.” -me.

Is food not the reason we really go to parties? Ok, the second reason... after friends. But there’s nothing more hanger-inducing than getting to a party and the food not being ready for another 2-3 hours.

No friend, we are coming in Prepared.™ 

Now that you’re hosting, you’re going to set up everything beforehand. Before we prep your food, however, you get to decide what theme you want! 

Are you going the safe route and doing hamburgers, veggie dogs, and summer salads? Maybe spice it up a little and include fresh citrus flavors in Mexican dishes? Perhaps you want to offer a giant grazing table (those are always the coolest)?

This is your time to shine! Choose something creative that you’ve done before. I do not suggest trying something brand new before a party. If it doesn’t go well, you might be left with hungry, impatient guests and a $200 pizza order on the way (yes, I may be talking from experience).

Pinterest is a great place for some themed ideas if you’re stuck on this step. Make sure to include an option for those vegetarian/GF friends and a personal tip, always include fun, nonalcoholic drinks for those who are driving/not drinking!

Now that you have your theme chosen, you are going to your local grocery store/farmers market and prepping everything you need beforehand. Cut up and wash your produce. Season and refrigerate your meats. Create your charcuterie boards and make sure you have those separate foodie options ready to go. It may seem like a lot of prep time but this will create free time on the day of your soiree to spend with your guests.


3. Decor!

Personally, this is our favorite part of planning our parties.  

Chances are that you’re not really one for plastic party decor and we’d be right there with you. Do yourself a favor and go more earth-friendly by decorating with florals and paper products.

The good thing about being CEO of The Hidden Garden for over 20 years is that I’ve seen it all. There really isn’t a wrong way to decorate with florals!

Regular summer shindig? Sunflowers, hydrangea, and billyballs are our go-to. 

A pastel party? Dahlias, roses, and dusty miller.

Sunshine soiree vibes? Bright peonies, Pink Floyd Roses, and eucalyptus.

Here are some of the theme’s we’ve decorated for:

  • Whimsical Wildflowers
  • Lilac + Pink
  • Peony Perfection
  • BBQ Party
  • Green & White Garden Party

You have the power to create the perfect bouquets to match your theme! Head to our Pinterest to see some examples or give us a call and we’ll help you curate the soiree florals of your dreams.


4. Entertainment

And no, we don’t just mean watching the kids fight over floaties. Here are our top 5 favorite forms of entertainment:

  1. Planning a trivia night (always a hit)
  2. Having a solid summer playlist going
  3. Card games/ tarot reading/ board games smorgasbord
  4. Karaoke (offer at your own risk)
  5. Pool party (if you have one). No pool? No worries! Yard games are always a solid go-to and still some of our favorites (just try and beat me at croquet).

You can make this as budget-friendly or as detailed as you want. Other ideas could include: painting parties, hiring a cover band to play, setting up a photo booth, creating an outdoor “theater,” or straight up just having a bonfire with s'mores! Any of these options are bound to bring friends back for more time with you in your home. (#hostesswiththemostest)

The options are endless for any budget level- You just need to think outside the box!



5. Small details

Not spending enough time thinking of the smaller details can end up being a bigger deal on the day of your soiree. Thinking about the things that may affect you now will help you be prepared for later. Here are a few examples:

  • You’re planning on setting up outside but you know you have lots of mosquitoes. Citronella will keep bugs away and you can easily decorate them to keep with your theme without worrying about being eaten alive.
  • You hired a cover band to play and as they’re scheduled to start, they realized they don’t have power access for their amps! Do you have them in a place where that’s an easy fix? Make sure to plan that out when booking!
  • If it is a sweltering day, you might want to offer your friends a reprieve from the heat. Do you have a shaded space or a garage you can use if push comes to shove? Flexibility is a superpower.

Planning a soiree may seem like a lot of work and brainpower. While it does take quite a bit of consideration, don’t let this deter you! The devil is in the details and if you can cover them, you WILL have thrown the most successful End-of-Summer Soiree party of 2021. I promise.

Have friends bring a disposable camera (#throwback) and make amazing memories together. This is, after all, a chance to eat good food, hang with your favorite people, and enjoy the last bit of summer together. 


Often, our mental health suffers when we don’t take care of ourselves, do things that WE are passionate about, and see those that we love. 

Gone (hopefully) are the days of only sitting at our home office desks, wearing our sweats for the third time this week, and asking your dog to grab you another seltzer. 

Take this chance to re-energize your creative side! Pinterest has exactly 1 million ideas on where you can start if you need more help planning (including our page). You deserve to be surrounded by friends, family, and beautiful flowers. 

Give The Hidden Garden a call today and let’s get your soiree started.

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