4 summer party ideas to impress your friends

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  • There's a heat wave coming! Who can resist dining outdoors on a glorious summer's day? They don't come around often, so make the moment all the more special with these clever entertaining ideas.

    1. Design a café style menu board

    For evening soirées in the garden, put an old chopping board to a new use – as a chic menu board. Use a chalk marker to carefully write out your menu. Unlike on black boards, these pens can’t be wiped off a porous material such as wood, so use a faint pencil mark to give yourself guide lines before you start. If you would rather not write on the wood, use string to attach a card menu to the board, tying the string around the handle and stand it up for guests to see.

    2. Make handy picnic pouches

    Make packing the essentials for outdoor eating easy with these hand-made picnic pouches.

    1. Fold an A4 piece of brown paper in half. With a sewing machine, use a long stitch to create a pouch.

    2. As you run the stitches up the last long side, neatly slip a little sachet each of salt and pepper under the machine foot, so they become attached to the pouch, too.

    3. Finish the pouch with a piece of decorative string or ribbon and attach a personalised label.

    3. Make a handy bottle carrier

    1. Lay a 1 square metre cloth face-side down, with one corner towards you. Place two bottles on the corner, facing out, with their bottoms about 5cm apart.

    2. Pull the corner over the bottles and continue to roll towards the opposite end of the cloth.

    3. Holding the cloth ends securely, stand the bottles upright. Twist the ends of the cloth above the bottle tops and tightly knot together to form the handle.

    TIP: On hot days, soak the cloth in iced water before wrapping up white wine bottles. As the cloth dries, the wine will be cooled.

    4. Jazz up ice cubes

    These fruity pops of ice are a cinch to make and will take your party drinks from standard to standout delish!

    1. Choose your ice cube tray, shaped ones are more fun e.g stars or hearts.

    2. Place a few fresh pomegranate seeds in the bottom of each.

    3. Fill to the top with water and sit carefully in a freezer drawer.
    Make sure you do this the night before you want to use them.

    [TIP] In a hurry? Use hot water as it freezes faster than cold.

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