"That time of year" is quickly approaching again. If holiday entertaining is already on your mind, you know there’s no such thing as beginning to plan too early.
Don't be intimidated by the planning. Entertaining guests over the holidays can be a breeze and even blissful with just a little forethought.
Whether you have a small patio space or a large outdoor space, you’ll want to begin by looking at your seating options. Aim to create groupings that encourage conversation, whether you invite two or 20 people to a holiday gathering, you'll want a comfortable space for your guests to spread out. If outdoor dining is in your plans, determine if a round or rectangular table meets your guest’s needs. And if you’re on a deck or balcony, you might consider adding more height to your choice of tables and chairs.
Take Stock of Your Style
Do you thrive on time spent in the kitchen, or do you prefer a pot-luck with friends and family? Do you want a large celebration, or a quieter evening of good food and drinks? Does the prospect of roasting marshmallows around an outdoor fire pit appeal to you, or would you rather curl up near the flames with a warm blanket and your special someone?
No one style is right for everyone, and you might swing from one to the other, depending on your mood. We firmly believe that the holiday season is a time to enjoy life – however that works best for you. And enjoying one’s home plays a role, too, regardless of the space you have. Entertain a group in a large outdoor space, or encourage coziness and good conversation with a smaller patio space.
Paddy O' Furniture's Mission Sling seating collection is durable and adaptable. It's comfortable and attractive, blends seamlessly with both modern and traditional architecture, and moves easily from poolside to covered patio. With furniture this adaptable, you can be as spontaneous in seating arrangements as you wish.
If your patio is on the smaller side and your permanent furniture cannot accommodate everyone comfortably, Paddy O’s powder-coated aluminum frames are easy to move and allow for quick rearrangements to suit any occasion. Partner a Peninsula sectional around a Bodega fire pit with a pair of comfortable club chairs and you're ready to entertain a crowd. A backless bench is another simple solution that can easily seat several children and adults.
Our sofas, chairs, cushions, and outdoor tables are designed to withstand the weather and retain their good looks from season to season, and our distinctive Bliss Cushions, available in a wide range of colors, resist stains, water damage and fading – and they come with a full five-year warranty. Take comfort in knowing your outdoor furniture will hold up under nature’s extremes and withstand the “oops moments” of spills that can happen during any gathering.
It's entirely possible to entertain guests over the holidays without undue effort! The goal, after all, is to enjoy the moments, no matter what your holiday celebrations entail.
Decorate and Entertain Simply
This year, why not wrap tree trunks or patio columns with strings of low-voltage white lights to achieve an evening glow without too much effort? Accent lighting can be part of the night’s ambience from mid-October through mid-January. For some, it’s a year-round look. Another easy idea is to trim potted evergreens or plants with simple ornaments or colored streamers – keep the decorations low-key and use color to set the tone.
Stock up on soft throw blankets in bright colors or patterns, and let them "spice up" your backyard scene and reduce the evening’s chill. Accent your seating with pillows for additional color and comfort.
Fall and early winter evenings, when the air is crisp and cool, are perfect for backyard get-togethers. If you want a more blissful holiday gathering, our advice is to keep it small and simple. Comfort rules! Keep your preparations to a minimum so you, too, can enjoy the evening. Plan a simple dinner for four or six – which takes much less effort than a cocktail party for 20! Check out our balcony tables with coordinated seating. Your guests will never need to balance a plate of food on their laps again.
Find Furniture that Fits Your Lifestyle
Paddy O' Furniture, with multiple showrooms in the greater Phoenix area, as well as a location in Nashville, is your go-to source for patio seating, outdoor dining tables, fire pits, replacement cushions, and all the other necessities and niceties to make your outdoor space a retreat for every season.
And, if you're looking for lifestyle ideas that can heighten the fun this holiday season, we've put together some ideas for you:
Plan a potluck: But don't assign specific foods to your guests – if everyone brings dessert, just smile and enjoy it! However, if you have a friend who plays the guitar, or neighbors who like to harmonize for the fun of it, ask them to be part of the evening’s entertainment. If performers are scarce, how about a twilight scavenger hunt? Warn your guests ahead of time and keep the list of items short to limit its time frame.
Watch the "home team" play: If you have an outdoor television, invite a crowd to cheer on your favorite football team. Or, go retro and listen to the game on the radio as you enjoy your favorite adult beverages, hearty snacks, and a big pot of chili! Ice cream and cookies are always great desserts!
Schedule a game day: Play silly games that are fun for children and adults alike – charades, cornhole, sack races, or egg relays. Set up card tables for board games, dice games, or dominoes. Make it a soup and sandwich get-together, and it'll be a big hit with young ones and their parents.
Get into the spirit with a costume party: Costumes aren't just for Halloween! Pick any theme: books, movies, or history, and ask guests to come as their favorite. As an alternative, host a "pajama party" and after a simple dinner, enjoy a sing-along with S'mores around the fire pit.
Paddy O' exterior design consultants will help you transform your backyard, your covered patio or deck – even your front porch – into the kind of welcoming space you've always dreamed about. Visit one of our locations to see the possibilities that will work perfect for you.
There's no need to move indoors as the days get shorter and the temperatures get cooler. Put your feet up, grab a colorful throw, a warm mug of cider, and a favorite book or magazine. Relax and enjoy your cozy surroundings. We hope all your holidays are happy!