A few weeks ago, I planned a pop-up outdoor dinner party, and it was SO cute and I'm excited to finally be able to share it with you. I have always loved hosting and having people in my home around the dinner table, but the beauty of a dinner party is that it can be done ANYWHERE! I hope this inspires you to grab whatever supplies you have at home, go outside, and bring people together. It doesn't have to be fancy (but of course, sometimes fancy is fun!); it just has to be with people you care about and want to spend time with- that's when the dinner party magic happens.
I'll be linking all supplies used at the bottom of this post, but these camping tables have been a game-changer for me and I've gotten so much use out of them after purchasing around 4 years ago!
You might remember that I had a goal of #20in2020 and I was working on it UNTIL COVID hit us! Now that things are starting to open back up, I'm working my way back up to hosting the next dinner party in my home. Until then, I thought an outdoor dinner party would be a great way to gather, but people would still feel a little more comfortable. Since I was missing actual dinner parties, I went all out and made this setup a little more intense than it needed to be (Ha!) but you definitely don't need tables or china to get together.
There ARE, however, a few things that are ESSENTIAL to a good outdoor pop-up dinner party. Whether you're going all out, or picnic-style is more your vibe, you need a good group of people (more on that below!) and a good beverage. Lemonade, iced tea, infused water...whatever you want! This week, I went with a Peche Mignon! I first had the drink at a local Dallas restaurant, Mercat Bistro, then my friend Chandler recreated it at home, and I decided to keep making them and keep them on-hand! You use a sphere mold and fill it with muddled fruit, then top with orange juice. I'll link the sphere mold below, but you could also easily use ice cube trays. THEN you top with Champagne. Easy and fun! AND best part: the ice keeps your drink cold!
Huge thank you to my friend Lara for helping me set up! Don't be afraid to ask for help! Ask friends to bring supplies or food items to contribute. A dinner party is a great way to get to know someone you're acquainted with but haven't had the chance to have conversations at length with them. One of my favorite dinner parties I've ever attended was when I was a guest and I didn't know ANY of the other 9 attendees. We had conversation starter questions that prompted some very real and very raw emotions. A few of us cried (ahem, me. Ha!) and it was such a unique bonding experience. I still keep up with a lot of those people even though we were all so different! Since then, I've loved trying to prompt deeper conversations at dinner parties and it's always fun to see who will share and who won't. Dinner parties are such an amazing way to connect with people and that's why I love them so much!
For you next dinner party (hopefully soon now that COVID is lifting!), I encourage you to use time around the table as a time to connect on a deeper level. Have fun and enjoy each other's company, but don't miss an opportunity to encourage, uplift, or learn about someone.
I kept things simple with the menu and this salad DEFINITELY came from a bag, so don't be too impressed! I love a good entertaining shortcut, like putting premade food onto real dishes ;)
Who can you invite to dinner today?! Think about how you can use something as simple as dinner to connect with people in your life!