40 Amazing Ideas For The Best Summer Party Ever

You can't do it the same way you did last year. You just can't.

summer party ideas
Nicole Franzen

Finally, the moment we've all been waiting for: Summer. And with it, longer days, warmer weather, and more excuses to indulge in ice cream and sip rosé outside. If this puts you in the mood to throw a summer party, you're in the right place. Make sure yours is the kind of get together no one wants to leave with these forty epic summer party ideas, whether you're hosting poolside, in the garden, or on a rooftop.

Courtesy of Sugar & Charm
Throw A Themed Party

This colorful carnival is not your average dinner party.

See more at Sugar & Charm.

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Courtesy of Sugar & Charm
Make A Spiked Lemonade Bar

A bit of an upgrade from your childhood lemonade stand.

See more at Sugar & Charm.

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More: 45 Summer Cocktails You Should Try

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Nicole Franzen
Go Wine Tasting

Host a wine tasting event in your own backyard or round up your friends and rent a bus or limo to take you a wine tasting tour of local vineyards.

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Courtesy of Sugar & Cloth
Make Mini Cheese Boards

Perfect for an outdoor summer picnic.

Get the tutorial from Sugar & Cloth.

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Courtesy of Sugar & Charm
Add A Garden Cocktail Bar

The best use for herbs yet.

See more at Sugar & Charm.

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summer party ideas
Cheetah Is the New Black
Head to the Beach

There's a picnic and there's a beach picnic. Gather up some friends for a potluck picnic with a beachside view for an unforgettable summer Saturday.

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Nicole Franzen
Host a "Game Day"

Put out a deck of cards for any guests who'd rather stay on land. You could also put out some less conventional card games, like tarot cards and bring in a fortune teller to entertain guests.

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Have A Floor Party

Your guests will totally feel right at home.

See more at DesignLoveFest.

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Nicole Franzen
Rent a Boat

Cool off on the water with a group of friends by renting a boat for the day. The more the merrier (and less expensive).

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Sugar and Cloth
Add Unexpected Vases

A hollowed pineapple is the summer vase you never knew you needed.

Get the tutorial at Sugar & Cloth.

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Cheetah Is the New Black
Set Up a Flower Arranging Station

Set up a station for guests to arrange their own bouquets. This will give them something to bring home and remember the party by.

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Create a Beautiful Centerpiece

Succulents add an unexpected contrast to delicate blooms. (Even better if you can sub in a colorful scarf for a table liner.) Or, for an equally creative summery tablescape, place flowers in small containers of varying heights and styles.

See more at B Lovely Events.

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Throw a Pool Party

Don't have a pool in your own backyard? Go all out by renting a hotel or local pool for the day. Or research which hotels in your areas have pools and see if any of them every host parties—then round up a group of friends to purchase tickets and attend together.

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Serve Poptails

Combine dessert and drinks into one frozen treat with these adults-only popsicles.

Get the recipe from Bakers Royale.

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Nicole Franzen
Go Camping

Round up your friends and head off the beaten path for a weekend of camping.

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Nicole Franzen
Go Sailing

Host a sailing party. Learn how to do it yourselves, or sign up for a lesson.

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13:13 Photography
Have a Photo Shoot

A photo wall is cool and all, but when you're outdoors, your backdrop is pretty enough. Hang frames from trees and add a basket of props to ensure you've got the most 'grammed party of summer.

See more at Style Me Pretty.

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Nicole Franzen
Swap Stories

Host an adult version of a campfire. Invite your friends over for s'mores and storytelling! Bonus points for scary story swapping.

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Sweeten Your Wine

Drop a popsicle into your glass of white wine, but be warned: You'll want to try every flavor in the box before summer ends.

Get the recipe from Good Housekeeping.

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Place Citrus on Place Settings

With a handwritten name, they become summery place cards.

See more at Apartment 34.

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Erin McGinn
Freeze Rosé

For a twist on a summer staple, freeze your rosé in an ice cube tray, then blend it up the next day.

Get the recipe from Style Me Pretty.

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Layer Lanterns

Hanging them at different heights brings a moody vibe to your backyard.

See more at Elizabeth Anne Designs.

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David Tsay
Set Up a Tent

Here's the super chic way to give your guests a break from the sun.

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Brittany Ambridge
Swap Out Your Cushions

The easiest way to upgrade your backyard for summer without making your bank account cry? Swap outdoor seating cushions with something light and crisp, like sky blue.

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Johnny Miller
Prep Your Home Bar

Stock up on small-batch flavored simple syrups in addition to top-shelf liquors, mixers, and garnishes for the ultimate mix and match cocktails.

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outdoor dining table
Ngoc Minh Ngo
Host a Garden Party

Pack in extra settings at a long table with a pair of rustic benches.

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fire pit
James Merrell
Start a Fire

S'mores are a must.

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Courtesy of Carolyne Roehm
Make Flower Arrangements

Clusters of small arrangements, extra-tall ones (as long as they don't block out people's faces as you try to hold a convo) — any burst of color really livens up a party.

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One Kings Lane
Use Name Cards

If you pick the seating arrangement, you can control the drama factor.

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swinging daybed
Francesco Lagnese
Pile on Pillows

Cover a daybed, couch, or hammock with patterned pillows to make a cozy nook perfect for an outdoor nap.

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