4th of July Backyard Cookout
Mary Huddleston, master delegator, and Katie Jacobs, foodie and DIYer, combine forces to create an epic 4th of July barbecue.
Set the Scene
A long farm table on the pool deck set with Americana flare sets the stage for a southern supper just before Independence Day fireworks.
Party Smarter, Not Harder
These two Nashville natives, Katie Jacobs of Styling My Everyday and Mary Huddleston of Mrs. Southern Social, show that by taking careful consideration in deciding what to do yourself for an event and what to delegate to professionals creates a stress-free affair that every party host or hostess can appreciate.
When it comes to hosting events, delegation is key. By utilizing the talented resources available, you can actually enjoy hosting beautiful parties and celebrating life creatively. Entertaining others, especially in your own home can be very stressful, but by delegating some of the work to professionals, you can elevate that stress and find pleasure in the process as well as in the party itself. By delegating pieces of the party that you don’t want to manage or do yourself, such as flowers, favor tags, etc., you’re free to spend time on the things that actually bring you joy when hosting others, such as cooking, baking and styling the table.
Make An Impression From Start to Finish
We also enlisted help with all of the beautiful paper products to our friend Caroline, of Sweet Caroline Designs. She created a custom “Americana Collection” for our celebration using modern red, white, and blue designs that could be mixed and matched together. This included the invitations, menu cards, tented food and beverage signs and favor tags which she shipped to us ready to go. Each of the items are customizable so that you can re-create our look for your own event.
Rent Instead of Investing
For this summer fete, we used both modern and vintage décor to create a fresh look that’s festive but not overdone. We focused on delegating the “big-ticket items,” by renting the tables, chairs and many of the tabletop items, such as the dinner plates, glassware and silverware. All the rentals were delivered and pick-up from our event, so the set-up and clean-up were a breeze. We then mixed in splatter-ware pieces, which are making a comeback, from Crow Canyon. The red, white, and blue enamelware combination is perfect for a 4th of July party, as they keep the overall look festive and casual. They are also shatterproof, which is especially helpful when hosting outdoors near a pool.
Play Up Simple Layers
We also streamlined the table décor by using red and white paper runners and placemats from Hester & Cook which are all disposable/recyclable. Forget renting linens or worrying about clean-up, these products make it easy to add layers to a tablescape without a large investment or any upkeep.
Do It Yourself
Instead of hiring a florist, we keep the centerpieces for the table simple. We used large vintage blue mason jars filled with masses of all-white hydrangeas clustered down the center of the table and then added in American flags for a classic red, white, and blue patriotic look.
Keep Your Appetizers Coordinated
What better to welcome guests to your Independence Day party than with a towering charcuterie platter of red, white, and blue food? Meat, cheese, fruit, nuts, and sweets in Americana red, white, and blue is a playful twist on an entertaining staple.
Arrange a Space for the Kids
Setting up a special area just for the kids is a must. A wagon full of fun drinks and ice, watermelon, pinwheels, flags, mason jars of lemonade, and bubbles not only provide plenty of entertainment but also makes the children feel part of the party.
Dress For The Occasion
When it comes to dressing for an outdoor event in the south, light and airy fabrics are a must. Both the kids and adults wore dresses and jumpers from Pink Chicken, which provides numerous mommy-and-me options in the cutest patterns and designs. Dresses take a lot of the guess-work out of what to wear for an event, so they are always a go-to.
Enjoy the Main Event
Everyone will enjoy the decor but guests always remember the food. A backyard barbecue menu doesn’t have to be boring, or strictly traditional. A relaxed event like this is the perfect opportunity to serve dinner family-style. Passing around large trays of fresh flavorful food, like Edamame and Corn Succotash and hamburgers with Bacon Jam, encourages conversation and fellowship.
We also love to place Le Grand Courtage mini champagne bottles out for everyone so when the fireworks begin, they can toast The Land of the Free.
Elevate the Basics
By topping grilled Hot Dogs with Homemade Pickle and Parsley Relish, it elevates a childhood favorite to a dish that all your guests are sure to dive into.
Stay On Theme
Go Out with a Bang
Some kids just don’t appreciate fancy desserts. Keep it super easy and watch how excited they get (even the adults will line up to steal the kids' confections). Simply roll the sides of ice cream sandwiches in red, white, and blue sprinkles for a festive fan favorite.