Summer is hotting up, and what better excuse to get friends and family around to enjoy the weather. If you’re thinking about hosting a party, take these five top tips on board.

#1. Set the date and spread the word

Summer is notoriously busy. With festivals, weddings, and holidays, it can be tricky to find a time that suits everyone. Choose your date, and then spread the word as soon as possible. The more notice you can give people, the higher the chance they’ll be able to make it. There are various ways you can let people know about your party plans. Set up an event on social media, or send an email or text invitation. You could also send invites through the post. Make sure you give an RSVP date. It’s important to have a good idea of numbers for catering purposes.

#2. Prepare your garden

If you haven’t paid your garden much attention of late, now is the time to get out there and have a good clear out. Tidy up, mow the lawn and throw away any rubbish. Do some weeding, and jet wash the patio, drive, and decking. Get your outdoor furniture out and give it a clean. Touch up any chipped paintwork and varnish fencing and wooden chairs.

#3. Choose your theme

Nothing sets the tone for an awesome party like a great theme. There are loads of popular options you can choose from, or you could go for something original. Embrace the Hawaiian tropics, or host an Olympics-themed bash. Go back in time to the swinging 60’s or the roaring 20’s. Dress like your favorite celebrities or channel Coachella or Glastonbury. If you’re not sure about themes, have a look at some ideas online. Make sure your guests are aware of the theme. If you want people to dress up, make this clear on your invitations.

#4. Get decorating

Once you’ve got your theme, you can start thinking about how you’re going to decorate and dress the garden. Match props and accessories to the theme. If you’re going for a tropical Hawaiian party, for example, inject plenty of bright colors. Hang bunting, and adorn exotic cocktails with flamingo straws and multicolor umbrellas. Get the grass skirts and floral garlands out and blow up some inflatables for the pool. If you don’t have a pool, you could look around for the best portable hot tubs. Light a fire pit, fire up the speakers and get the tunes pumping.

#5. Food and drink

Any good party host will make sure their guests are fed and watered. Give yourself plenty of time to plan catering for your event. Bulk buy to cut costs and ask guests about dietary requirements. Barbecues are an excellent idea for summer parties. You could also do an al fresco buffet or afternoon tea for a sophisticated daytime gathering. Set up some tables and chairs or go for hay bales if you’re hosting a festival-themed party. Fill ice buckets with bottles of beer and soft drinks and make a bar. Create your own signature cocktails and decorate accordingly.

Are you planning a summer party in your garden? If so, hopefully, these five tips will ensure you host a night to remember.