Since I have so much free time right now (joking!), I figured I’d go all out and host a fall dinner party. In all seriousness, Emmett and I have hosted a fall gathering every year since moving to Utah, and I couldn’t bear breaking tradition- especially since our patio is all set up. No excuses! I loaded the space with fall hues, plenty of candles, flowers, pumpkins, beautiful tableware, and a fun lantern installation. Click through to read all about it, get the DIY details, and see how it went…
*This post is sponsored by Walmart. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that allow us to create unique content while featuring products we actually use & enjoy!
Given our friends have seen our patio multiple times over the summer (we host often- remember our 4th of July BBQ?), I wanted to switch things up in the backyard. I made some easy updates like swapping the rug, adding a tablecloth to our existing patio table, along with new napkins and chargers, and I also bought gorgeous brass and black flatware.
Perhaps the most fun part of our fall patio is the lanterns and floral installation that hangs from our pergola. I went all out with this easy DIY! Thanks to Walmart Home, I was able to score a bunch of paper lanterns and faux wisteria for a budget-friendly project that makes a BIG impact. If you’re looking to update your outdoor space or patio as the weather changes, check out their DIY & Done page for fall inspiration indoors and out.
I just used clear fishing line to string up the lanterns. The wisteria was even easier to install! I ended up weaving it through the pergola slats and since it has bendable wire inside, it stays really well and looks pretty natural.
I also potted some GIANT mums. If you missed my fall window planter box tutorial- check that out here. They add one of my favorite fall colors, burnt sienna, plus plenty of texture to the patio.
In addition to mums, I also put together a quick and easy floral arrangement for the bar cart. To make things feel a bit more formal, I used these gorgeous linen cocktail napkins. I bring them out for all of our “fancy” parties or special occasions because the stitching is so pretty.
Believe it or not, it’s already getting pretty chilly here at night- to the point where we had to pull out our outdoor heater to be more comfortable. The evening started in the 60’s and dropped into the high 40’s by the end of the night, so blankets and throws were also necessary.
Per usual, our outdoor parties are dog friendly- so I liked to keep the water bowl filled for our furry friends! I still love the dog vignette alongside the bar cart. Although, the dogs were disappointed I didn’t have the beverage bucket out this time around… they typically enjoy stealing ice cubes from it.
To make the tablescape feel extra cozy, I did a lot of layering: lanterns, candles, small pumpkins, a table cloth, table runner, chargers, cloth napkins, brass flatware… the whole nine yards! I love the way it turned out.
I’m also digging the way the geometric rug plays with the pergola slats. It feels like a nice balance that adds a modern touch to our traditional backyard.
I still can’t believe this pretty pergola was here when we bought the house. We’ve taken advantage of this space so much since moving in. We’ve shared dinner more outside than we have inside. Maybe part of that is because we don’t have a finished dining space yet, but obviously we’re in no hurry thanks to this gorgeous spot. I’d rather dine al fresco anyway.
Emmett and I have talked (more like dreamed) about adding an outdoor kitchen area to our patio someday. We have plenty on our plate for the time being, but maybe next summer or the following, we can try to make it happen. As much as we entertain, it would come in so handy… plus it would be a fun design challenge for me.
If you’re wondering what we served for dinner, since the forecast was cooler, I made my favorite chicken pot pie recipe with mashed potatoes. The pot pie is always a crowd comfort food favorite!
I also picked out some red wine because there’s nothing better for a romantic fall dinner party. One of my friends said she felt like she was in Europe on our patio- that’s such a wonderful compliment!
Later in the evening, I brought out dessert- cookie brownie bars! I cheated and bought them because I’ve had zero time since the One Room Challenge started, but I feel like arranging store or bakery-bought treats on a fun platter always makes them feel more special. It’s all about presentation!
I really wish I could leave our patio like this forever, but I know it’s not weatherproof or sustainable for the snowy Utah winter that will be here soon. However, we had the best time using this space for our fall party and I’m thinking we’ll keep it like this for a week before rain rolls in and enjoy it just a little bit longer before I take things down and pack it away for our next patio party in the spring!
If you’re interested in sources, click directly on the items below, or use the links at the bottom of the collage to be redirected…
01: rattan chargers // 02: brass & black flatware // 03: paper lanterns… I bought two sets: this one and this one // 04: faux wisteria // 05: patio heater // 06: scalloped pie dishes // 07: linen cocktail napkins // 08: geometric outdoor rug // 09: napkins // 10: tablecloth
So, what do you think?! I hope my photos captured the magic of this dinner party. It is SO incredible in person and I tried my best to share it as accurately as I could through my camera lens, but it doesn’t do it justice. Is anyone else entertaining this fall before the holiday season arrives? What kind of weekend plans are on your agenda? We’ll be working on house projects. Happy Friday, friends!!