While weekends in Europe, trips to Las Vegas and nights out on the town are certainly popular choices among bride tribes, here at Butlers with Bums we believe a hen party at home can be just as special, and this summer, it’s all about the garden party!
There are many reasons to host this summer’s hen party in your garden: maybe the bride to be is not a fan of wild nights out, or perhaps you’re in charge of a group of girls with wildly disparate budgets and need some basic but elegant ideas to accommodate them. Whatever the reason, garden parties are quickly becoming a favourite choice among hen groups for a multitude of reasons, including their flexibility, intimacy, and ease of adding those special touches.
In order to help you plan the perfect summer soiree this hen party season, we’ve compiled a list of our top tips that will ensure your party is truly unforgettable.
1. Plan for all Weathers
If there’s one word to describe the great British weather, it’s unpredictable. It is not uncommon to experience all four seasons in a single day. Therefore, it is important to plan for all weathers ahead of time to avoid having your glorious garden party disrupted by torrential downpours or scorching temperatures.
With the UK experiencing an average of 170 days of rain each year, it is critical to have a wet weather plan in place. If the heavens decide to open, guests will require a place to seek refuge. If your home isn’t big enough to accommodate a large group, renting a marquee or a gazebo is a great option.
Likewise, consider having a plan in place for when the sun goes down and the temperature drops. While copious amounts of blankets may suffice, outdoor heating is an excellent option for keeping guests warm and cosy.
If, on the other hand, the weather turns out to be exceptionally hot, make sure your guests are protected. If your garden lacks natural shade, parasols and umbrellas are a great alternative, and providing SPF for the group is a must!
2. Pick an Activity
If you are planning to throw this summer’s hen party in your garden, be sure to plan one or two activities to keep your guests occupied. Whether you opt for a classic hen party activity or a more sophisticated one, the possibilities are endless! Listed below are some of our favourite garden hen party activities, but feel free to modify them to fit your own party theme.
Throwing a traditional tea party is an obvious choice for a garden hen party. Not only is the theme elegant and classy, but it is also quintessentially British! Decorate the garden with flowers and vintage decorations, grab some pretty china plates, cake stands and teacups and have everyone wear their most beautiful dresses. To add a naughty twist to this classic tea party, why not hire a buff butler or two to help pour the champagne and serve the cake? Sunshine, baked goods, finger sandwiches, champagne, tea, and a couple of naked men—what more could a bride-to-be want?
Life Drawing Class
If your garden has plenty of privacy and an area away from prying eyes, a mobile life drawing class can make for a truly unique garden hen party activity. After all, what could be more enjoyable on a summer’s afternoon than sipping a glass of bubbly while drawing a beautiful naked man as he lays in the grass in front of you? If you’ve never drawn before, don’t worry – our life drawing classes are designed to be fun and light-hearted.
Outdoor Movie Night
Nothing beats snuggling down with a bottle of wine and some tasty nibbles to watch your favourite movie with your girlfriends, so why not make it an alfresco affair this summer? When the sun begins to set and everyone starts to unwind for the evening, an outdoor movie night can be a great option. Grab a projector, some picnic blankets, or some comfy garden chairs, and chuck on the bride-to-be’s favourite film. You could even decorate the garden with fairy lights, prepare some popcorn, and pour some wine for a truly magical evening under the stars.
3. Prepare some Games
When you’ve got a mixed group of the bride’s friends, things can get a little awkward, and it can sometimes be difficult to get the conversations flowing. Therefore, we believe a hen party isn’t complete without some fun games to break the ice and get everybody giggling.
If your garden is on the larger side, why not relive your younger days by organising an old school sports day competition? Think egg and spoon races, hula hoop competitions, space hopper races and tug of war. Twister and Giant Jenga are also great options for some competitive fun.
However, if you really want to get the party started, why not plan some classic hen party games that will bring your party to life with laughter, cringes, and heart-warming memories. Pin the Junk on the Hunk, Mr. and Mrs., and Prosecco Pong are all great options that will guarantee lots of laughter amongst the group. To see our full guide on hen party games, check out our blog.
4. Plan the Menu
A garden hen party would be incomplete without some tasty treats and delicious drinks! When planning the menu, it’s important to consider what works for the time of day, the number of guests and the dining space. If you don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen all day, consider serving simple foods that are easy to prepare ahead of time. It is also critical to consider everyone’s individual tastes, as well as any dietary requirements.
If you do decide to go down the tea party route for your garden hen party, serving afternoon tea is a must. A typical afternoon tea consists of one tier of sandwiches, one tier of cakes, and one tier of scones or teacakes. However, you could also include pastries, petits fours, or biscuits. And, of course, you cannot forget the pot of tea and the bottle of champagne!
A charcuterie board is a great choice for a garden hen party. Not only are they completely customizable, but the possibilities are limitless. Serve some scrumptious meats alongside cheeses, crackers, fruits, nuts, jams, and other accompaniments, and pair with a great bottle of wine to boost the whole garden hen party experience.
Because late morning to early afternoon is the ideal time of day to organise your garden hen party, it’s only natural that you indulge in some classic and delectable brunch items. This can include anything from eggs benedict, bagels and avocado toast to pancakes, waffles, pastries and french toast. And of course, no brunch is complete without some delicious drinks! Mimosas are certainly the classic brunch beverage, but they’re not the only choice. Bellinis, Bloody Marys and Sangrias are also great options. You could also serve a selection of juices to pair with some bubbly: pineapple juice, mango juice and grapefruit juice are all excellent choices.