From picnics to parties: 3 outdoor ideas to try

Love the great outdoors? Sainsbury’s designer Louise Rynehart shares her favourite pieces for picnics, barbecues and al fresco parties.

Pretty picnic

As the weather starts to get warmer, everyone wants to get out and about – suddenly Facebook is full of people enjoying the sun! If you want some photos to be proud of, make sure you set the scene: this picnic look is a fun, fresh and girly mix of summer colours and patterns, perfect for a bite to eat in the park right through to ‘glamping’.

Whether you’re heading off for a posh picnic or to a music festival, the wicker hamper is just right for carrying your snacks and lending a little vintage charm. And if you’re simply staying in your garden to enjoy the sunshine, you can still capture that sense of summer adventure with this quirky bicycle ornament (below).

Get the look



Bicycle decoration, £10; wicker hamper, £15; coloured solar ball string lights, £12. Find all these instore


Relaxed barbecue

Sometimes, you want to keep things simple and classic, and that’s where this stripy dinner range really comes into its own. I love the mix of blue and white, it reminds me of family camping holidays in France.

The large platter makes a great centrepiece, whether you want to cover it with cured meats and crudités or pile it high with sausages straight from the barbecue, while the bowl will hold more than enough salad for everybody. Why not mix in a few contrasting pieces of tableware too? It all adds to that summery feel.

Get the look


Salad bowl stripe, £3, see instore; large drum barbecue, £30; goblet, £2.50, see instore


Party time

You know summer’s really started when you can schedule an outdoor party without having a rain-safe ‘Plan B’ – I wouldn’t advise that yet though! Provided there are no showers on the horizon, these paper honeycombs are just the job – they’ll add a pop of colour to any location. I’ll definitely be using them for all my summer parties.

Stripes are everywhere this summer and this outdoor tableware offers a quirky take on the trend with a pretty shade of pink. I’m going to mix and match this range with other prints as well: polka dots would add a playful edge, for example. For another twist, try using a watering can as a vase like we have in this picture – it’s such an easy idea, and one you could try inside too. Roll on the summer!

Get the look



Flourish Antique Rose watering can, £20; paper honeycombs, £3; extra large platter, £6. Find all these instore

Tip of the week

Why not light the way to your garden party with outdoor candles? A large lantern either side of your path or doorway will create a real sense of occasion.