AUTHOR: BEC OF 'FOR EVERY HEN'
Imagine, for just one moment, that you’re in the middle of a lush, green garden. You’re sprawled lazily across comfortable cushions strategically placed beside a low picnic table. The décor is breathtaking and the food mouth-watering. Your best girlfriends are there; sipping on champagne, giggling, playing games and chatting away. All whilst taking in their gorgeous, tropical surrounds.
It’s an oasis filled with friends.
And it’s the perfect setting to celebrate your bride-to-be’s upcoming nuptials.
Thanks to a beautiful collaboration between Lovely Occasions, Print & Party, The Sweet Society Co and Nicole Barralet Photography, this day-dream can become a reality. Read on and learn how to create this stunning tropical themed party that will have your guests filled with awe and excitement from the moment they arrive!
SETTING UP YOUR TROPICAL THEMED PARTY
USE COLOURS WISELY
Having and sticking to a colour palette is key to pulling off visually stunning events.
In the case of this tropical party; using dark blue, bright blue, hot pink, yellow, white, a selection of greens, and a touch of black and gold will result in a beautiful setting suitable for any kind of pre-wedding celebration.
Blankets are a MUST at a picnic – even at the most stylish ones! Layer dark blue rugs on the grass; making sure you cover enough space to fit a table and seat each of your guests. Once you’re happy with the rug placement, add a couple of low-to-the-ground wooden picnic tables; carefully placing them at the centre of your sea of blue. Items such as these can be sourced from friends, family, second-hand stores or businesses who hire out products for events.
SET THE TABLE
Now it’s time to bring your table to life.
Start with some white cloths and a tropical themed runner; before decorating with woven mats, bright pink vases, golden pineapple dishes, boutique tableware (whether you use your own or purchase is up to you) and black cake stands.
You can find the exact party supplies (plates, cutlery and napkins) used for this shoot by clicking here.
Flowers tend to add a touch of class to events, as demonstrated perfectly by the addition of floral arrangements to this theme. Create your own beautiful, tropical vibes with a mix of bright flowers and a selection of greenery – simple yet so effective!
Oversized, hot pink balloons will add some fun and colour to your bridal shower without taking away from the luxe feel. Have them fit seamlessly into your tropical theme by attaching fronds or other greenery to their strings.
Finish off your tropical décor by strategically placing mix and match cushions around the base of each wooden table. Prints such as these are not only fun and pleasing to the eye, but also look comfortable; thereby drawing guests to the table, encouraging them to sit, mingle and relax. Once again, items such as these can be sourced from friends, family, second-hand stores or businesses who hire out products for events.
When it comes to the food, your best bet is to stick to options within your colour palette (outlined earlier) or to those that compliment the theme as a whole (i.e. tropical foods). Some examples for this particular bridal shower include:
You can also incorporate some delicious baked goods by adding themed accents (such as palm leaf fondant) or using your theme colours (i.e. green icing, bright pink cupcake wrappers, etc.).
‘The Sweet Society Co’s’ wonderful palm cupcakes are a fantastic example of food fit for a tropical feast!
And while we’re speaking of food, it’s not really a party unless there’s cake!
Be the hero of any sweet-tooth by incorporating a bright dessert that’s so stunning no-one will want to make the first cut! The elegant and bright design below is a fantastic example, with Diana of The Sweet Society Co explaining that “As the centrepiece for the picnic table I wanted the cake to really stand out. The two tiers added height and the tropical leaves in edible wafer paper and cascading orchid flower topper created a focal point”.
Handy Hint: Cake and other baked goods also make fantastic favours. For example, keep the cake as a centrepiece until the very end of the celebration, at which point you can cut slices and hand out to guests as they leave.
This theme calls for fun, fruity flavours and bright colours! Think anything from fruit juice or punch, to cocktails, champagne or wine. There’s also the refreshing option of water infused with sliced oranges or lemons – perfect for a hot day.
No matter what you decide to go with, just remember to offer a selection of beverages that cater to all situations. Some of your bride-to-be’s friends may be pregnant, for example, so ensuring that you have non-alcoholic options will make sure all guests are happy and hydrated!
Now that you have the type of beverages to serve under control, it’s time to think about how you will present them.
The addition of beautifully designed labels takes standard champagne bottles to the next level. “In keeping with the light, fun mood for this type of party, the mini champagne labels and party stickers featured a beautiful watercolour tropical leaf design and fun flamingo and ‘Aloha’ gold writing to add to the luxe feel” – Anna, Print & Party.
You can create your very own matching party stationary (for this or any other theme) by clicking here.
Another great tip for presenting your drink station and/or drinking supplies is to include a show-stopping piece such as a beautiful, golden pineapple. This could be used to store reusable straws, cutlery or even flowers!
FLAMINGO RING TOSS
Everyone loves a bit of ring toss; especially at an outdoor event (it’s actually quite addictive once you get started!). Rather than going with the stock-standard option, though, keep the game tropical by using Flamingos as your targets.
For instructions on how to make your own DIY Flamingo Yard Toss game, click here.
Provide guests with pieces of fruit (such as bananas, they’re easy to mould!) and ask them to sculpt either a person, a person’s body part or an object. The requested sculpture could be of the bride, the groom, a ring, etc. The winner is the best sculpture as chosen by your bride-to-be!
Handy Hint: Homemade play-dough is fantastic for this game. Make it in your theme colours using this recipe!
PHOTO BOOTH & PROPS
Take advantage of your stunning surrounds by using nature as your backdrop.
Find an area that’s full of greenery; add a pop of colour with some bright pink jumbo balloons/fabric bunting and, alongside a Polaroid camera, set out some fun tropical themed props (think along the lines of oversized glasses, lei’s, funny Hawaiian shirts, and large pink hair flowers - all of this and more can be found at your local op shop!).
During the bridal shower you could even ask the girls to stick some of their Polaroids into a book and write special messages next to them. This will create a beautiful keepsake for your bride-to-be, whilst the remaining photos will become fun mementos for your guests.
Handy Hint: can’t find an area suitable for a backdrop? Consider using material with tropical prints instead.
Stock up on pineapples, grab a coconut and get ready for some bowling fun!
To play, set up the pineapples as you would actual bowling pins; walk a few meters away and place your coconut (or coconuts) on the ground, ready for the girls to have a game.
For more game ideas that could be adapted to the tropical theme or played as is, click here!
THEMED PARTY FAVORS
So, you’ve wowed your guests with your overall set-up and they’ve had a wonderful time socialising, drinking, eating and playing games. But unfortunately the party has to come to an end.
Take this opportunity to show them that, despite the actual celebration being over, the tropical vibes can (and will) continue. Gift your guests a perfectly packaged chocolate favour (such as these beautiful designs by Print & Party) that sum up the incredible day they just had!
And if chocolate’s not your thing, don’t stress! Guests won’t be able to wipe the smile off their face when presented with stunning little gift boxes filled with delicious baked goods:
THE FINAL RESULT
By using the tropical party ideas outlined above, the resulting set-up will be stunning, fun and adored by all. Roxanne of Lovely Occasions puts it perfectly in saying “I love the modern and sophisticated twist this picnic has on the tropical theme. The gold elements bring a touch of luxury while the bright pop of pink still keeps it fun and fresh, perfect for a bridal shower luncheon with the girls!”
If you’re in Queensland, LOVE this theme and want your celebration to look exactly as pictured, Lovely Occasions offer this on trend Tropical Luxe Picnic Package along with matching tropical party supplies – find it by clicking here. You can then complete the look with 'The Sweet Society Co's' baked goods.
For those of you in other states, Print & Party offer their stunning designs Australia-wide, and the gorgeous party supplies offered by Lovely Occasions can also be shipped to your door!
Nicole Barralet Photography
A Brisbane based wedding, boudoir and personal branding photographer.
If you enjoyed the tropical picnic inspiration in this article, you may also enjoy the following: