Sustainable Outdoor Entertaining by Laurence Carr, Interior Design

Updated: Aug 7



As we enter the dog days of summer, I am taking advantage of every opportunity possible to spend more time outdoors, either for some restorative moments alone, family meals at sunset, or hosting a small group of (socially distanced) friends for cocktails al fresco. It’s part of my focus on “small but definite happiness” that I discussed in my recent newsletter. 


After so many months of social isolation, like you, I’ve come to realize that there is no replacement for social contact. What are we, as humans, without in-person social interaction in person and the sensory touch experience? The powerful energy transfer that happens between people in-person cannot be replicated through virtual meet-ups, much as we might try. Humans are social creatures. Many scientific studies have determined the positive benefits of in-person communication, showing that social interaction is not just a habit, it’s a health practice! This isn’t to say we should ignore our current climate and get together without restriction. In areas still fighting an uphill battle during this pandemic, we must do what we can to keep socially distant a while longer for the safety of the community.  


But, if you are in a location where restrictions have loosened and you can host a few friends outdoors, with adequate social distance, I encourage you to invite them over and plan a special “reconnection event.” Break out some of your favorite tablescaping accessories, make a simple menu of seasonal hors d’oeuvres or plan a casual grill-out, open a few chilled bottles of your favorite beverage, and catch up face-to-face. And, if you happen to be in a region where stricter social distance is safer, find ways to get creative with virtual gatherings. Perhaps you can plan ahead with a few cherished friends to each create the same dish, and set a lovely table for one while you chat with friends via video call on your tablet. A shared experience, distantly! In the spirit of small, meaningful gatherings, I’ve compiled some of my favorite outdoor accessories and tabletop products – all from sustainable sources, of course… because everything becomes more meaningful when you know you’re doing what you can to contribute to the wellness of our earth. And all incredibly stylish, too – because nothing elevates a get-together like decor with WOW factor. Let’s have a look, shall we? 


OUTDOOR ACCESSORIES


1.- Sunnydaze Rippled Slate Indoor/Outdoor Water Fountain 2.- Sunnydaze Contempo Square Outdoor Propane Gas Fire Pit 3.- Medium Carthage Pierced Covered Lantern 4.- Hourglass Plant Pot in Various Sizes 5.- Inflatable Pool Bar Unicorn 6.- Carrie Portable LED Lamp in Brushed Brass 7.- Honeydew Towel / Scarf 8.- Brightech Ambience Waterproof LED Outdoor String Lights 9.- BBQ Pro Salt Cooking Block 10.- Trefle Outdoor Pillow



TABLETOP PRODUCTS


1.- Bibol Tchon Salad Bowl 2.- Newly Goods Terra Vase 3.- Farmhouse Pottery Silo Place Setting 4.- Slash Objects Recycled Speckled Black Rubber Placemat 5.- Indoor / Outdoor Glassware Set 6.- Stainless Steel Ice Bucket w/ Tongs in Brass 7.- Disposable Wooden Cutlery Set 8.- Mexican Glass Drinking Glasses 9.- Mango Wood Cheese Platter With Knife 10.- Hummingbird Glass Straws 11.- Coro Carafe & Cork Stopper Creating beautiful spaces, making smart, responsible choices, and letting our loved ones know how much they mean to us are all small but powerful ways that we can make the most of the present moment. Because, at the end of the day, the present moment is all we have! 


My wish for you is that you can end your summer on a high note. Find small ways to delight in the little things, look for opportunities for calm within the chaos, and seek connection and camaraderie while spending restorative time outdoors. Be safe, and stay well! 



Laurence Carr is founder & CEO of Laurence Carr Design, an award winning interior design firm in New York City providing full service and e-design services to clients. She creates exquisite holistic interiors that promote mindful living and harmony, while attaining a level of sophistication through layering modern art, furniture, antiques and accents. Born in France, Laurence has 20 years experience in design, the performing arts, and fashion. She has been nationally published and is a frequent speaker and panelist in major industry related events.

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