Kick off fall with a backyard bonfire party

30 September, 2014

The last warmth of the summer is waning, and the temperature is slowly but surely dropping back down into sweater weather. We recently discussed a few precautions you should take when setting up your backyard firepits, but now that they've got a safe space on the patio, it's the perfect time to utilize them! 

Bonfires may seem like they're a dime a dozen, but there are few better ways to kick off the beginning of fall than with a party that showcases your outdoor decor. 

​The firepit
Firepits are inherently more convenient than their in-ground counterparts, making them an incredibly seasonal backyard asset. Besides providing a centerpiece for patio parties during the cooler months, fire bowls also make beautiful aesthetical statements. When it comes time to organize your outdoor space, think of firepits the same way you would think about outdoor coffee tables – they're a place for you and friends to gather.

The decor
Creating an area conducive to hosting a backyard bonfire starts with outdoor seating.The number of chairs or sofas you will need entirely depends on how many people you envision using the space. Outdoor sectionals make arranging comfortable place to sit around the bonfire a breeze, while patio dining chairs can create a few extra spots in a pinch. If you're feeling ambitious, set up a few chaise lounges for star gazing later in the night.

Don't forget to keep a handful of fleece blankets on hand for guests to wrap up in when the temperature drops. While the heat of the fire will likely make the blankets unnecessary this early in the season, they are a great way to make sure that friends and family comfortable come October.

The party
While you can never go wrong with classic bonfire staples like s'mores and hot chocolate, hosing a backyard get together a great opportunity to flex your party-planning muscles. Up your bonfire game with fun ideas like invitations that come with personalized marshmallow-roasting sticks or serve up a smattering of campfire cocktails, such as mulled cider or s'moretinis if you're feeling particularly adventurous. Hot dogs roasted by the fire can easily take a gourmet turn when garnished with caramelized onions, and guests can keep their hands warm with a mug of spiced pumpkin soup.

Above all, backyard bonfire parties are a great way to reap the benefits of a beautiful outdoor space. While winter may indeed be coming, there is no reason all of your gatherings have to head indoors when the leaves start falling.