How to Throw the Ultimate Backyard Bash—Without Breaking the Bank

Maggie Griswold
How to Throw the Ultimate Backyard Bash—Without Breaking the Bank
Photo: Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

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With weather warming up, it’s finally time to entertain outside of the house—breathe in some fresh air and party in the breeze. Whether you have a small backyard, huge backyard or just a small patio, there are so many ways to decorate for spring and summer parties. By using super cute outdoor decor from HomeGoods and TJ Maxx, you’re sure to have the ultimate backyard bash—without spending a lot of money, of course. Decking out your backyard doesn’t have to be expensive, and actress JoAnna Garcia Swisher’s incredible outdoor entertainment set-up is proof.

The actress worked with HomeGoods to create a jaw-dropping backyard look. From an adorable picnic area to an Instagram-worthy dining set-up, Swisher has all her entertaining bases covered (for less). In order to get the exact looks from Swisher’s amazing backyard decor makeover, you’ll have to go to an actual HomeGoods store—they don’t sell online. But, we found some super cute ways to get the looks with items available online at TJ Maxx (HomeGoods’ sister store). So have no fear, the outdoor entertaining inspiration is here! Plus, Swisher even has some tips for how she styled her backyard on a budget. Summer parties, here we come.

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

1. Create a fun picnic area

JoAnna Garcia Swisher says, “HomeGoods is a constant source of inspiration for me, which is why exploring the aisles are my go-to place when I need a creative boost. One find can inspire the theme of my next party, a reason to celebrate or re-decorate. For example, I came across an adorable watermelon basket and loved it so much that I ended up planning an entire watermelon party for me and the girls!”

Get the look:

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Beach Icon Picnic Blanket, $16.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Oversized Watermelon Pillow, $20 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Made in Indonesia Large Rattan Basket, $19.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

2. Set up the ultimate poolside bar (or snack and drink table)

Swisher gives us her tips: “My favorite addition to my backyard is the bar, it’s perfect for entertaining and the entire 7-piece set was just $999.99. I’ve turned the bar into a self-serve station with big drink dispensers that are a beautiful focal point but also super practical, especially these as they have a durable galvanized base and are easy to fill with any type of beverage!”

Get the look:

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Indoor/Outdoor Hi Ball Cups, $12.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Carmen Sean Counter Stool, $39.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

3. Make the coolest movie-watching area

“Our yard is flat (which is rare in Los Angeles!), so when I spotted bohemian-inspired outdoor rugs in fun patterns at HomeGoods, it sparked a new vision for our movie screening and fire pit area. We use our fire pit year-round so these new rugs and a few durable, knit floor pillows and poofs were a great way to cozy up the space and add extra seating,” says Swisher.

Get the look:

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Tommy Bahama Outdoor Cushions, $24.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Made in Turkey Outdoor Geo Area Rug, $59.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Ferns Pillow, $19.99 at TJ Maxx

 

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

4. Cozy up your sitting area

Swisher explains her vision: “With all the entertaining I do, I needed a designated area where family and friends can sit together. When I saw a four-piece wicker set that included a love seat, two chairs and a coffee table, I knew they would be the perfect pieces to create my outdoor living space. I accessorized with colorful yellow and pink pillows, a blue patterned outdoor rug and stylish wooden lanterns. I hung faux ceramic planters to add pops of greenery in the space.”

Get the look:

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Petra Stripe Pillow, $19.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Set of Two Outdoor Accent Tables, $119.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Made in Portugal Hanging Planter, $14.99 at TJ Maxx

 

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Harry Van Gorkum for HomeGoods.

5. Set the prettiest table for your guests

Swisher says, “It doesn’t take a lot of money or effort to create amazing moments with family and friends! One of my favorite finds for entertaining are these pastel blue and pink melamine plates that look like real ceramic dishes but were seriously only $9.99 for a set of 4. And,I don’t have to worry about them breaking! They are going to be my go to for our family dinners!”

Get the look:

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Crackle Melamine Appetizer Plates, $6.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Double Old Fashioned Glasses, $9.99 at TJ Maxx

STYLECASTER | Outdoor Decor Ideas For Throwing the Ultimate Backyard Bash

Madrid Elegance Tray, $12.99 at TJ Maxx

 

Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.

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