It’s National Picnic Week

…and we’ve got everything you need for a stylish spread

It’s National Picnic week and with a brief respite from the rain, we’re making the most of sunny days and heading out for a picnic. Whether it’s an al fresco lunch in your garden or you ‘re heading further afield, we’ve picked our favourite picnic accessories to make sure your outdoor dining experience is a stylish one.

Are you sitting comfortably?

Forget the itchy wool blankets of your childhood picnics – we’ll bet they were an ugly tartan, right? We love French Connection’s chic Poppy picnic rug, complete with matching cushion. Based on their bestselling indoor rug, this mint colourway will bring more than just a touch of luxe to your lunch experience AND it packs up into a handy attached bag so no awkward grappling. If you’re feeling particularly boujis, may we suggest the matching parasol for our fair skinned friends out there? We also love the matching pouffe for those who prefer an actual seat.

Carry On

Next, let’s talk about how you’re going to transport your goods. In our experience, there are those who adore traditional wicker baskets and those who abhor them – like Marmite, there is no middle ground. Here at The Style Life, we are no less divided. While Rivkie loves them, Antonia has never met a picnic hamper that hasn’t caused her an injury while lugging it but in the interests of impartiality, we’ve found options for each side of the great hamper debate.

This traditional style from Oliver Bonas comes in both 2 person and 4 person versions depending on your party size – with crockery, cutlery, glasses AND a bottle opener – let’s face it, how many picnics have you been to where it’s been forgotten? – the hamper also comes with its own handy cool bag inside to avoid limp sandwiches and warm wine.

If you’re of Antonia’s persuasion and wicker is not your bag (literally), we’ve picked three stylish cool bags and boxes that will make light work of carrying heavy goods. We love the Seventies vibe of this long strap style from Business & Pleasure

If you’re looking for a cool coolbox, Sunnylife’s Sounds Cool Box does two jobs in one with its built-in Bluetooth enabled speaker:

If you’re literally going that extra mile, consider a style with wheels – this lemon print picnic cooler bag can easily be wheeled along pathways to the perfect picnic spot. If you’re planning on heading through long grass, the same print is also available in a backpack which contains all of your picnic essentials, stored in a handy front compartment.

Keep it cool

Now, a cool bag or hamper is only good at keeping the sandwiches from curling and your cheese from sweating if you give it the adequate tools. While typical ice blocks will do the job, they’re often bulky and don’t necessarily do the best job at keeping items cool as their awkward shapes won’t fit. Look for smaller sizes that can be easily wedged in or try reusable gel packs instead such as these from Igloo Coolers:

Now, you might recognise these from our Something For The Weekend column a few weeks back but we love Plonk Bottles stylish solution to keeping your wine cool for up to 24 hours. Match them by colour to your wine for a chic drinking situ.

Now that you’ve got the gear, chilled the drinks and even remembered the sun cream (hopefully), it’s a simple matter of food. Check out some of our recipes for the perfect additionas to your picnic spread:

Heirloom tomato and avocado salad

Homemade hummus

Beetroot and feta salad

… And don’t forget the bottle opener!

Feature image: French Connection home

Other images: courtesy of brands

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