dress: Reitmans c/o Coquitlam Centre
shoes: Army & Navy shoe sale
belt: Maison Scotch
necklace: LowLuv
cardi: c/o Jackson Rowe (find this cardi again in an upcoming post)

It’s officially summer and that means backyard BBQ’s !  I love a good night in or over at friends where everyone can relax, eat, drink, and catch up all while soaking in the glorious weather.  Canada Day is coming up and many of us take to entertaining.  Here are my 5 tips for making your next BBQ that much better.

1) Fun & Games

Young or old, everyone likes to play outside.  Set up a couple of fun and easy games for your guests to play.  I’m a fan of LadderBall and the Bean Bag Toss games.  Limited by space?  Grab a few board games or even a deck of cards.  Any activity outside is fun in the summer!

2) Comfort

Make sure you have lots of seating for your guests.  There is nothing worse then trying to eat your dinner while standing.  Don’t have enough chairs?  Throw down some beach blankets and throw pillows for extra places to hang.  This is especially great for kids.  People are always moving around so turns will be had in all the different seating areas.  I also love having some blankets or wraps on hand for those late night gab sessions over a bottle of wine.  It’s like camping in the backyard…kinda.

3) Lighting

If your soiree is running into dusk, make sure you have pretty lighting in your outdoor space so you can keep the party going.  A giant bright porch light doesn’t  exactly set a chill mood.  Our patio umbrella has LED lights on it and I’m obviously obsessed with my new Edison Bulb Garden String Lights.  A few candles always do the trick too!

4) Food

Ok, obviously you need food at a BBQ, but don’t stress to impress.  Keep things simple.  There is a reason hotdogs and burgers are summer classics.  I love anything in bar form.  Why not do a hotdog bar?  You can have an assortment of hotdogs and smokies (lots of veggie options here too), different types of buns, and elevated condiments.  Found some cute inspo here.

5) Style

If you’re hostessing you are going to want to be cute but comfy.  Coquitlam Centre and I have paired up to show you how you can get #FreshlyDressed for your next backyard bash.  This super cute pineapple print dress is comfortable, machine washable, and super breezy.  I always wear little bike shorts under my dresses and skirts.  This way I can chase Maddie around, bend, and be confident if the wind picks up.

Thank you Coquitlam Centre for this casual party perfect dress!  Be sure to follow the hashtag #FreshlyDressed for more ideas of how to elevate your summer style.


1 dress 4 looks

During my years of working in retail, I would often hear women say “I love that dress, but I have nowhere to where it.”   This statement always confused me.  Dresses can be one of the most versatile {and comfortable} items in your wardrobe.  I rarely buy a dress with one purpose only in mind.  When I buy a dress, I think of all the different ways it could be worn.  I think of my shoes, layering pieces, handbags, scarves, and any other accessories I could pair with it.

This pretty little ombre dress is one I’m totally drawn to.  It’s a beautiful hue, a flattering cut for me, and I could do so much with it.  I’ve styled 4 possibilities above, but really the options are endless.  I could layer a black blazer and throw on some black pumps for a more classic approach.  For traveling I can see myself wearing a long cardigan and pashmina with a smart travel tote.  See?  Endless.

So, the next time you find yourself dress shopping, be sure to come up with at least 3-4 ways you’ll wear the dress.

Happy shopping!

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