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An Easy Affordable Outdoor Summer Brunch

It’s certainly no surprise that I’m headed towards simple gatherings these days, so I asked Amanda and Andrea to pull together a pretty budget friendly brunch that is EASY to execute. While I can spend hours shopping and styling a shoot for the blog, I know that for most people (or me in my real life) this is unrealistic. So here it goes:

1. Start with a simple theme, say just even a color.

For this summer brunch, we went with an all white look. It’s easy to to put together and you most likely have white plates and napkins already in your cupboard. We started with the simple Dining Table & Chairs but you can use what you have. Then to dress it up a bit, buy some baby’s breath (super affordable and accessible) and lay it down the center of the table. These beige & white linen napkins also make the look super summery. We also included a few accessories as accents in white like the vases and tumblers to keep the white theme consistent.


2. Serve food that requires no cooking.

I’m super good at not-cooking so thankfully Amanda and Andrea made it easy for all of us. Make a simple parfait by layering some yogurt, granola, and fruit. Serve it in a fancy bowl like this one and your friends will have no idea you spent all of five minutes putting it together. Toast with a variety of jams and avocado mash (in this perfect serving dish) is a great option as well.

brunchfood1 brunchfood2 brunchfood3

3. Cheat with pre-bought goodies.

Pick up an assortment of fancy looking breakfast pastries and let your local bakery do the work for you. No one can resist a platter of french baked goods. Place them on cake stands and you’ll look like you know what you’re doing. Deviled eggs are another easy option you can just pick up at the grocery store and serve on a cute platter.


4. Offer a variety of drink options.

One must wash down deviled eggs with something even fancier. With the help of cocktail expert Ashley Conway, Amanda and Andrea put together three unique options for you that are super easy to make and perfect for wowing your friends and tossing into your cocktail hole mouth.


Iced Lavender Latte


6 oz cold brewed or cold coffee

3 oz milk or non-dairy alternative

3/4 oz lavender simple syrup (recipe below)

lavender stalk garnish (optional)


Mix first 3 ingredients in a cup. Top with ice. Garnish with lavender.

Lavender Simple Syrup


1 cup sugar

1 cup water

4 tsp dried lavender buds (can be found online or spice shop)


Bring all to a simmer in a pot over high heat. Take off heat and let cool. Strain and store in a jar for a few weeks.


Rose Cucumber Gin Fizz


2 oz gin

2 inch cucumber, sliced

1/2 oz lime juice

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1/4 teaspoon rose water

2 oz soda water

rose bud and cucumber, garnish


Muddle cucumber and lime in a cocktail shaker. Add sugar, gin, and rose water. Add ice and shake. Strain into a glass with ice. Top with soda water and stir, garnish with rose bud and cucumber ribbon or slices. (SO PRETTY).


Ginger Lemonade with Edible Flower Ice Cubes


6 oz lemonade (can be homemade or bought)

2 oz ginger beer

mint sprig, garnish

edible flower ice cube, garnish


Make flower ice cubes by taking organic, edible flowers and adding them to ice cube trays. Fill with water and freeze. In a glass, mix lemonade and ginger beer. Add flower ice cubes. Top with mint sprig.

5. Impress your guests with fancy garnishes.

Ready for this incredibly sneaky trick? Garnishing your drinks makes you look like a pro and it’s super easy. We love these edible flowers you can buy at whole foods, so we used them just about everywhere. You can drop them in an ice tray with some water for some really unique ice cubes, or just use them as garnish if iced flowers aren’t your jam.


I’d brunch pretty hard at that table. Thanks so much ladies, for producing this shoot and recipes. Now if you want to get that look – here you go:

Summer Brunch Get The Look Emily Henderson Design Outdoor Dining Hosting

1. Dining Table | 2. Dining Chairs | 3. Opalescent Glasses | 4. Vase | 5. Silverware | 6. Porcelain Milk Carton Creamer | 7. Copper French Press | 8. Striped Linen Napkins | 9. White Linen Napkins | 10. Polka Dot Paper Straws | 11. Parfait Bowls | 12. Cake Stand | 13. White Plates | 14. Mason Jar Mugs | 15. Egg Tray | 16. Condiment Bowl

Thanks so much to Andrea and Amanda for pulling this together! Check out some of their other posts: Hosting an Easy Summer Dinner Party, 3 Delicious Lazy Girl Appetizers.

Creative Direction & Photography by: Andrea Posadas,  Styling & Story by: Amanda Holstein, Cocktail recipes by: Ashley Conway

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7 years ago

So pretty!! I love these posts just as much as your awesome make-over posts! I love recipes and ideas I can implement in my own life. Thank you very much!!

7 years ago

Some of these drinks look so good!! Can’t wait to try

7 years ago

TGIF and thanks for such simple and pretty ideas for me to try

7 years ago

Love the simplicity. I’ve got a vintage egg plate just like that in my shop! How cool that Target is so vintage inspired lately.

7 years ago

Don’t try that baby’s breath trick on a breezy day; it will fly everywhere quickly. If there’s any wind, keep the baby’s breath in containers.

7 years ago

Looks lovely! I’m a bit sad that autumn is coming, no longer summer brunches. By the way are you going to blog about your bedroom make over? I’ve been waiting all week to see it!
Ps. I just love your blog Emily 🙂

Susie Q.
7 years ago

As a southerner, I would never deign to serve store-bought deviled eggs. Gasp! My homemade deviled eggs are my pride and joy. Otherwise, it looks delish! I’m gonna be all over that gin fizz!

What a fresh take on a brunch. Yes! Finally someone said not to serve things you actually have to cook and it is okay to buy pastries for a brunch. I love the simple ease where the focus is on hanging out with the people there. Everything was perfect, except I would go so simple and just do Mimosas. I guess if everything else was easy you could make drinks that are a little more fussy. I’m going to be trying this on my new paver patio when the weather cools off.

7 years ago

So perfect, simple, elegant and beautiful. Way to go!!

7 years ago

nice post thank you

I enjoyed over read your blog post. Your blog have nice information, I got good ideas from this amazing blog. I am always searching like this type blog post. I hope I will see again..

7 years ago

It is interesting to me . Please share more info here in this site. I like to make a progress. Thanks for share ..

Margrethe Berg
7 years ago

Those are the most amazingly beautiful vases ever! I cried when I found out they don’t ship to Norway…
Fun fact: in Norway we call these white flowers brides veil.

7 years ago

Love the look, and love that you guys included the recipes!

7 years ago

Loving this post, nothing is better then an easy brunch!

Emily P
7 years ago

First, I have that egg platter from Target and it is soo cute in person since it totally looks like an egg! Second, I went to a wedding in Newport, RI last week and overheard a girl at the bar order a spiked seltzer and my ears perked up. I love seltzer (because I am not fancy but bubbles in water make me feel fancy) and these seltzer drinks are so amazing! They are 6%ish alcohol and taste and smell like seltzer but then all of the sudden, you have a buzz! I tried 2 brands and my favorite flavor is grapefruit in both brands – Spiked Seltzer and Truly Spiked. Pomegranate is not yummy, just an fyi. I am waiting for the hot humid Florida weather to cool down so I can host a little Saturday pool brunch at my house and the seltzers will definitely make an appearance!

7 years ago

I really like this kind of post! I was kind of surprised to see not that many comments, so figured I’d comment 🙂 Anyways, thanks for the pretty pictures and ideas!

7 years ago

Your blog is really interesting and inspiration to many. I’ll be looking forward for more of your posts. Keep it up! I will follow you ..

7 years ago

usefull and good