Months ago, the idea for a picnic photoshoot popped into my mind, and I immediately began looking for the perfect blanket, as I knew this would be the starting point for the rest of the styling. As soon as I saw the blankets in Lindsay Marcella’s gorgeous shop, I knew I had found “the one.” Flash forward a few months (I posted about the blanket back in July here) and a whole lot of planning later, we held the picnic this Sunday at our local Spring Valley park. We invited our good friends, Jenny and Bailey, who, may I say, is the perfect little model. I adore her!
In addition to the blanket from Lindsay, we had unbelievably gorgeous cookies from Miss J’s Sugar Cookies. Jessie is so talented. I seriously did not want the girls to eat the cookies because they were so pretty, but alas, they won – Bailey knew she wanted a pink cookie (and got three!).
Nashville Wraps sent us the beautiful scalloped boxes, which I love so much (I’m a sucker for scalloped edges!). They also sent oodles of gorgeous ribbon, which I want to use on everything in our house. I made four little picnic bites for each box (in their own divided sections), which I’m sharing details about below. Two of my favorite details about the food were the adorable corn holders from Talisman Designs and the fun umbrella party picks (from Emerson Sloan via Meredith).
We also had berry baskets and clear juice bottles from Shop Sweet Lulu, as well as colorful plasticware, which I wrapped a napkin around and secured with a candy bracelet. Meredith of Cake & Confetti made vinyl lettering for the bottles that said “Sweet Like Me,” as well as creating “You’re One in a Melon” for the cooler that she lent us.
Leah at The Monogram Shop gave us a tray and ice bucket, which was perfect for the juice to be chilled in. Last, but certainly not least, were the girls’ outfits. Esther of cuteheads dressed Bailey in the Kennedy Seersucker Dress, and she made a custom design for Isla, which I adore. You can order this ‘Isla dress’ in any color or pattern you like, just send an email here! Bailey chose one of the Willow Crowns pink glitter clips for her pretty blond locks, and Isla wore my favorite navy heart clip.
Tips for Planning the Perfect Picnic with Kids
- Find a good blanket: I recommend looking first at Lindsay Marcella Design, as there are a lot of gorgeous options. You can also find some fluffy blankets at Target or Macy’s.
- Make a list of necessities: Your picnic doesn’t have to be quite as elaborate as the one we had on Sunday, but it can be without having a lot of stress. Write down the items you must have – like bug spray, blanket, food, cooler, etc. and you’ll realize it doesn’t require a lot of work!
- Pick somewhere with a bathroom nearby: If you’ve got potty trained kids at the picnic, make sure you go somewhere where they can go to the restroom if needed. That may be in the woods or a porta-potty, but make sure there’s an option close to where you set up!
- Bring activities: We brought bubbles, balloons, and a ball – all three were played with a lot. Adults can probably sit, eat and drink quite happily, but kids will likely get restless. The games don’t have to be big – you can bring chalk, dice, books, bubbles, etc. which are packed easily.
- Buy a big cooler: Most of the items in our picnic fit inside the cooler or the ice bucket, except for the food boxes, which were easily stacked and carried. A big cooler will be very useful – one that has wheels is a bonus!
- Choose a time 45 minutes before lunch or dinner: I recommend you pick a time that’s at least thirty minutes prior to the kids’ typical meal time, as you never know how long it’ll take to get situated, and you don’t want them to be starving (by that, I mean #hangry).
- Bring music: If you have portable speakers (like this one or this one for only $22!), I recommend bringing it so that you can have relaxing or upbeat music playing to create a fun ambiance.
- Sneak in a Sofia can if you want bubbly: We went alcohol-free at this picnic, but these tiny Sofia cans (found at Target) are perfect for picnics. They’re pretty inconspicuous. “What? This? Oh it’s just a soda can!”
- Bring a trash bag: Something often forgotten, but much needed, is a trash bag. Roll one up and stick it in your purse or the cooler, and use it for all of the left overs. Even if there are trashcans at the park, it’ll make your life easier to use one central bag first.
- Dress appropriately: Wear comfortable clothes, as you may spend your time running around after the kids. Bring jackets for everyone if its cool, even if you have to leave them in a car and send one person to get them later. Good running or walking shoes are a plus!
Easy Picnic Menu
- Veggie wraps: I used Flatout wraps and spread light cream cheese on them, then added sliced sundried tomatoes, pesto, spinach and avocado.
- Watermelon on sticks: It’s amazing how much fun kids will have eating watermelon that looks like a popsicle! Make a hole in the rind with a sharp knife, then stick a popsicle stick 3/4th of the way into the watermelon.
- Pasta salad: I used bow-tie pasta, and added basil, spinach, feta and sundried tomatoes when the noodles had cooled off!
- Carrots: Mini-carrots are an easy thing for people to munch on at picnics!
- Corn on the cob: Almost everyone loves corn on the cob, and so I cut an ear in half, boiled it, then added these colorful holders from Talisman Designs. Aren’t they fun?
- Berries: Blueberries and strawberries are tote around without worrying about a mess (whereas raspberries can be more wet). I put them in these adorable berry baskets.
- Cookies: Sugar cookies are a good sweet treat, as they don’t melt like chocolate, popsicles, or a lot of candy. They don’t have to be quite as fancy as Jessie’s, but they are quite a conversation starter if you can buy some decorated ones!
- Juice: We used Trop 50 juices to cut back on the sugar and filled up the Shop Sweet Lulu bottles. The girls drank them with straws from IKEA, but adults went without!
Alas, the picnic pics! Feast your eyes on these fun photos! Please email me if you have any questions about any of the items!
Thank you to everyone who made my dream become a reality! Love y’all!
- Blanket: Lindsay Marcella; Instagram: @lindsaymarcella
- Dresses: cuteheads; Instagram: @cuteheadskids
- Cookies: Miss J’s Sugar Cookies; Instagram: @missjsugarcookies
- Cooler and vinyl lettering: Cake & Confetti; Instagram: @cakeandconfetti
- Bottles, cookie bags, plasticware and berry boxes: Shop Sweet Lulu: Instagram: @shopsweetlulu
- Hair bow and clip: Willow Crowns; Instagram: @willowcrowns
- White picnic food boxes and ribbon: Nashville Wraps; Instagram: @nashvillewraps
- Tray and ice bucket: The Monogram Shop; Instagram: @themonogramshop
- Corn holders: Talisman Designs: Instagram: @talismandesigns
- Blond child: My friend Jenny‘s daughter, Bailey; Instagram: @afineflourish
- Brunette child: My daughter, Isla