16 Easy Summer Party Ideas

Gather inspiration for a casual outdoor gathering from one of our easy summer party ideas. From dinner on the deck to a festive taco buffet, your options are endless for a no-fuss summer party.

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11 Fun Ideas for Decorating a Cake with Candy

Make a birthday cake or other special day cake oh-so-adorable with candies! Cookbook author and stylist Libbie Summers shares 11 super-simple ways that cinnamon candies, jellybeans, maltballs, and other sweet favorites can make you look like a professional cake decorator in minutes.

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Coconut Cream Island Punch, The Cutest 5-Ingredient Cocktail Ever!

Make our DIY party cocktail -- that includes just a few tasty ingredients -- for an adults-only drink everyone can agree on. Cut-up star fruit provides a gorgeous base inside your drink pitcher.

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Sugar-Coated Ice Cream Social

I scream, you scream … You know the drill. Host a sugar-coated ice cream social the kiddos will love -- with cereal necklaces, paper crowns, candy truffles, and a whimsical ice cream truck. Go on and get celebrating!

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Pitcher Cocktail Recipes

Where there's a pitcher, there's a party. Whether you're brunching, dinner partying, or hosting a (very) happy hour, these fun pitcher cocktail recipes are sure to hit the spot. Find icy margaritas, fruity sangria cocktails, spiked punch, and more!

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Editors' Picks: Wedding Invitations

From modern to traditional, we've searched through thousands of wedding invitations to bring you our top picks.


    Everything in this slideshow

    • Paper Perfect

      This beautiful invitation from Margot Madison Creative Stationery uses a sophisticated palette of paper stocks including hand silk-screened paper from Japan layered in an asymmetrical design. Reply postcard and directions insert are attached with a silk ribbon bow, giving it a handmade touch you will love.

      Margot Madison Creative Stationery; Hiba and Gary; www.margotmadisonstationery.com; $10 per invitation (minimum of 50).

    • Blue and Brown Mod Floral

      We chose this invite because of the beautiful vintage floral print for a modern yet traditional vibe.

      Hello Lucky; Vintage Bloom; www.hellolucky.com; 100 for $1,780 (2-color, includes RSVP).

    • Creative Striped Tin

      Send your invitation in style with a personalized striped tin. This out-of-the-ordinary invite is sure to impress your guests.

      CreativeBlu; Striped Green Tin; www.creativeblu.net; 100 for $3,000 (invitation tin, RSVP set, insert card, address and mail).

    • Perfect in a Pocket

      We love the beautiful design of the Cocoa Florets by Hammerpress. The subtle blue design on the outer folder gives a rich feel to this invitation. It also sports a modern touch with the bold wedding date used to keep the pocket folder closed.

      Hammerpress; Cocoa Florets; www.hammerpress.net; 100 for $1,600 (invitation, RSVP, trifold jacket, band, and outer envelope).

    • Be Bold with Flowers

      Make a statement with this custom letterpress invitation from Paper Source. Check out their Web site to customize and preview your own invitation.

      Paper Source; Cottage Blooms; www.paper-source.com; Invitation: A7 card; 100 for $595, 200 for $705. Save the date and response card: 4-Bar card; 100 for $280, 200 for $355 (price includes unprinted envelopes).

    • An Organized Invite

      Keep your response cards, directions, and invitations in order with this pocket fold invite from CreativeBlu.

      CreativeBlu; Red Floral Pocket Invite; www.creativeblu.net; 100 for $2,400 invitations (invitation pocket fold, RSVP set, 2 insert cards, address and mail).

    • Go Traditional

      The beautiful design of the Gramercy invitation from Bella Figure fully captures the classic letterpress look.

      Bella Figura; Gramercy; www.bellafigura.com; 100 for $1,540 (invitation and reply card).

    • A Burst of Sunshine

      The bright colors of this invitation are perfect for a summer or spring wedding -- or if you love the color orange like we do!

      A Day in May Design; Signature Line, Sunshine; www.adayinmay.com; 75 for $1,040.

    • Simply Unique

      We love the accordion style of the Cherry Blossom invitation by Grapevine Weddings. This invitation is complete with a handy pocket to hold the RSVP and direction cards.

      Grapevine Weddings; Cherry Blossom; www.grapevinepaperie.com; 100 for $7,300.

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      Beautiful Calligraphy

      If you love calligraphy, this invitation is perfect for you. The Folio invitation is hand-lettered by expert calligrapher Maria Thomas, making your invitations a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

      Checkerboard Ltd.; Folios of M. Thomas; www.checkernet.com/folios; 100 for $775.

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      A Natural Touch

      The sprawling vines on this letterpress invitation from Hammerpress create a stunning contrast on the bold green background.

      Hammerpress; Shadow Vine; www.hammerpress.net; 100 for $1,600.

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      Ribbon Makes It Classic

      The two-tone knot featured on the Palatial invitation from Checkerboard gives off an elegant feel.

      Checkerboard; Palatial; www.checkernet.com; 100 for $539.

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      Modern but Simple

      Inspired by a vintage dress from Honolulu, Sakura's bloom celebrates new beginnings. You can also personalize this design in a variety of color choices.

      Egg Press; Sakura; www.eggpress.com; 100 for $918 (invitations with printed envelopes).

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      A Vintage Touch

      The delicate design of the Vintage Lace invitation by Peculiar Pair Press is simply elegant.

      Peculiar Pair Press; Vintage Lace; www.peculiarpairpress.com; 250 for $1,348.

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      Bring on the Beach

      Wow your guests with this personalized invitation from My Personal Artist, perfect for a destination wedding. Choose from a variety of original watercolor artwork by artist Michelle Mospens. You can add shells and other embellishments to personalize your message in a bottle.

      My Personal Artist; Tropical Message; see www.mypersonalartist.com for current pricing.

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      Simply Stated

      We love the details of this simple invitation -- a solid blue background paired with small green dots and a beautiful script monogram. Mix and match colors to fit your scheme.

      Modern Press; The Mix Collection; www.modern-letterpress.com; 100 for $2,640.

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      A Burst of Fun

      This whimsical design of the Spiral Wedding Invitation from Rock Scissors Paper is a great match for a casual summer wedding.

      Rock Scissor Paper; Spiral Wedding Invitation; rockscissorpaper.stores.yahoo.net; 250 for $1,147 (includes invitations, main envelope with printed return address, RSVP card, and RSVP envelope).

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      A Beautiful Save-the-Date

      We couldn't resist putting a few save the dates in the mix -- especially this handmade announcement by Felix Doolittle, featuring an illustrated chapel, perfect to announce your big day.

      Felix Doolittle; Save the date card featuring wedding chapel illustration; www.felixdoolittle.com; $2.50 each with a minimum of 25 cards.

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      Simple Swirls

      This elegant invitation from Elizabeth and Homer is adorned with a beautiful swirl design.

      Elizabeth and Homer; AnNicole; www.elizabethandhomer.com; starting at 100 for $980.

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      Modern Style

      For a modern look, check out the Metro invitation from Papermints. Featuring san serif fonts and a modern monogram, this is the invitation for the contemporary bride.

      Papermints; Metro from the Contempo Collection; www.papermints.com; 150 for $950.

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      A Classic Vibe

      This custom letterpress invitation from Paper Source features a vintage-inspired one-color design. Customize this invitation to fit your wedding scheme with a choice of color and fonts.

      Paper Source; Colonial Stencil; www.paper-source.com; A7 card; 100 for $415 for 100, $525 for 200. Save the date and response card: 4-bar card 100 for $200, 200 for $275 (includes unprinted envelopes).

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      Send Out the Tickets

      This plane-ticket-inspired save-the-date is a cute way to let guests know about your upcoming wedding.

      Grapevine; Boarding Pass; www.grapevinepaperie.com; 100 for $2,200.

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      Design Your Own Invite

      Do you want to design your own invitation but don't know where to start? Check out Mountaincow's unique products including easy-to-use software, printer-compatible stationery, and fashionable designs to help you print your own invitations at home. You can also use the programs to create your own save-the-dates, programs, and menu cards.

      Mountaincow Invitations and Software; Ginkgo Silhouette; www.mountaincow.com; PrintingPress Platinum, $59.99; Fonts & Graphics for Weddings, $29.99.

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      The Layered Effect

      Kiwi Smoothie from Invitation Consultants sports layered papers, layered ribbons, and a modern monogram for a stylish and elegant look.

      Invitation Consultants; Kiwi Smoothie; www.invitationconsultants.com; 100 for $436.50.

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      An Out-of-the-Ordinary Invitation

      This beautiful letterpress invitation from Modern Press features a unique laser-cut branch, allowing the solid background to shine through. This beautiful package includes the boxed invitation and reply card with envelope, as well as layered handmade paper wrap enclosure and laser-cut box sleeve.

      Modern Press; Papel Collection Laser-Cut Branch; www.modern-letterpress.com; 100 for $3,550.

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      Creative Invitation Kits

      For another do-it-yourself alternative, check out the wedding invitation kits from Paper Source. They provide you with all the pieces to assemble your invitations. Simply lay out and print your invites on the provided paper and then layer the rest of the pieces. You can put your personal touch on every invitation.

      Paper Source; Bollywood Petal; www.paper-source.com; 50 for $125.

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      Feature Summers Flowers

      Layers of real pressed flowers grace the Summer Invitations from Soolip Custom Letterpress. This unique invitation is perfect for an outdoor-theme spring wedding.

      Soolip Custom Letterpress; Summer; www.soolip.com. Retail for approximately $5,000 for 100 sets. Prices may vary per customer (includes invitation, outer envelope, reply card, reply envelope, and reception card).

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      A Layered Set

      Crafted from recycled papers, this invitation by Tasha Rae Designs is eco-friendly and trendy.

      Tasha Rae Designs; 3-Layer Set; www.tasharaedesigns.com.

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      Asian Inspired

      The laser cut design from Paper Orchid gives off an elegant Asian feel.

      Paper Orchid; Asian Fan; www.paperorchidstationery.com; 50 for $80.

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      Beach Elegance

      The Seashell Invitation from A Day in May Design is an elegant invitation perfect for a beach wedding. Customize this invite to your wedding color scheme and add extra embellishments such as the folder or belly wrap.

      A Day in May Design; Signature Line, Seashell; www.adayinmay.com; 75 for $1,040.

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      Next Slideshow 15+ Pinterest Wedding Ideas to Try

      15+ Pinterest Wedding Ideas to Try

      Get ready for the happiest day of your life with our collection of Pinterest-worthy wedding ideas. Including wedding centerpieces, favors, flowers, and more, these DIY ideas are perfect for your dream day.
      Begin Slideshow »



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