Stylish Outdoor Entertaining – Designs by Ian Prosser
Prosser Design Is About Creating Cozy
According to designer and visionary Ian Prosser, planning a garden party is all about creating cozy, sophisticated seating areas for intimate conversation. “Furniture adds intimacy to an outdoor event; at the end of the night, your closest friends will be lounging here.”
You can call him The Party Whisperer. “When we started off we did a whole lot of flowers and then it morphed to weddings. Ten years ago, I closed the retail stores and morphed into adding the furniture so we could control the event and create a lifestyle-driven event in people’s homes or venues,” says Prosser.
Inspired by Prosser Travel
Inspired by his travels and love of shop windows or found objects, Prosser’s party ideas are in demand and always in vogue. “We bring the feeling of the inside out by going into the home, exploring the host’s personality and vision, then instilling that unique, personal look and feel into the fete. We want to create a warm and nurturing place that lets people play and relax in,” says Prosser.
Prosser’s home is a neutral haven accented by art collections, whimsical artifacts and objects of desire, from a crystal French perfume bottle and opera glasses tucked in a glass box on his coffeetable to white flowers.
His best advice for party givers? “Don’t overthink it. Make people feel comfortable.” Check out Prosser’s 101 fab party ideas.
Prosser Look Book
Whether you rent or use your interior furniture for an outdoor party, the trick is to set up interesting nooks. Have a few sit-down or stand-up tables for dining. Mix up rustic chairs with velvet couches, modern lounges with a pop of pillow color and use linens to complete your color theme against a background of gray, green and white foliage. Throw down a rug, from Oriental to cowhide and layer textures. Illuminate with lanterns hung from trees or nestled in plants and make each tableau unique. Add wine, a great play list, cheese and dozens of friends.
Market lights are popular, but they are over used. Go to a garden center, find something that is more unusual such as tiny lanterns and stars. “We did a dock illuminated with lanterns. It was a fantastic visual and kept people from walking out there,” said Prosser.
Think Ernest Hemingway. Make the furnishings bamboo and bring in a modern vibe with angular white sofa and chairs accented by leafy pillows with a pattern. On the tables, you can use floral palm leaves or the bird of paradise seen here. Work in found objects and things you collect to personalize the décor.
VIVA LA FRANCE
Right now, there’s a trend back to French décor. Have a collection of containers on the table (antique silver gray finish or hand-thrown clay or wire) and Provence Paris-style collectibles. Nothing fussy, simple elegance.
COLOR ME BEAUTIFUL
Although blue and violets are trending, they tend to turn to gray in the evening light. Go for more Lilly Pulitzer vibrant colors or sorbet colors. Cantaloupe, soft raspberry and shocking pink in a combo make it exciting. White flowers are sophisticated and subtle both on the table and in the garden (pansies, violas, geraniums impatients petunias hydrangea, pentes). The mix of textures is intoxicating.
Go bold with each table setting, making interesting individual settings. Go beyond plants or flowers. Use a collection of different sizes of lanterns, accented by blooming plants in clay pots or herbs (mint, rosemary, oregano) on half the tables, flowers on the other half. Prosser likes white and green flowers/foliage on a chartreuse green tablecloth for spring entertaining.
BOTANICA & STYLE HO– USE RENTALS
Since 1989, Botanica International Design & Décor Studio has created beauty that resonates deeper than what the eye perceives. They are all about the beauty of the WOW moment, when the doors first open to guests and the party begins. Owner and impressario Ian Prosser, creative designer Zoë Gallina and their team of designers have a long list of accolades.
They are a full-service event design and decór company providing excellent floral craftsmanship, unique and custom rentals, drapery, furniture, lighting, linen and more.
For them, a home or venue is a stage to be transformed into a magical and memorable occasion where the bar is the moon and beyond.
The event planner is a designer for society events and celebrites including: The Versailles-themed Wine Weekend at MFA, Bern’s Wine Fest, Donna Summer, Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, one of the Back Street Boys.
Ian Prosser | Owner, Event and Floral Designer