Happy Bastille Day: How To Throw a French-Inspired Summer Soirée

In honor of Bastille Day, landscape artist Lily Kwong shares her tips and tricks for an "avant garden" bash.

french inspired party tips
Maison St. Germain

When it comes to throwing a party, a theme can help add a playful element to the evening, and give your guests a touch of the unexpected they will never forget. With Bastille Day here and summer nights going strong, an “avant garden” soirée feels nothing short of chic, and is the perfect way to add a little je ne sais quoi to your typical get-together.

Here, we tapped landscape artist Lily Kwong, whose design company connects people to nature through innovative landscape design. Her recent art installation on the High Line featured a collaboration with , and showcased thousands of florals that transformed the NYC hotspot into a botanical fantasy. From whimsical cocktails to romantic decor, peruse Lily’s tips below and throw your own French-inspired bash.

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1 The French Way
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"St-Germain’s global ambassador Camille Ralph Vidal penned the perfect book for the summer bon-vivant, How to Drink French Fluently. You can find inspiration for delicious summer cocktails & drink like a French girl from sunrise to sunset."

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2 À Votre Santé
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How to Drink French Fluently: A Guide to Joie de Vivre with St-Germain Cocktails, $13, amazon.com.

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3 Picnic Scene
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"Why not turn your dinner party into a beautiful mise-en-scene? Think chic blankets, velvet pillows and lots of florals for a picnic style affair that won't disappoint."

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4 Poppy Prints
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Kate Spade picnic blanket, $45, bloomingdales.com.


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5 Dress the Part
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"Printed wedges and earrings earrings with pastel accents will help you host in style."

Piece & Co. wedge sandals, $168, bananarepublic.gap.com.

Lizzie Fortunato earrings, $210, shopBAZAAR.com.


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6 Floral Play
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"People are used to bouquets as table centerpieces, but a floral runner or hanging blooms add a visual interest and magic to a table setting or party decor."

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7 Serve It Chicly
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"No garden soiree is complete without a simple and refreshing cocktail in hand. Personally, I love the signature St-Germain cocktail, made with St-Germain elderflower liqueur, Champagne, and sparkling water over ice with a lemon twist. They also have a beautiful carafe that can serve up to six people at a time, and can double as a floral vase."

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8 Pour It Up
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St. Germain carafe, $12, shop.stgermain.fr.


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9 Musical Notes
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"Mia Moretti DJ’d expertly our summer soiree on the High Line. Help set the vibe at your own party with one of her Spotify playlists ."

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10 Dinner With a Purpose
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"Make your dinner all the more special by giving it a purpose. I love building a community with old friends and new acquaintances over a home-cooked meal. Organize a volunteer contingent for the , or host an event that raises money for or ."

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