We've got the scoop on how to make your next outdoor gathering a success with these tips from Sebastien Fauteux, Creative Director of Urban Barn.

We had a chance to talk with Urban Barn Creative Director Sebastien Fauteux at the Vancouver Home and Design Show preview party, and were happy to find that he is just as cheerful and pleasant as his designs. He told us his inspiration comes from West Coast attitude, international travel and cutting edge women’s fashion—he got some funny looks when asking for the biggest possible size of the nude-coloured women’s blouse that inspired the Tessa pleated pillow (“I just wanted the fabric!” laughs Sebastien)—and with Urban Barn’s great Summer 2014 line recently launched (get ready for graphic throw pillows bedecked with farm animals, boldly coloured throws and stools shaped like tiki skulls) Sebastien has been thinking a lot about summer entertaining and how to bring the outdoors in. He gave us the scoop on his own backyard entertaining essentials. Sebastien Fauteux’s Backyard Entertaining TipsBlend indoor space with outdoor space – It’s important that there is an easy flow from inside to outside. Your patio should feel like an extension of your living room, and vice versa. You can achieve this by simply integrating a unified colour scheme—a few throw pillows in the same shade can go a long way.Plan games that everyone can enjoy – Games encouraging mingling and bonding among guests who don’t know each other well and otherwise might not interact all night. Sebastien’s favourites for summer are the classics: croquet and bocce.Have a variety of beverages on hand – Make sure you have non-alcoholic options, like cucumber water.Light up the night – Candlelight is a great way to set the mood for your backyard gathering. Outsmart pesky breezes by placing your candles in hurricane lanterns or mason jars.Reduce hosting stress by making it a potluck – Make things easier on yourself by having guests bring food. (Just make sure everyone coordinates so you don’t end up with 10 potato salads.)Always have a vegetarian/gluten-free option – …even if you don’t expect to need it! People’s diets change, and you never know when a guest might surprise you with a newly developed gluten sensitivity or other dietary restriction. Keep bugs at bay – Running a fan in the food area keeps bugs off your dinner and introduces a pleasant breeze to a hot summer evening. WL