I'm a huge fan of picnics and of taking advantage of good weather to sit with friends and family, have a natter and watch the world go by.
Like most things in life a tiny amount of preparation can ensure you have a wonderful time and can relax knowing everything has been taken care of. Here are my tips for stress free perfect picnics.
Pack plenty of plates, cups and cutlery. If its for a special occasion take china tea cups. Drinking pimms out of a pink china cup makes you feel like you are back in childhood playing with your dolls and makes something simple become something luxurious (do pack them well though or there will be tears before bedtime)
Pack a rug but also take some scatter cushions and if you have room a parasol and stand. This will ensure you can lounge around like something out of Manet's Le Dejeuner sur l'herbe (nakedness optional)
If your picnic is going to go through to early evening take some storm lanterns along or even just some jam jars with tea lights in. Your sunny hideaway will turn into a magical fairy garden in an instant.
Take a cool box for your wine and soft drinks, plenty of wet wipes, bug spray and suntan lotion and some entertainment, games, the papers, a sketch book, bin bags and a large floppy hat. Now you are ready for the perfect picnic.