Back That Grass Up

Lay out a prettier (and smarter) picnic, with help from Instagram

This June, join us as we defy the confines of the kitchen and look outside. If you need us, we'll be exploring the Great Outdoors.

Mason jars are so 2012. But picnic-glamping mash-ups and sparklers galore? Just send the Google Maps coordinates and we'll be there.

Speaking of technology, we scrolled—ahem, consulted—our Instagram feeds to pull the best ideas for throwing a picture-perfect picnic as we prepare for Fourth of July festivities ahead. Here's what we liked, literally:

? Mark your territory, in style.

Is it a birthday party or a clever way to claim that coveted grass? It can be both with this whimsical idea that reminds us a bit of Up.

? Step away from the stove.

Save your big projects for feasting indoors, and keep things simple and store-bought for your outdoor excursion. You can never go wrong with peak fruits, a bready boule and rosé.

? Put the living back in "living room."

This may be a bit precious, but think of all the possibilities (baby and bridal showers!) by simply tossing your gnarliest, er, most vintage rug on the ground with fat, fluffy pillows and a rustic table.

? Reduce, reuse, recycle.

Instead of tossing that hard rind, keep your watermelon halves for housing your favorite picnic snacks.

? Pitch, please.

The worst thing about picnics? Feeling like your skin is on fire from those blazing sun rays. Avoid the burn by hanging a fort à la your fourth-grade sleepovers (and spread on the sunblock just for good measure).

? No shame in the indoor game.

Or avoid the sun, bugs and whatever else Mother Nature lavishes on her inhabitants altogether by bringing your picnic indoors. AC, FTW.

? End your meal with a bang.

It's not a Fourth of July feast—or really a summer shindig—without lighting up the sky with these fun little sparklers.