Zero-waste summer entertaining

Calling all hosts! As summer approaches here's how to entertain your guests without waste.

Summer is here, and it’s the perfect season for sun-soaked picnics, sizzling barbecues, and outdoor get-togethers with friends and family. But who says you can't have a blast without the trash? By embracing zero waste principles, you can host an unforgettable summer party that’s kind to the planet and fun for everyone. Ready to make your next gathering both eco-friendly and entertaining? Here’s how to throw a zero waste bash that leaves no footprint behind.

Planning your zero-waste event

Location: Choose wisely

Select a venue that aligns with your zero-waste goals. Public parks, gardens, or your own backyard are excellent choices. These settings provide natural beauty, reducing the need for additional decorations. Ensure there are adequate recycling and composting facilities on-site, or plan to bring your own.

Sustainable decorations

Natural and reusable decor

Use nature as your decor. Fresh flowers, potted plants, and greenery from your garden can add beauty to your event without generating waste. For a festive touch, consider using reusable decorations like fabric bunting, string lights, or lanterns. Thrift stores are great places to find unique, reusable items.

DIY projects

Get creative with DIY decorations. Upcycle jars into candle holders, create table runners from old fabric, or make banners from recycled paper. These personal touches not only reduce waste but also add a unique charm to your gathering.

Check out Pinterest for inspo!

Zero-waste dining

Ditch disposables

Say goodbye to single-use plates, cups, and cutlery. Use your regular dishware, or if you’re hosting a large crowd, consider renting from a local party supply store. If reusable options aren’t feasible, choose compostable products made from bamboo, palm leaves, or other sustainable materials.

Mindful menu planning

Plan a menu that minimises waste. Buy in bulk to reduce packaging, and opt for seasonal, locally-sourced ingredients. Encourage guests to bring their own containers for leftovers. Serve finger foods or items that don’t require utensils to further cut down on waste.

Check out our guide on how to stop food waste for further tips on creating a zero-waste party!

Beverage stations

Instead of bottled drinks, set up a beverage station with pitchers of water, homemade lemonade, iced tea, or a signature cocktail. Provide reusable or compostable cups, and label them so guests can keep track of their drink.

Entertaining activities

Eco-friendly games

Choose games and activities that don’t generate waste. Lawn games like cornhole, badminton, or bocce ball are perfect for outdoor gatherings. For kids, consider nature scavenger hunts or crafting with natural materials. Keep it fun and use games you already have!

Visit Green Matters for more ideas to make your party fun.  


Hosting a zero-waste summer gathering is not only possible but also rewarding. By making mindful choices about invitations, decorations, dining, and activities, you can significantly reduce the environmental impact of your event. Plus, you’ll inspire your friends and family to think more sustainably in their own lives.  

Tandem Marketplace provides access to tools, advice and a range of greener home improvement products through our marketplace partners. All helping you to cut down your bills and your carbon footprint.


We deliver monthly money-saving tips and energy hacks straight to your inbox.

By joining our list, you agree to our Privacy Notice.

You're in

More green goodness coming your way.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.