Written by Anna Post

I once attended an outdoor lakeside wedding on the most beautiful summer day. Perfect—except that I’m very pale and had forgotten sunscreen (a must for me), and there was no shade to be had anywhere. What I wouldn’t have given for a bottle of SPF 15! The mistake was mine, but it brings up an important point: Namely, that seeing to guests’ comfort goes beyond keeping their drinks full. Think about any needs your guests might not have anticipated, or little extras they might be grateful for. At a summer wedding party, bottles of water, sunscreen, paper fans (you can even dress them up with quotations or pictures of the couple), or inexpensive Chinese parasols all make welcome additions. (If the party’s at the beach, consider providing basic flip-flops to keep barefoot guests from scorching their fee.) For winter parties, have a clean path cleared to the door and hot cocoa or cider waiting to warm up guests coming in from the cold. A little thoughtfulness will leave a lasting impression!