With summertime fast approaching, now is the time to start planning a picnic. From parks to hilltops, riversides to beaches, a picnic is a great way to relish the outdoors, savour fresh food and spend valuable time with your friends and family. Preparation is key when planning a summer picnic Ė this can save you plenty of time on the day of the event, and guarantee that you donít forget any essential items. For instance, decide on a picnic basket or box to store your pottery and non-perishable foods within. A simple cooler can then be taken for chilled items including drinks. Classic picnic favourites including deli chicken, seasoned sausages, cheese and fruit can be served in small Ramekin dishes whilst breads and other meats are best shared on Platters. Always take sets of Plates and Bowls, bearing in mind that Bowls are the new Plates! Bowls are ideal for holding a range of different foods, they will also prevent any spillages and are easily stacked and stored. Taking an arrangement of different shapes and colours of tableware looks beautifully eclectic and suits the theming and mood of a summer picnic. For the Plates that are taken, choose Salad Plates as they are an amenable size and can be used for savoury and sweet dishes. Small Side Bowls have been designed to hold sauces, which makes them ideal for dips, oils as well as olives, sun-dried tomatoes and cheese. For dessert, choosing capacious Bowls which suit mousses, creme brulees, cakes and fruit pies. As part of our exclusive James Martin collection, the 5 Piece Cheese Knife Set is the perfect, compact kit to bring along with you for serving and sharing different cheeses. This Set incorporates four cheese knives and the versatile case which doubles as a contemporary cheese board. Finally, take the time to make a refreshing drink of elderflower cordial, cucumber and mint water or raspberry lemonade. If you are concerned about taking glassware with you, serve everyone a drink in a beautiful and durable stoneware Mug, or opt for a set of glass Tumblers if preferred. Our Heritage collections contain an array of sunshine hued Mugs, perfect for a picnic setting.