AS WEATHER forecasters predict an Indian summer, wellbeing and beauty expert Liz Earle has shared her favourite finishing touches for outdoor entertaining.

"I love garden parties and have had more than usual this year, to make the most of all the balmy summer evenings we've had over the last few months," said Liz.

"This year I've been bringing the sun-soaked colours of the tropics to my summer party table.

"Simple ideas can really transform a plain table top, such as creating beach lanterns using tealights in jam jars filled with sand and shells."

Liz's top tip is to choose a theme and add clever details, whether that be garlands or bunting made from old maps for a globetrotting theme, or hollowed-out pineapples filled with fresh flowers to evoke a tropical mood.

Personalised place settings make every guest feel welcome, suggests Liz. "I like to paint guests' initials on water glasses, using a water-based paint so I can re-use the glasses time and time again."

Meanwhile, simple soft lighting with tealights and candles will set an evening party mood once the sun goes down, and encourage guests to relax and linger.