When I’m packing up my beach bag, I cover the basics first; sunglasses, a good supply of SPF, and plenty of water are must-haves for the sand and surf. But when it comes to picnics, the beach can be a bit of a bully. Away from the comfort of a well-furnished kitchen, outdoor eating is only fun until a toddler on a rampage kicks sand into your sandwich, or a gust of wind sends your umbrella out to sea.
Whether it’s a casual luncheon by the lake or an all-day oceanside fête, coming prepared makes all the difference. The right supplies combine function and style, and together can take your beach picnic from hot sandy mess to a spread worth sharing. (And worth ‘gramming!) From the perfect picnic blanket to a must-have self-anchoring umbrella, I’ve picked a few favorites to do just that.