Create Your Own Backyard Movie Night!

One of my all-time favorite summer night activities is going to a drive-in movie. Somehow, there’s an extra element of fun in watching a classic or new movie outside. I wanted to create a similar feeling in our backyard and thought it’d be fun to share with you how it turned out so you can create your own backyard movie night!

The biggest thing I think to keep in mind is that it doesn’t have to be complicated and you don’t have to buy a lot. I shopped my house for basically everything here. I pulled mattresses off bunk beds, grabbed pillows and blankets from pretty much every room, and all the extra bedsheets. You could use sleeping bags or even just blankets and lawn chairs too! You will also need a projector of some sort. I used the one I have for cookie decorating but this one has a lot of great reviews. There are tutorials online to make your own version, too.

To create the “tent,” I put together two dowel rods with dowel screws and used my favorite power tool—the push pin (ha!). The push pin held the sheet draped in place. 🙂 I love using push pins because the holes are minimal, it feels less permanent, and it doesn’t damage the sheets. I used push pins again on the sheet that I pinned to the deck to make a screen. You could also string a rope or put it on a fence, as you just want it stretched as tight as possible for a flat screen.

What’s a movie night without all the popcorn and candy, am I right? To make the board, I grabbed a few of our family favorite snacks and played around with how it would sit on the boards. And here’s a link to our popcorn bowls.

We’re going to watch the new Space Jam, but started with the original, because I don’t think you can watch a new version of a movie without watching the classic first! It’s the same with books that get turned into films; I always have to read the original before watching it! Any other ’90s Space Jam fans out there?I hope you are enjoying these last few weeks of summer and that you create your own backyard movie night!  xo, Claire

P.S My romper is the same one Laura has in a different color! Once she shared how comfy it was, it was an ‘add to cart’ situation for sure!

Sources: Floor pillow, throw blanket, popcorn bowls, romper, projector.

Love movie night? Check out Elsie’s movie room tour + home theater ideas.

Credits // Author: Claire Shaffer. Photography: Anne Rinearson.
  • Hi, this looks so fun!

    I’m curious about how you use your projector for cookie decorating!

  • My husband and I just watched the 90s Space Jam the other night – it holds up! I also just purchased those popcorn bowls, they are so cute.

    • I agree, it’s still so good!! And I’m loving the popcorn bowls too!

  • How do y’all deal with flies and mosquitoes? We are invited to a backyard movie this evening and I know I will get chewed alive. Will need to wear pants AND bug spray just to survive, and I’ll still be distracted and covered in welts tomorrow. Just me? Just Minnesota in the summer?

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