How to Create An Aesthetic Picnic for Instagram (+ Photo Inspo!)

Looking for that Instagram-worthy picnic aesthetic? You’re in the right place!

As an Instagram content creator and blogger, I am always looking to create beautiful photos.

And sometimes, the prettiest way you can create sponsored content for food or drink brands is to weave their products into a picnic.

When spring and fall roll around, Texas becomes beautifully sunny and warm. It makes for the perfect occasion for a picnic! You have bright sunshine, blue skies, and the great outdoors. What more can you ask for as a backdrop?

Picnics always make for gorgeous and fun photos. That’s why I’ve put together a few tips on how to get that Instagram-perfect picnic aesthetic!

Here I’ll cover a few things:

  • How to find the ideal aesthetic picnic setting
  • What foods to bring on a picnic
  • Props and other things to bring on a picnic
  • Aesthetic Instagram picnic inspiration
  • Picnic Instagram reel/TikTok inspiration
  • Picnic Instagram caption ideas

If you want to jump straight to the picnic photoshoot inspiration section, click here!

Let’s get to it!

How to Find the Ideal Aesthetic Picnic Setting

First things first, you’ll need to choose a pretty setting for your picture-perfect picnic.

You can decide early on if you like to set up on the ground (like I did) or on top of a picnic table.

Typically, for that cottage-core, romantic Instagram picnic aesthetic, you’ll set up on the ground.

You’ll need level ground somewhere beautiful in nature. (If you’re having a picnic next to a bunch of cars, then that picture is going to be a whole lot less dreamy than a setting in nature!)

Basically, I like having open skies in my photos because I love seeing shades of blue on both my blog and Instagram feeds.

I decided on this field at White Rock Lake in Dallas for a few reasons:

  • It features an open sky that showcases the beautiful sunny day
  • It is near water (water is always gorgeous in photos!)
  • The background is relatively simple- which draws more attention to the picnic itself
  • It is a scenic park in general

With gorgeous open fields near Winfrey Point, White Rock Lake is at the heart of East Dallas and also offers gorgeous lake views.

This setting was also ideal because of its proximity to our home – you don’t want to drive too far or your food can get cold (or warm, depending on what you bring)!

What Foods to Bring on a Picnic

I set up this picnic advertising on top of these soft blankets on green grass for this Argentinian wine company, can you tell? 😉

You’ll want to pack food items that are easy to transport and aren’t too messy.

Things to Think About

  • Color (more on that later)
  • Messiness (obviously the less messy the better)
  • How realistic it is (it is a picnic after all! You should enjoy it after you take your photos!)
  • Transportability (is that a word? You get what I mean!)

Go-To Picnic Items I Love

  • Charcuterie board items- cheese, grapes, and crackers
  • A loaf of French bread
  • Fruit- strawberries, watermelon, or any kind of citrus (grapefruit, oranges, lemons)
  • To-go meals from the grocery store (we get ours from Central Market- if you have one near you, they are perfect for picnic items!)
  • Bottled Bai drinks or tea (some flavors look like wine)

Other Food Items You Can Add or Substitute

  • Sandwiches
  • Jam
  • A slice of pie or cake
  • Pizza (so easy to transport and actually very cute in photos!)
  • A pitcher of lemonade or beer
  • Green salads
  • Sliced meats (to go along with the bread)

Props and Other Things to Bring on a Picnic

A couple doing a cheers at a romantic picnic in a field.

So, you have good food… but how do you make a picture-perfect picnic?

It is not just about the food. In fact, that’s actually only a pretty small part of it.

First things first, you’ll want a good camera to capture an Instagram-worthy photo of your perfect picnic.

(Here’s the camera I use and what’s in my camera bag!)

Once you have that and the food, it’s time to look at the broader picture and imagine the setting for your photo.

There are a few things to think about, which I’ll break down for you:

  • Your color scheme
  • The overall vibe
  • Instagram picnic photo props

Your Color Scheme

Photos are a work of art, and part of a good work of art is a good color palette. Don’t try to include too many colors, or your photo will look really busy.

My suggestion is to include three main colors that work together.

Also, don’t forget to include the colors in your environment when thinking of your color palette.

You can see in my photos that I chose greens, whites, and tans with pops of red. Imagine if the flowers here were bright purple- that wouldn’t really go with the overall look!

Or picture me wearing a yellow dress. The photo instantly becomes busier and draws attention away from the wine (which I was advertising here).

The Overall Vibe

Secondly, think of the overall vibe you’re trying to portray.

When you have a theme, vibe, or goal for a photo, basically, that should dictate what items you choose for your picnic.

You hopefully get a romantic vibe from these photos (because that’s what I was going for!).

Following a more romantic theme, I chose baby’s breath flowers, a simple white picnic blanket, a large straw hat, and I wore a lacy dress.

If you wanted a fun and whimsical theme, you might have a more colorful blanket, bright yellow flowers, etc.

The Non-Food Photo Props

Thirdly, you’ll need a few objects to make your picnic more aesthetically pleasing than just food on plates on a blanket. These are the things that will turn a regular picnic into a Pinterest picnic!

As a content creator, I like to invest in photo props that I’ll use and reuse again and again. Here are my go-to Instagram picnic props and why I incorporate them:

  • Flowers– these are great to include because they always add a nice romantic touch, and everyone loves flowers!
  • Picnic Blanket– creates your picnic space. Tip: look for outdoor tablecloths to use as picnic blankets! You can also use bed sheets if you don’t want to get a picnic blanket!
  • Tray– useful because it’s practical when eating food and it groups together parts of your meal to make it more aesthetically pleasing.
  • Cutting boards/charcuterie boards– similar to trays, boards separate parts of the meal and are practical.
  • Picnic basket– it completes your picnic look. This one is just like mine!
  • Cloth napkins– bring them since they are much prettier than paper napkins and are environmentally friendly.
  • White dishes– I like to have all-white dishes because they pretty much go with any color scheme.
  • Wine bottle– whether it’s full or an old empty bottle, it adds romance and a classy touch.
  • Wine glasses– real wine glasses add class and make for good “candid” photos since they are something to hold in your hand and interact with.
  • A matching outfit– you can never go wrong with white. Just be careful when you’re eating and drinking 🙂
  • Oversized candles– for prop purposes only! They add romance.
  • Pillows– they add romance too!
  • A book– to read for romantic vibes and easy candid photos

Don’t forget the practical things

You’ll also want to bring paper towels in case things get messy, sunscreen and bug spray, hand wipes, utensils, water bottles, and knives for cutting things.

Instagram Picnic Aesthetic Inspiration

It’s time for some picnic pictures! Here are some posts I’ve saved on Instagram. These people are nailing the Pinterest picnic aesthetic with their photoshoots! (I also include some reels/TikToks after this section!)

Picnic Instagram Reel / TikTok Inspiration

And here are some picnic Instagram reel videos in case you’re looking to capture some video during your picnic photoshoot!

Picnic Captions for Instagram

Now that you’ve decided on your picnic set-up along with the vibe you want to give, you might also want to choose the perfect picnic Instagram caption!

Basically, you can use picnic quotes or even inspirational lines for your caption. Some creators like to use puns because they are a great way to inject some humor into your posts. Just make sure your quote matches your picnic setup – you wouldn’t want to reference something that isn’t on your photo!

Here are some suggestions:

Picnic Puns

  • Life’s Gouda!
  • You can expect great thymes when you’re on a picnic.
  • Let’s avo-cuddle on the picnic blanket.
  • Wanna go on a picnic? Alpaca lunch!
  • Wine not picnic today?
  • We must ketchup and relish this perfect day!

New Year’s Picnic

  • Happiness is spending the last day of the year with your best buddies.
  • Fireworks and BBQ.
  • The beginning of a hopeful new year. (This looks great with a picture of you and a loved one toasting!)
  • Here’s to a new year of challenges and hope.
  • Open sky, stars, bonfire, you, me, and the countdown to a new year.
  • Bonfire, friends, drinks, and hope for a wonderful new year.

Picnic With Friends and Family

  • Welcome to my patio where it’s always happy hour.
  • Great food? Check. Beer? Check. Blue skies? Check. BFFs? Check. (Just be sure your BFFs are in the picture with you!)
  • There’s nothing like the love of a family to encourage you to face life’s challenges.
  • Food, companions, and daylight.
  • Sunshine and good company make champagne sparkle even more.

Miscellaneous Picnic Quotes

  • If ants are such busy workers, how come they find time to go to all the picnics?
  • A hammock is like a giant net for catching lazy people.
  • Life’s a picnic, appreciate each moment of it.
  • Every picnic is a new adventure.
  • My favorite adventures are in my own backyard. (This is perfect if you’re doing a backyard picnic!)
  • High tides, good vibes. (For a beach picnic!)
  • The only ants invited to this picnic are on a log.
  • Food tastes better when you’re enjoying it on a picnic blanket.
  • Life advice: Go on a picnic, even if it’s just in your backyard.
  • Dinner and a movie? Forget that! I’d rather have a picnic and a waterfall.
  • There are few things so pleasant as a picnic out in the sunshine.
  • Watermelon sugar high.
  • Let’s make this moment special.
  • Life exhortation: Go on a cookout, regardless of whether it’s simply on your terrace or not.
  • There are not many things so pleasant as a cookout with friends and family.
  • Nature is way cheaper than therapy.
  • The earth laughs in flowers.

Of course, if none of these captions work for your picture, then go ahead and create your own!

How to Create a Picture-Perfect Picnic: Conclusion

I’ll end this post with another picnic that I’ve done – a kind of case study putting all of these points together! This is a flat lay from a picnic I set up for some sponsored content working with Freshly, a food company that ships fresh premade meals straight to your door. We’d been eating them for dinner all week, and I realized they would be perfect for a picnic – all you have to do is heat them up in the microwave and insulate them to keep them warm.

To make our food photo-worthy for Insta, I paired our meals with Brie cheese, gluten-free crackers, raspberries, and strawberries. And for a classy touch, I brought a bottle of wine (and some juice to pour into our glasses) and a bouquet of baby’s breath. The colors here are pretty muted besides the food, which helps contribute to the romantic picnic aesthetic!

That’s pretty much all there is to it! I hope this helps you plan your next picnic!

Have fun and enjoy the art of creating something pretty! Comment below if you have any questions or other suggestions.

When was the last time you went on a picnic?

Happy creating,


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About the author
Picture of Jasmine Alley

Jasmine Alley

I'm a Dallas-based, full-time travel blogger with a serious case of wanderlust! Through my website and Instagram, I hope to help others plan picture-perfect trips to the most beautiful places in the world! When I travel, I like to emphasize nature, hidden gems, and unique places.
Picture of Jasmine Alley

Jasmine Alley

I'm a Dallas-based, full-time travel blogger with a serious case of wanderlust! Through my website and Instagram, I hope to help others plan picture-perfect trips to the most beautiful places in the world! When I travel, I like to emphasize nature, hidden gems, and unique places.
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6 Responses

  1. Yesterday was my birthday and I reallly hate taking pictures of myself (and especially dislike sharing them) because I feel like they’re always super basic compared to “aesthetic” ig content. But I feel like I should document life a little more. But this was really helpful, thank you for sharing.

  2. I’ve been following a lot of different picnic posts and I have to say your post has been one of many that inspired me to start a pop up picnic business! Thank you for sharing all the things needed to create a really nice aesthetic photo. We’re in the social media era so everything is definitely for the gram! 😀

    1. Thank you so much, that is so kind! I definitely agree that social media has changed the way we do things! I’m all for finding beauty wherever we are, and a picnic definitely helps to enhance that! Congrats on the pop-up picnic business, I’m sure it will thrive!

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