While brunch is great, there can be a bit of a “been there, done that'' mentality. If you’re looking to host something different, whether just a simple get together for your nearest and dearest or an elevated style of gathering, a tea party is sure to delight any guest of honor.
Less involved than a dinner party, a tea party can be as casual or as formal as you’d like. And whether you’d prefer to keep things as simple as possible or host an afternoon tea worthy of a queen, here’s a list of planning tips to help you get started.
Save The Date: Do you prefer brunch or a traditional mid to late afternoon tea time? How many people are on your guest list? Once you’ve selected a date and time, you can send out your invitations. This will also impact if you are doing an afternoon tea service or a high tea service.
Set The Table: Whether you’re hosting a regal high tea or a whimsical baby shower, you’ll want to set an inviting table. Classic teapots, delicate teacups, tiered trays, and coordinating linens are a must when setting up for a tea party. While some of these may be classic creams and whites, others may be designed with flowers, leaves and other traditionally English motifs.
When it comes to table linens, you’ll want to set the scene and build a unique tablescape, while staying true to the traditional tea party roots. The Primrose Garden collection is the perfect fit for tea parties, as it was especially designed with these events in mind. You can also set a sophisticated table with the Jolie Fleur collection, or mix and match your tea party best with the neutral-yet-elegant Contempo in pink, sage or blue. Looking for something worthy of a very merry un-birthday celebration? Opt for the Royal Paisley collection.
Plan The Menu: An afternoon tea service will include pastries, finger sandwiches, scones and cake, while a high tea is a more robust meat-and-potatoes-based meal and is usually offered in the early evening. And, of course, don’t forget the tea! Have a variety of teas on hand along with cream, sugar, lemon, and honey to ensure that there’s something for everyone. Looking to take it to the next level? Gather mini teapots for all your guests to individually pour from, then allow them to take them home as a favor.
Pour A Cuppa: If you intend on following true tea party etiquette, you may have to take a few minutes to teach your guests the basics of straining and pouring delicious tea over fresh tea leaves. But if you’re taking a more laid back approach, greet each guest with a glass of bubbly before sitting down to enjoy their company.