Get Fancy with These Tea Party Ideas
Tea parties are fun gatherings for casual afternoons, no matter what you’re celebrating. Birthdays, bridal showers, baby showers, graduations and other major life events are great occasions for a tea party, but they also make a fun “just because” gathering for your friends and family. If you’re wondering how to host a tea party, these ideas from Pottery Barn can help you get inspired and start planning.
If you want, choosing a themed tea party can provide some guidance for everything from your decorations to the food and tea you might serve. Elaborate themes can focus on iconic tea parties like the Mad Hatter’s from Alice in Wonderland, but if you’d rather go for something more unstructured, you can capture the elegance of the English countryside or embrace a rustic feel with your decor and refreshments. Your theme can also relate to the purpose of the party. If you’re throwing a tea party bridal shower, you might consider incorporating the wedding colors into your decor or use a subtly sweet romance theme with some heart-shaped decorative items.
Take It Outside
Something about the refined relaxation of a tea party makes it just perfect for an outdoor setting. This is especially true of an afternoon tea party that’s timed so you can take advantage of warm sunshine. If you have a patio, lawn, garden or porch, go ahead and use it. Set up a comfortable table and some chairs as your blank canvas, and then get to work setting up the ultimate garden party with pretty linens. fresh flowers and dainty, tasty treats.
Let Your Decor Blossom
Tea parties and flowers are the perfect match. There’s a reason so many English-style teacups are decorated with floral patterns, after all! Whether you host indoors or out, it’s a great idea to use flowers to decorate for your tea party. You can make a dramatic floral centerpiece in a large vase or opt for a more rustic touch by using smaller bundles of blooms in Mason jars. You can even make teacups part of your decor by using them as containers for flowers. Start by cutting floral foam to fit inside your teacup and trim down the stems of some blooms. Roses, daisies, tulips, ranunculus, peonies and daffodils are all great choices. Use floral wire to stick your flowers in the foam and create a teacup in full bloom for each place at the table.
A Marvelous Menu
Tea parties often include some small snacks for guests to enjoy as they sip their tea and chat. Classic finger sandwiches piled high on a tiered serving stand are always a tea party staple, and they’re a fantastic choice because you can make them as modern or traditional as you like. They also make it so easy to accommodate a range of different dietary needs. From classic cucumber sandwiches to something zesty like a curried chickpea salad, you can get creative with your sandwich fillings and presentation to delight your guests.
Feel free to include some bite-sized sweets too. Fruit tarts, petit fours, mini muffins and small scones are all great choices for your tea party menu. Set out some small bowls of jam, lemon curd and clotted cream for that classic English tea party experience. You can also co oh-so-continental with mini quiche and macarons.
Don’t Forget the Tea!
It’s a great idea to offer your guests a selection of different teas, including both caffeinated and herbal varieties. Depending on how large your party is, you can set each guest up with their own teapot to make refills easy and make sure everyone has as much tea as they want. If you serve loose-leaf tea, remember to provide strainers for guests to place over their cups as they pour so they can catch any errant bits that strain out of the teapot. Provide a small saucer or plate for guests to place the strainer on when they’re finished pouring.