Like what I wrote in my New Year’s Resolutions, I want to throw more tea parties at home. I prefer organizing teatime with friends as it’s easier to prepare and host compared to dinner parties.
Yesterday, I had my first tea time of the year at Maison Epperson. I scheduled a meeting with some friends who I’m excited to collaborate with. It’s always fun and chill to brainstorm ideas over tea and some sweet and savoury treats.
Did you know? Anna, the Duchess of Bedford (1788-1861) is credited as the creator of teatime. Because the noon meal had become skimpier, the Duchess suffered from “a sinking feeling” at about four o’clock in the afternoon. At first the Duchess had her servants sneak her a pot of tea and a few breadstuffs. Adopting the European tea service format, she invited friends to join her for an additional afternoon meal at five o’clock in her rooms at Belvoir Castle. The menu centered around small cakes, bread and butter sandwiches, assorted sweets, and, of course, tea. This summer practice proved so popular, the Duchess continued it when she returned to London, sending cards to her friends asking them to join her for “tea and a walking the fields.” The practice of inviting friends to come for tea in the afternoon was quickly picked up by other social hostesses.
For a stress-free and fun tea time, all you need are the basics and your personal touch. Here are some of my tips:
Clean slate. Whether you’re throwing a tea party or dinner date at home, a clutter-free and clean living area is a must. It’s easy to throw last minute affairs or random cocktail parties when your house is organized and presentable.
Push cart. Having a bar cart or tea trolley makes entertaining easy. If you don’t have one, create a drink station for your guests using a tray or use a portion of your dining table and arrange your beverages and food on one side. This makes a stylish and functional set-up.
Give them the finger. Finger food such as mini sandwiches and bite-sized treats are heavenly teatime delights.
Sometimes, there’s just no time to bake. Store bought treats are fine.
Make something homemade for your guests. Finger sandwiches are easy to make.
Serve assorted chocolates
Serve different kinds of teas
Do tea pairings. Chamomile, green tea, or English Breakfast are popular teas served by the modern day hostess. I like serving exotic teas like raspberry and peach. The fruity flavors go well with the salty caviar and is also divine with lemon cookies too. Non-tea drinkers usually like fruity teas.
Side bar. Provide tea condiments like warm milk and sugar. Don’t forget to place an extra spoon too.
Fun crew. Invite fun and positive people to your party. To have fun, choose happy friends!
My first guest was Mia de Lara. She is graphic designer and is responsible for designing my logo and website. I love her work!
The gang’s all here!
Meet Barbie Pardo-Tiangco. She’s an interior designer and the woman behind Bash Events. Barbie and I go waaaaay back. We used to hangout when we were younger (like last year. CHOZ!), but life happened and we haven’t found the time to get together until yesterday. Oh, she’s pregnant too! Congrats, Barbs!!!
Party favors. Send off your guests with memorable giveaways.
Thank you Barbie for bringing these deadly Japanese cheese balls! It’s TDF!!!
A fun party always ends in clutter. Haha!
Shoppingera, for more tea party tips, grab a copy of my book, ‘Fashion + Home: Entertaining at Home in Style’ at National Book Store and Powerbooks branches!