In Get the look, How Tos, Inspiration, Trends

The tea party is a much-loved tradition that has stood the test of time, and for good reason. A tea party is a place to gather to enjoy refreshments and snacks in the company of friends, family or even for business. Hosting a tea party is grounds to use your finest crockery, best cutlery, whip up your most decadent treats (calories don’t count if it’s for tea) and indulge.

5 types of tea party.

So you’ve given some thought to hosting your own tea party but you don’t know where to start with a menu, here are some simple ideas based on a long history of gatherings around tea:

  • Afternoon tea – a low key casual affair set in your living room where tea and a small selection of confectionaries are served.
  • High tea – a more formal gathering usually around a dining area with a huge spread of both sweet and savory snacks as well as a selection of hot and cold drinks are served.
  • Cream tea – home-made scones are a must, served with thick clotted cream, a selection of jams, cheese and butter.
  • Royal tea – everything we love about afternoon tea but including champagne.
  • Japanese inspired tea ceremony – a green tea and dim sum option as a slightly different spin on the English inspired treat.

Doing tea parties the proper way – the Do’s of tea parties.

Have some fun learning about the historical decorum surrounding the tea party tradition. Or if you prefer, play host to a super traditional British Tea party where your guests learn a little tea-history at the same time.

Tea party rules:

  • Tea time attire – trade in your jeans and t-shirt for formal tea fashion: dresses, hat or fascinator, jewelry and gloves.  Tea parties are a great excuse to get dressed up in your best vintage clothing finds.
  • Use your best crockery and cutlery – bring out the collections you inherited, or your wedding registry gifts, now is the hour to put them to use.
  • Add your milk first – it saves your porcelain from cracking.
  • Don’t stir, fold! It’s considered good manners to trade in stirring your tea in a circular motion for slow folding.
  • Dunking biscuits is a no-no, sadly, it is just far too messy.
  • Start with serving sandwiches, follow with scones and finish off with sweets in that order.

Top Teatime tip: it is considered the best manners to serve all finger foods from a tiered cake stand.

Shop cake stands

Cute tea party ideas.

Choose a theme for dress code and décor. Our top tea party themes for 2022 are:

  1. Bridgerton Victorian High Tea – an opulent, romantic yet traditional ‘Regencycore’ affair all set out in pastel colours and florals.
  2. Wes Anderson aesthetic / The Grand Budapest Hotel Royal Tea – a nostalgic 70’s affair with pops of bold colour paired with soft pastels.
  3. Parisian Café Afternoon Tea – tiny French patisseries with guests dressed all red, white and navy nautical stripes.
  4. Boho Garden Tea Party – think dried florals, macramé décor and muted tones.
  5. Bring Your Own Teacup Party – a lovely idea to bring a teacup as a gift for the host.

Shop teacups.

What you’ll need to host your tea party.

Essentials you’ll need to wow your guests:

  • Forever florals for your table settings.
  • A selection of tea pots for brewing tea.
  • Serveware for your confectionaries.
  • Extra seating for your guests.
  • More teacups and tea spoons than you ever thought you needed.
  • A baking kit to make the food prep easy!
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