A few times a year, I like to plan and host a tea party for a few of my closest girlfriends.
What exactly is a tea party? A tea party is a social gathering at which tea and light refreshments are served. This social gathering is usually held during the mid-morning or mid-afternoon hours.
When it comes to hosting a party, you will need to make your plans 3-4 weeks in advance. Here are the things that you need to plan for.
Date and Time - You will need to choose a day and time. This social gathering typically lasts for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Location - You can hold the gathering at your own home (indoors or outdoors) or find a relaxing location such as your local country club or garden park.
Theme - What kind of theme would you like for your party? You could do a mother and daughter, school friends, neighbors, co-workers or a moms/grandmothers theme.
Invitations - Your invitations should fit the theme of your party. They need to include all of the necessary information such as: Who, What, When and Where. Your invitations should be mailed out to your guests 2 weeks before the party date.
Supplies - What kind of supplies will you need? You will need: a variety of teas, food, teapots, tea kettle, teacups, tea bag holders, sugar, creamers, demitasse spoons, dessert plates, silverware, serving plates, napkins and a lace tablecloth.
Food - The food that you serve during a tea party should be on the light side. Scones, muffins, pastries, fancy cookies, tarts, biscotti and small sandwiches work best. You could also offer a full-size dessert cake, chocolate covered fruits and chocolate truffles.
Teas - You should serve your guests a variety of teas. Black teas are the most popular here in North America followed by green teas. In addition to your teas, offer some accompaniments such as creamer, milk, sugar, sugar substitutes, lemon and honey.
These are the main steps that you will need to take to have a successful tea party. The most important part is to make it enjoyable, fun and stress-free, for you and your guests.
Shelly Hill has been holding tea parties for family and friends for several years. You can visit Shelly's popular foodie blog called Shakin 'N Bakin in the Kitchen at http://wahmshelly.blogspot.com for free recipes, cooking tips and menu ideas.