I don’t know about you, but I’ve loved tea parties ever since I was a little girl! There’s just something delightful about taking a moment to sip a warm cup of tea with a friend (or some lemonade with your favorite doll)! I think it’s a tradition we never tire of and that’s why an adult tea party is a wonderful event to host for a friend’s birthday, a baby shower, a bridal shower, Mother’s Day or even as an excuse to gather your girls! So grab a cup of tea and take a leisurely scroll through this Vintage Tea Party to gather inspiration for a fun gathering with your girls!
Ideas for Hosting a Vintage Tea Party
As Valentine’s Day was drawing near, Debra Adams jumped at the chance to throw a tea party for her fellow living historians, a Galentine’s Day celebration if you will, to celebrate their shared love of history and friendship. Her event is full of great ideas for hosting a tea party of your own and I can’t wait to share it all with you! But first, let’s make sure we’re all on the same page when it comes to “tea…”
There are several different “types” of tea parties you can throw… high tea, afternoon tea, cream tea, light tea… The Spruce Eats has a wonderful article detailing the differences between the various types and I was surprised to learn that the “high tea” we Americans usually think of (with scones, tea sandwiches and bite sized desserts) is technically considered “full tea.” Who knew tea was so complicated?!
With that said, Debra Adam’s tea party for her girlfriends most closely resembled full tea and featured a lovely variety of scrumptious snacks.
As she welcomed guests wearing vintage dresses into her home built in 1901, she offered them a sparkling pink champagne welcome cocktail and they gathered in the parlor to catch up and visit with each other. Don’t they look amazing in their fancy dresses?!
Tea Party Food and Drink Ideas
Debra served a variety of tea options in her collection of teapots, set out with her china teacups and saucers. Tables were covered in vintage lace tablecloths, keeping with the theme of the party. Simple pastel colored place cards were used to identify the teas and foods throughout the party. And how adorable are those teaspoons?! We found a similar silver set of teaspoons here you could use for your party.
Full tea that afternoon consisted of quiche, three types of tea sandwiches, endive with seafood salad, pimento cheese and bacon bites, and butternut squash soup – served in small teacups! A tea party is the perfect opportunity to bring out family china, heirloom serving pieces and beautiful tiered serving trays.
Tea Party Dessert Ideas
After eating, guests enjoyed authentic parlor games traditionally played during the 1860-1890 era. Winners received tea-related prizes like luxury teas, tea drops, scone mixes, Tea Lovers Coloring books and ceramic tea cups. Following the games, guests enjoyed more hot tea along with a variety of beautiful desserts, including macarons, scones, chocolate cream puffs, lemon squares and custom cookies provided by Cake Designs by Debra and Trader Joes.
I love that Debra opted for simple florals throughout the party which she got from Trader Joes. Tulips on the main table and roses in a teapot were the perfect touch for this gathering of ladies and kept the focus on the food and historical details.
As you can see from this small gathering of friends, a tea party doesn’t have to be a big elaborate event. Finger foods, bite sized desserts and a few warm pots of tea are all you really need to create a special celebration for those you love.
Be sure to check out our 70th Birthday Tea Party for other ideas as well!
Photographer: Brandy Angel Photography
Bakery: Cake Designs by Debra