I so enjoy a tea party. There’s nothing quite like it. The diminutive fare, each course specially crafted and then paired with a delicious tea—there’s so much to love. It’s an especially great way to teach children proper manners. The ceremony of tea captures their young imaginations and allows them to enjoy each step of the process.
For those of you who share my love of tea, the editors of Victoria have created a special treat with their latest Classics special edition, Tea Pleasures. With a focus on the joys of a proper tea party, the issue includes ideas and instructions for party planning, table settings, and how to brew the perfect cup. Not to mention the menus for a variety of teatime gatherings!
As a special taste of what the issue has to offer, they are sharing their suggestions for creating a lovely tablescape. If you love tea, you won’t want to miss everything Tea Pleasures has to offer!
Tips for arranging a beautiful teatime table from Tea Pleasures:
- A balanced tablescape should include a fabric element, a floral or botanical element, accent pieces, and a light source that enhances without overwhelming or washing out the look you wish to achieve.
- The basis of a dazzling tablescape is fine linens. If your selection is limited or you are just beginning your collection, choose solid-colored tablecloths in neutral shades. These can be paired more easily with a variety of sheer fabrics, runners, and other table toppers to create different looks for special occasions.
- For a casual buffet, consider arranging flatware in creative containers, such as baskets, pails, or old-fashioned milk bottles. For more formal dinners, wrap individual sets of cutlery in a napkin tied with festive ribbon or braided cording.
- When appropriate to the party theme, use personal collections as accents, as well as the basis for centerpieces. For instance, colorful teapots can double as vases for floral arrangements, while a display of mismatched crystal candleholders on a mirrored surface adds a subtle glow.
- Incorporate a variety of textures in your tablescape design: porcelain, brocade, flowers and greenery, fresh fruit, silver, and vermeil—all can be mixed and matched to create a stunning table.
- If table space is limited, consider a hanging centerpiece. A kissing ball or a decorative wreath can be suspended easily from a chandelier or other light fixture.
- Display decorative items in staggered heights. This also can help open up additional table space, if needed.
- Use the hues and tones reflected in your china of choice as a guideline when developing a color scheme for the tablescape. For instance, if the plates are etched in platinum or gold, repeat that color in some element of the tabletop arrangement.