Tips That Will Make Your Outdoor Tea Party Sensational

What is a Garden Tea Party? It’s pretty much afternoon tea taken outside!

Your backyard, your front yard, the park — when the clouds clear and the weather warms up we also enjoy taking tea outside. There’s nothing better than sipping strong tea from elegant cups — surrounded by flowers, greenery, and sunshine. 

Afternoon tea started as a casual indoor snack time for upper-class ladies. It eventually turned into an outdoor garden party event that included their gentlemen, too. Finger-sized foods, scones, and tea were immaculately displayed on tables adorned with fine linens.

Today, afternoon tea is for all people - not just the well-to-do. But we still use tea time as an excuse to dress in our best, snack on delectables, and enjoy celebrations of all kinds. If you’re hosting a garden tea or attending a garden tea party we have some fun tips to make the event simply smashing.

Garden Tea Party Dress Code

Tea is never a time for grungy jeans and old T-shirts. A lot of work goes into making a fabulous garden tea. Do your part and dress respectfully in smart casual or semi-formal attire. 

If you’re a guest, always consider the theme of the party. You don’t want to mistakenly clash with the rest of the guests. At times, there are exceptions to the rules and if you’re invited to arrive in costume please do so.

Dresses, fascinators, hats, dress shirts, slacks, and accessories are encouraged at any garden tea party. If you’re attending a spring or summer tea party wear lights or whites to ward off the heat. If you’re attending an autumn garden tea, consider wearing jewel tones or cozy colors in heavier fabrics to reflect the time of year.

7 Celebrations That Are the Perfect Excuse for a Garden Tea Party

Anytime is a good time for tea. You don’t need an excuse to host your own garden tea party. But if you feel that you need a reason, here are some fun celebrations that are perfect for tea in the garden:

  1. Wedding Showers & Engagement Parties

Are you recently engaged? Congratulations! One of the best ways to celebrate your upcoming ceremony is with a beautiful wedding shower surrounded by your closest friends and family. An engagement garden tea party is also a fantastic way to bring together both sides of your future family because tea is for everyone

  1. Baby Showers & Sprinkles

It doesn’t matter if this is your first or your seventh little one. You and the baby are worth celebrating! A baby sprinkle or shower is a perfect excuse to lounge in the garden with a teacup — snacks in hand — and enjoy lighthearted laughs, games, and conversation. 

  1. Birthdays

Your day comes around only once a year so it’s up to you to celebrate it to the fullest. And a tea party is just your jam — complete with Devonshire cream and scones! Bring the tea party outside — or if the weather doesn’t behave, you can host your own indoor garden tea party a la Great Gatsby style with bouquets and cascades of flowers.

  1. Special Milestones 

Do you have an upcoming graduation, retirement party, or new career on the horizon? It’s time to celebrate with all of those who have supported you along the way. No matter the milestone, you can celebrate with a garden tea party that reflects all that this moment embodies — all of your hard work and success. You deserve this!

  1. Mother’s Day & Father’s Day

Tea isn’t just for Mother’s Day it’s for Father’s Day too! Set up a garden tea party that takes advantage of the bright sunny weather and the blooming seasonal flowers. Add a fun theme to Mother’s or Father’s Day tea — consider a nerdy theme for your mum or dad if they like Star Trek or Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. There is no shortage of tea quotes in the world of nerdism.

  1. Charity Events

If you’re part of a community or group that needs to raise a little money, a charity garden tea event may be your ticket to hitting your goal. Host a cream tea or a light tea at your local park or community center garden — this way you can accommodate a large number of guests who show up for your garden tea party charity event.

  1. Book Clubs & Friendship Gatherings

Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy agree that good books and tea go hand in hand. Friendship is built on intimate conversations and a garden tea is a beautiful way to celebrate your connection with people that have common interests. Host a casual garden tea, picnic style, with some of your closest bookworm friends. 

The Garden Tea Party Essentials

We have everything you need to know about your teacups, saucers, and teapots, below. But, here are the rest of the must-haves for a successful and delightful garden tea party:

  1. The Right Venue

You’ll want your venue to host all of your guests comfortably. Host your party in your backyard or a community space. You can even host your event at the local tea garden or a park — just make sure to get all the necessary permits required for the event if you’ll be in a public space.

Traditionally, a garden tea party is afternoon tea enjoyed outside. Your guest list may be smaller and include only six people, or it might be hearty and include over 40 people. Feel free to adjust the diversity of the menu to accommodate the number of guests. 

  1. Finger Foods & Tiny Treats

If you’re hosting a lot of people, consider hosting a cream tea or a light tea in the garden instead of a full afternoon tea. Afternoon tea in the garden is beautiful, but should be avoided if you have over 12 guests — that is unless you have a helping hand or two!

No matter what kind of tea party you decide to host, you should always serve scones and put out some jam and Devonshire cream. Plain or raisin are two fairly neutral and popular flavors for scones. Strawberry or raspberry jam are also staples. 

Traditional English treats like mini cakes and pastries are also scrumptious. A small selection of finger sandwiches and savories adds a well-rounded assortment of flavors to the food display.

  1. Teas & Drinks

Always have at least a few types of teas to choose from. We recommend steeping a neutral black tea such as an English Breakfast or Earl Grey to serve as the star of the show. It’s also good to have a decaffeinated or caffeine-free tea for those who are caffeine sensitive or intollerant. Good accompaniments for tea are whole milk, sugar, honey, and lemon. 

If the weather is very warm, hot tea might be out of the question. But iced tea is always a refreshing treat. We have iced tea recipes for every time of year that highlight the best of each season. 

Place a handful of borosilicate glass iced tea pitchers on the table for guests to freely enjoy. These pitchers are perfect for hot and iced tea, infused water, and coffee.

  1. Additional Elements

The Food and Guest Tables

A garden tea party has to withstand the inevitable natural elements — mainly the sun, wind, and uneven terrain. Set out your food and tea on a long table so everyone can help themselves to the goodies and drinks at their own whim. Set up a large table or smaller tables so everyone can enjoy their tea at their leisure. 

Plates, Silverware, and Linens

We recommend staying away from plastic and paper plates. Use authentic glass teaware, plates, linen napkins, and metal utensils instead. This not only helps weigh down your tablecloths, but it’s a higher-class experience for your guests. 

Parasols & Fans

Give your guests a little relief from the sun with parasols. If the day is a little warmer, you can offer them a cute and fun fan to help cool off. Give them away as party favors or collect them to use for your next garden tea party outing. 

The Best Advice for Tea Party Wares

Imagine having a tea set that works perfectly for your Alice in Wonderland Mad Hatter Tea, your best friend’s bridal shower, and your holiday friendship gathering. It’s possible with a tea set from Teabloom. 

Do you have any desire to host more than one tea party in your lifetime? If so, we recommend investing in a borosilicate glass tea set for both looks and practicality. Not only is it a perfect neutral backdrop for any themed tea party, but it might be the best material for teapots and tea cups.

Borosilicate glass is a chemically neutral, clean, and sustainable material that’s used for equipment in laboratories — it’s even stable enough to store nuclear waste. Teabloom has taken this same material and developed a superior line of teaware. Their tea sets are tasteless, stain-free, easy to clean, and safe for extreme temperatures — which makes them ideal for both hot and iced teas. 

When you choose Teabloom’s handcrafted glass teaware, you set yourself up for success. Not only is this material ideal for your health, but it’s the most reliable setup for any afternoon or garden tea party. Simply accessorize your tablescape with themed decor sprawled about your tea collection from Teabloom.

Bring your tea party to life and find your forever tea set with Teabloom, today.