What little girl [or big girls too really] doesn't love a Tea Party?!
Well, that's exactly what my daughter and her best friend, born a week apart, wanted for their 6th birthday party. Truthfully it's easy to go a bit over the top for little kids' themed birthday parties these days. But I'm of the mind set to "Work Smart Not Hard", but make it look incredible at the same time of course. So this time my goal was to keep it simple, yet little girl sophisticated!
Budget is also a contributing factor. Besides the cost of the food, which you can make as easy or extravagant as you want, the overall cost of this party was very inexpensive. Actually, I bought all the decor items at my fave $1 Store! It did help however, that my daughter Teagan is my Dad's little "Tea cup", so he had already started quite the tea cup collection for her. But you don't have to look very hard to find some beautifully decorated tea cups, trays, plates, and more at vintage stores and places like Salvation Army. So have fun with it and mix it up!
Welcome to our Tea Party.... enjoy Darling!
"Yes, that's it! Said the Hatter with a sigh, it's always tea time." Lewis Carroll, Adventures of Alice in Wonderland
"My dear if you could give me a cup of tea to clear my muddle of a head I should better understand your affairs." Charles Dickens
Step 1: We Started by Picking The....
THEME: that's easy, Tea Party!
COLOR SCHEME: Teal & Pink
DECOR: Tea Cups, tea spoons, paper flowers, & more tea cups
ACTIVITY: Decorating tea cups [of course] & a dress up photo op
PARTY FAVORS: Pink satin gloves & the tea cups the girls decorated
FOOD: a birthday cake for each birthday girl, cupcakes, little pettifor cakes, tea sandwiches, and other small bites
Step 2: Birthday Girl Dresses
Teagan and her friend Blake had to have matching outfits of course. So to make the party extra special for the birthday girls, I customized a cute, teal, lace dress from Target.
- I added a belt out of dark pink ribbon with roses that were already sewn onto the ribbon. This was easily done by wrapping the ribbon around each girls' waist to see how long I needed specifically for them.
- Before cutting the ribbon, add another 24" to make sure there is enough length to tie a nice bow with long ends hanging down in the back. *Because these very "lady like" little girls run around quite a bit, I took two safety pins and pinned the ribbon in place from the inside of the dress.
- They love puffed sleeves, so I put a little stitch on the sleeves to give it more volume like a puffed sleeve.
- I also added the rose ribbon as a trim to their white satin gloves. I did this by hand, with a simple straight stitch going along both the top and bottom edge of the ribbon.
Step 3: DECOR:
- I wanted the party decorations to be simple to both make and set up. They still had to be fun and make a statement though. To do this, I incorporated the chandeliers above the Dinging Room and Kitchen tables. That added a touch of drama and interest by drawing the eye up instead of just to the table setting.
**Note: Don't forget to think about lighting when decorating for parties and in general. Lighting can have a huge impact in a space. I make a lot of my lighting fixtures for myself and clients. However, the black chandelier in the Kitchen is called the Heavy Guy.
- My daughter really wanted to use her tea cup collection from my Dad as decoration, but I didn't want them to get broken. So I hung them from the chandelier above the Dining Room table, where they couldn't get knocked over.
- To make sure they were secured well, and to keep them from swaying too much, I hung them with pink and green wire. *Make sure the wire is thicker than the average green floral wire.
- I then added paper flowers I made [tutorial coming soon] along the top of the linear chandelier for extra fun.
- For the Kitchen chandelier [aka Heavy Guy], I hung a collection of vintage spoons from pink and green ribbon. So easy!
- Just like the hanging tea cups, I hung the spoons at varying lengths to add interest.
**Note: Like the paper flowers, make sure to always use a variety of different sizes, colors, and textures when decorating a space.
Step 4: PHOTO OP:
- To make the background for the Photo Op, I took two rectangular plastic tablecloths [one white & one light pink], and hung them together lengthwise.
- I first hung the white one using duct tape to secure it to the wall. Then taped the pink tablecloth to the white one with clear packing tape. Making sure the pink top layer covered the not so pretty silver duct tape, that was really what was securing the backdrop to the wall.
**NOTE: Many types of tape, especially duct tape, can actually remove paint from your wall. So make sure to test it in a spot that won't be seen first. You could also use other products like command strips for this kind of application.
- After hanging the tablecloths, make cuts about every 3-4" going all the way up, leaving at least 6" at the top as a header. *It might be easier to lay them out on the floor before doing this, but I didn't want my adorable dogs hair to static cling to the streamers ;)
- To have more dimension, I added a cluster of the paper flowers I made.
- My daughter collected some of her favorite dress up items, purses, hats, tutus etc and we put them in baskets for the girls to pull from if they wanted for the pictures.
Step 5: FOOD:
- I won't even attempt to tell you how to make desserts, because that is NOT my forte. Thankfully my talented friend [who is also the other birthday girl's mom], made them all!
- I love how she used the teal & pink color scheme, especially using the contrasting frosting for the layers of the two birthday cakes.
- I did however make some jelly sandwiches and a few other non dessert items. Again, because I like to make life easy for myself, whenever possible, the sandwiches are very easy to make.
- I simply cut off the crusts and used tiny cookie cutters on one of the two pieces of bread, then put the jelly on the other. Ta-da!
- Sticking with the color scheme, we made a fruit punch drink that was dark pink with swirls of green and lighter pink. How did you do that you ask?
- One liter of fruit punch
- One liter of Seven Up or Sprite
- Scoops of rainbow sherbet
Step 6: ACTIVITY / PARTY FAVOR:
**Note: I almost always tag team these two, by making the activity become the party favor. This makes it something special that won't get tossed as soon as they get home, and cuts down on overall cost of the party.
- In addition to buying a pair of pink satin gloves for each girl, they decorated their own tea cups with paint markers and sharpies. No steps by hostess needed except a little shopping!
This activity really could not have been easier and the girls LOVED it!
Runner Up in the