In this post: Got the winter blues? An afternoon tea party is a delightful way to celebrate a winter afternoon. Here are tips to help you set a pretty winter table.⇒
One of the most delightful ways to spend a winter afternoon is to host an afternoon tea party for a group of friends. It’s the perfect time to bring out your vintage china and set a lovely table with some favorite pieces.
And what better way to incorporate seasonal flavor than with flowers? This is particularly true in winter when we are craving a bit of beauty and ‘life’ indoors. Flowers can impart the colors of the season, as well as the general spirit, so I’ve arranged a winter bouquet for this afternoon tea party.
January isn’t the easiest month to find flowers at the market but I managed to pull together a lovely grouping of varied winter white varieties. The table is set with my beloved vintage china collection and the soft colors contrast nicely with the bits of nature provided by the pinecones.
I started with white hydrangeas as they add a lushness to any winter bouquet. I remember as a child we used to call these snowball flowers, so they seemed an apt place to begin. (Actually there may be a technical difference between snowballs and hydrangea, but I’m no botanist, so we’ll just let that slide.)
The floral theme is picked up in the delicate china, as seen here in this vintage teapot. I selected my lightest and whitest china patterns to keep the table feeling especially wintery.
Roses seem to be available all year round and I tucked in a few creamy white ones throughout the arrangement.
You can also see the lovely white calla lilies acting as a bit of a sculptural base upon which to build the rest of the presentation. They add interesting lines and feel more durable than the softer flowers they appear to bolster.
For a touch of fun I included some gerber daisies, which always seem to be smiling and saying good morning.
On the table each place is set with a small soup bowl in addition to the teacups. What better way to add warmth to a winter day than with hot elixirs like soup and tea?
Here you can glimpse the mix of flowers working nicely with some winter greens.
The vase is one of my vintage pitchers in a silver repoussé pattern.
Soft linen napkins nestled in a copper ring keep the tone seasonally white.
I always love to add some taller flowers for height and interest and love the way the stock drapes over the edge.
The full effect is pretty and uplifting, but unmistakably says winter to me. Perhaps the ring of pine cones helps with that effort, but so does the all white winter bouquet.
How delighted I am to keep fresh flowers in the house all year long!
And after the tea, they can move seamlessly into the dining room where they contrast beautifully with the dark rich woods of the dining table. Here’s hoping you all stay warm this winter!
Afternoon Tea Party Resource List
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