Monthly Archives: February 2008

Napkin Folding Ideas

Napkin Folding Ideas

Here is one good site for napkin folding ideas and instructions. Enjoy!

http://www.customlinenservice.com/napkins.htm

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Tea Party Check List

A Hostess Check List

If you don’t have it all, use the best you have. Your guests will feel honored no matter what you do because of the spirit in which you offer your hospitality.

Tablecloth, Napkins, Napkin Rings
Centerpiece
Tea cups and Saucers
Teakettle
Teapot (2 if small)
Tea strainer if using loose tea
Serving Plates or tiered plates
Dish for lemon
Lemon fork
Sugar bowl or Honey pot
Sugar spoon or tongs
Cream pitcher
Dessert plates
Tea spoons
Knives
Forks
Small dish for jam or lemon curd
Small spoon for jam dish
Small dish for clotted cream
Small knive or spoon for clotted cream dish
Small hostess gifts (if desired)
Sugar or honey, sliced lemon, milk or cream
Tea and tasty food, of course

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Other Useful Tea Party Tips

Other Useful Tea Tips:

– Sweeten your tea party with one of the following alternatives to honey or sugar:
candied violets, molded sugars, raw sugar, hardened frosting flowers, or rock candy crystals.

– Consider using miss matched plates and saucers for a charming effect.

– Try adding a pinch of cloves to black tea before you brew it.

– Use hot apple or cranberry juice in place of water to brew tea.

– Co-hostess your tea with someone else and pool you’re resources and creativity.

– Be prepared to spend the gift of your time. You don’t want to hurry your guests.

– Look in magazines and catalogs for table decoration ideas such as doilies, placecards, a fancy chocolate or mint, etc.

– If your guests don’t know each other well, consider ahead of time how you might want to introduce them to each other, and think about warm topics of conversation you can bring to the table or ice breakers for the beginning of your tea party.

– Wreaths, ribbons, flowers and ivy can be used as a base for a variety of items, such as candles, nativity sets, vases, small trees, topiaries, fresh flowers, potted plants, baskets, sea shells, etc.

– Small battery-operated sets of clear Christmas lights can add a gentle glow when incorporated in your centerpiece.

– Simple, affordable ideas are usually the most successful ones.

– Make a small centerpiece look bigger by using a round, flat mirror under it.

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Brewing a Good Pot of Tea

Brewing a Good Pot of Tea

There are a lot of good websites for brewing the perfect pot of tea, but here are the basics.

1. Empty the tea kettle and refill it with fresh cold water. Put the kettle on to boil.

2. Pour hot water into the teapot to warm it. Ceramic or glass teapots work best. Tea brewed in a metal pot may have a metallic taste.

3. Pour hot water out of teapot after it has warmed. (Check to see how many cups it holds.) Measure one spoonful of loose tea for each cup desired into the pot and one extra spoonful for the pot. If using teabags, use one bag less than the desired number of cups.

4. As soon as the water comes to a rolling boil, remove from heat. If you overboil the water it will lose oxygen and your tea will taste flat.

5. Pour boiling water into teapot and let brew for 3-6 minutes. Small leaves take less time to brew than large leaves.

6. Stir tea. If tea bags were used, remove them before serving. For loose tea, use a tea strainer when pouring into the teacups.

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Christmas Tea Menu

Christmas Tea Menu

Orange Spiced Tea*
Peppermint Herbal tea
Peppermint sticks or reception sticks for tea stirrers
Piquant Ham Squares*
Chicken Salad Ribbons*
Assorted Cheese & Fruit Tray
Scones with Cinnamon & Sugar Topping *(Use our Best Scones recipe)
Cranberry Orange Bread*
Gingerbread-Lemon Pinwheel Cookies*
Lemon Curd*
Raspberry Freezer Jam*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

*For these recipes, check out our free tea recipes blog: teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, tea spices, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

Autumn/Winter Tea Menus

Autumn Tea Menu

Apple & Cinnamon Tea*
Cinnamon Sticks for Stirrers
Pumpernickel & Cheddar Triangles*
Piquant Ham Squares*
Cucumber & Watercress Sandwiches*
Apple & Walnut Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Cranberry Orange Bread*
Brown Sugar Shortbread*
Lemon Curd*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

Winter Tea Menu

Orange Spiced Tea*
Toad in the Hole*
Pumpernickel & Cheddar Triangles*
Savory Beef Spirals*
Chocolate Chip Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Grandma’s Christmas Nut Cake*
Grandma’s Russian Tea Cakes*
Lemon Curd*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

*For these recipes, check out our free tea recipes blog: teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, tea spices, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

Spring/Summer Tea Menus

Spring Tea Menu

Hot/Cold Lemonade Tea*
Cucumber Sandwiches*
Chicken Salad Ribbons*
Cherry Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Canadian Lemon Bread*
Sugar Shortbread Hearts*
Strawberry Freezer Jam*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

Summer Tea Menu

Berry Tea*
Cream Puff Tuna or Crab Bites*
Egg Salad Pinwheels*
Cucumber Sandwiches*
Apricot Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Pineapple Nut Bread*
Fresh Fruit Tarts
Lemon Curd*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

*For these recipes, check out our free tea recipes blog: teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, tea spices, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

Red Hat Themed Tea Party

A Red Hat Themed Tea Party
Based on the poem “Warning” by Jenny Joseph

This silly tea party is based on the poem “Warning” by Jenny Joseph. You may recognize it better as the poem “When I am an Old Woman”, the calligraphy version copyrighted by Elizabeth Lucas*. Consider this idea for a tea party with your Red Hat Society Chapter or as a fun way to initiate new members. Let it be a “jumping off” place for your own imagination and creativity!

Invitations:
Make out your invitation on long rectangular sheets of paper. Wrap them up like a scroll around something silly such as a kazoo, a small pickling cucumber, or a funny pen/pencil. Tie closed with a red or purple ribbon. Hand-deliver or send in a small mailing tube. (Don’t mail the cucumber!)

Outdoor/Indoor decorations:
Make a sign that says “If old and tired, sit here.” Attach to the sidewalk or a walkway where your guests will see it. Mark the spot with a big red or purple “X”.

Place a small dish or bowl of “store samples” on a table inside your front door. Have toothpicks available next to the dish and a sign that reads “Free Samples”. The samples could be cheese cubes, sausage bites, olives, small pickles, mini quiches cut into quarters, etc. Place the dish on ice if it will be there for more than 15 minutes.

Centerpiece:
Make four sections of a picket fence using Popsicle sticks. Spray paint the sections white, red or purple. When dry, glue sections together into a box shape. Place a vase of red, purple & pink flowers inside the “picket fence” box. Make a small sign that says “Flowers courtesy of Other People’s Gardens” and attach to a long stick. Place sign in vase among flowers.

Add to the table the following items:
– a small jar with a sign that says “Donations for butter accepted”

– an old fashioned Sales Counter Service Bell

– short sticks scattered around the table so that your guests can practice running their sticks “along the public railings” (your picket fence table decoration).

Purchase red and purple paper placemats from a party store to place under your centerpiece or under each guest’s table setting. You can use them as they are or cut them into the shape of a large hat. If you are really ambitious, you can decorate the “hat” placemats with paper flowers, ribbon, etc…

Favors:
Any one of the following is sure to bring a laugh!

Purchase a “terrible shirt” for each of your guests from the local thrift store.

Roll up a pair of lace summer gloves and tie with a purple ribbon for each of your guests.

Roll up used pencils and business pens in a paper coaster from a local restaurant and tie with a purple ribbon for each of your guests.

Purchase bookmarks** of the poem “Warning” aka: “When I am an Old Woman…” for each of your guests. These could also be part of your table centerpiece if you place them in a slipper or sandal on the table.

Make a starter jar of “Brandied Fruit” for each of your guests to take home. Be sure to include instructions for “feeding” the jar. (See our recipe for the starter instructions on our recipes blog, teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.)

Menu Ideas:
Many of the following recipes are available on our recipes blog, teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.

Red Hat Tea (available from the Red Hat Society store in two flavors)
Chicken Salad Ribbon Sandwiches
Cucumber Sandwiches
Toad in the Hole
An assortment of small pickles on skewers
Brandied Fruit over Pound Cake Slices
Red Hat Tea Cookies
Scones
Mock Clotted Cream
Jam or Fruit Curd

Quick alternatives for Toad in the Hole:
– Cooked sausages rolled in biscuit dough and baked
– Frozen Mini Quiches with cooked sausage added to tops before baking

* Copies available for purchase at http://www.elizabethlucasdesigns.com.

**Bookmarks are available through Elizabeth Lucas, www.elizabethlucasdesigns.com, and the Red Hat Society, www.redhatsociety.com.

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Quilter’s Tea

Quilter’s Tea
Inspired by Quilting Bees where great relationships are made…one stitch at a time!

Invite a group of ladies together. Maybe you have something in common such as a hobby or a volunteer organization. Great relationships require some work, so here’s where they can help you. Ask them to bring some favorite small thing from their home for the centerpiece (hopefully they will bring an interesting knick-knack which they take back home of course) and to complete one of the following phrases: My best childhood memory is…, My most embarrassing moment was…, One of my favorite quotes is…,The subject I loved most in school was…, You’d be surprised to know…, You’d never guess it, but I am really good at… Have them share their phrases around the table along with the good conversation that follows.

Centerpiece Idea:
Cover your table with a quilt. Get a sewing basket and place a flowering potted plant in it (be sure to protect the inside of the basket with plastic or cellophane). Use Spanish moss to hide the plant pot. Trail a measuring tape or two out of the basket and scatter a small assortment of buttons on the table. Place your guests knick-knacks in various positions in this centerpiece, ie: peeking out of the basket or plant, etc. (Or ask your guests to place them as they come in.)

Hostess Gift Ideas:
A collectible thimble, a bag of novelty buttons, a candle, a small potted plant, a homemade treat or something reflecting the interests of the group you have invited.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

Christmas/Winter Tea

Christmas or Winter Tea
Celebrate the season or chase away the Mid-Winter blues!

Christmas and the winter season in general can be a lonely or difficult time for many, maybe even you. So, start a new tradition. Host a Christmas tea or chase away the winter blues in the company of friends, old and new!

Tablecloth Idea:
Cover table with a solid color tablecloth. Arrange paper doilies or handmade snowflakes on it. Cover the snowflakes with store bought net or tulle. This will keep the snowflakes in place. And it’s inexpensive!

Centerpiece Idea:
Place a flat mirror of any shape on table. Arrange pillar candles, sculpted candles or themed candles (like fruit, trees, etc) of different heights in your chosen color scheme on the mirror. Sprinkle table with some iridescent glitter. Or check out our Quick & Easy centerpiece ideas.

Tip: Look in bargain stores for candles.

Hostess Gift Idea:
A new ornament, a handmade Christmas treat, or a bubble bath gift bag made up of a scented votive candle, a packet of bubble bath, a tea bag and a piece of chocolate placed in a decorated paper sack.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.