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!
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!)
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.
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…
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.)
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
Toad in the Hole
An assortment of small pickles on skewers
Brandied Fruit over Pound Cake Slices
Red Hat Tea Cookies
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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