Formal Tea Party
At a formal tea party, tea and coffee are arranged at opposite ends of a table and friends of the host or hostess are asked to "pour out." A formal party will usually have twenty or more guests invited.
A formal tea party requires written invitations. You will also need to ask two friends to do the honor of pouring the coffee and tee. A formal tea party needs to have a large enough table to accommodate all of the serving items and all of the refreshments.
Refreshments for a formal tea party can include finger sandwiches.
Possible combinations for tea party finger sandwiches include cucumber and cream cheese, sweet butter with thinly sliced radish, a tuna or chicken salad and sweet butter with watercress. Finger sandwiches are made by cutting the crusts off of a slice of bread, then spreading a filling thinly over one slice.
The piece of bread with filling is then topped with another slice of bread and then cut into fourths.
A silver tray and tea service is placed at one end of the table. Besides the teapot, a small pitcher for milk, a sugar bowl, a plate of lemons and a pitcher of hot water need to be included. A tea strainer needs to be added if your pot doesn't have an infuser basket.
The cups and saucers for the formal tea party need to be arranged near the teapot.
Opposite the tea service for the formal tea party should be coffee service. In addition to the coffee service, a pitcher for cream, a sugar bowl and a pitcher of hot water should be present.
Chairs need to be set at either end of the tea and coffee table for the friends pouring to sit in.
This is an important job at a formal tea party.
The center of the table should be filled with finger foods. A wonderful formal tea party should have mostly sweets.
This includes cookies, cakes, scones, muffins and tea sandwiches.
It is nice to arrange these items on platters and cake stands in center of table, along with plates, napkins and cutlery.
Guests at a formal tea party should be asked to help themselves to food, and then mingle about the room. Everyone should be encouraged to meet one another if they are strangers.