A tea party bridal shower is the perfect prelude to a wedding, especially a modern vintage wedding. A tea party theme is classic, elegant, and a great opportunity for the bride-to-be and her guests to dress up. We love that the theme is flexible enough to be formal or casual, depending on your budget. Even so, we’ll take you through some budget friendly ways you can organize a beautiful bridal shower tea party that the bride will cherish.
Tea Party Bridal Shower Invitations
Choosing the perfect bridal shower invitations will help set the tone for the tea party, but just because the invitations look fancy doesn’t mean they have to be expensive. You can achieve a high-end vintage look for your bridal shower invitations on the cheap by going online to a source like Invite Shop, which offers all the customization you’ll need at some of the lowest prices in the industry. Look for invites with a girly pastel tones, teacup or teapot silhouettes, and a vintage font, like the example below.
Tea Party Bridal Shower Decor
Welcome guests to the bridal shower with a DIY chalkboard display in vintage lettering.
Chalkboard displays are easy to create using a vintage photo frame and a little chalkboard paint from your local hardware store. It’s up to you to choose the wording. Some of our favorites include “Love is brewing” or the bride and groom’s name paired with the words “The Perfect Blend.” Another alternative is the wording below, which features a simple, sweet rhyme “Let’s Have a Tea with the Bride to Be.” We recommend watching a few video tutorials on easy vintage calligraphy before creating your display. This YouTube video on faux calligraphy for chalkboards is a great place to start.
Use a teapot as a guestbook.
A plain white ceramic teapot is the perfect blank canvas for guests to sign their name. You will need to have a paint pen on hand that’s designed to write on ceramic (a regular Sharpie will eventually wash off). Once everyone has finished signing the pot and adding their well wishes, you’ll just need to bake the teapot in an oven according to the paint pen specifications so that the wording will remain on the teapot permanently. This way the bride-to-be has an excellent personalized gift that she can not only use to brew tea, but that will also remind her of her friends and family every time she sees it in her kitchen.
Use Thrifted Teapots as Centerpieces.
Finding old teapots at garage sales and your local Goodwill isn’t difficult, but chances are they won’t be the most attractive things you’ve ever seen. Remedy this by spray painting the thrifted teapots in uniform colors, such as white, gold, or even pink, depending on the color scheme you’ve chosen for the bridal shower. Craft bloggers have reported a lot of success with the Krylon brand spray paint.
Since the teapots are merely decorative and won’t be used to hold liquids that will be ingested, you won’t need to be as cautious as you would if the teapots were going to be used for their original purpose. We love the gold teapot on this display above that we spotted over on the Style Me Pretty blog. You could fill each teapot with fresh or fake flowers, depending on your budget. There’s a great tutorial for creating flower arrangements in teapots over on the Design Sponge blog.
Get creative with doily decorations.
Doilies may make you think of your grandmother’s living room, but they fit right in with a classic Victorian style tea party theme. Better yet, disposable doilies can very affordably be bought in bulk. Doilies can be used to create individual place settings, laced together to form DIY runners across a buffet table, folded over for use in dainty banners, or even molded into pretty favor cones, like the example below that we found over on the Heartmade blog.
Our favorite use for these delicate paper mats is in garlands. The internet is full of DIY garland tutorials using doilies folded in half and glued together over twine or another type of sturdy string. This simple version is always a good option when time is of the essence. If you have more time, however, and aren’t afraid of a little sewing, our favorite DIY idea is this one using doilies and cupcake liners that we found over on the Raising Up Rubies blog.
Tea Party Favors
While we’ve seen and love the idea of personalized tea bag party favors for a tea party bridal shower, we think loose leaf tea in little organza favor baggies is another great way to send guests home with a flavorful tea. You might consider printing off a label to go with it that details the type of tea and the brewing instructions.
Another DIY option we love is these adorable little tins of loose leaf tea featuring a free printable label that we found over on the Something Turquoise blog.
Tea Party Food
Tea party food is simple and affordable. The three essential food offerings are sandwiches, cakes, and scones, all of which have just the right amount of dryness to pair nicely with a warm cup of tea. All three can also quickly and easily be prepped at home. Finger sandwiches, for example, only require assembling the sandwich, cutting off the crusts, and slicing into squares or rectangles for a pretty display. Another alternative is to use heart-shaped cookie cutters for a romantic touch.
When planning sandwiches, be mindful that guests may have dietary restrictions. You might even include one tea sandwich option on gluten-free bread. Here are some ideas:
- Carrot, Raisin, and Hummus Sandwiches (vegan option)
- Cucumber, Cream Cheese, and Dill Sandwiches (vegetarian option)
- Egg Salad
- Chicken Salad
Tea Party Pastries
Tea cakes and scones are expected to be a little dry so that they can be washed down with tea. For a proper tea, you should always have some jam, lemon curd, and clotted cream on hand for guests to spread on their tea pastries.
- Mississippi Tea Cakes (made with buttermilk)
- Orange Cardamon Tea Cakes (made with orange zest)
- Honey Ginger Scones
Teas for a Tea Party
You’ll want to have at least five tea flavors available at your tea party to please a variety of palettes. We recommend that two of those teas be black teas, which tend to be sweet and flavorful. Earl Grey tea and English Breakfast tea are universal favorites for black tea, but other options include Irish Breakfast tea and Darjeeling black tea. You’ll also want to have some caffeine-free teas on hand. Ginger peach and lemon hibiscus are great choices. You can round out your selections with a spicy chai and a mild green tea so that there’s something for everyone.
Have a Tea-riffic Time
Now that you’ve set the stage with thoughtful details, lovely decorations, and delicious food and teas, you can move on to showering the bride-to-be! Raise a cup and saucer to toast the bride and have a blind tea tasting contest for a shower that’s steeped in fun!