High tea has been around for a long time (since the 1700s, to be exact), but since then it's changed a lot! It used to be served at afternoon tea time to men as they were sitting on high stools, hence the 'high'. These days, it's a bit more of an affair to go out for or host at your place with friends or family, so if you are in the tea-hosting frame of mind, you want to do it right.
We all know the mandatories like small cut finger sandwiches, scones, mini cakes and hors d'oeuvres, but they're not the only bits about high tea that make it so. Here's how to do it right...
Oh! And of course, if you need some inspo for what to cook, there are a few of our favourite high tea recipes at the end!
Decorate to delight!
One of the most fun elements of your own hosted high tea (either at home or elsewhere) is the decorating. Think quaint 50s style with a modern twist, which is always the safer and more broadly-appealing way to go.
Flowers are a nice idea and can either be broken and scattered around the table, bunched into custom bouquets or popped in cute little vases to serve as individual place settings. It's really up to you, as long as you include them!
In fact, if you're looking at investing in high tea as a regular occurrence, think about investing in some reusable faux flowers from our favourite collection here!
What's 'high tea' without tea!
As the name would suggest, high tea involves lots of the warm, herbal beverage (the benefits of which, you can read about here) that you can either serve with or without milk, so making the right decision when it comes to tea cups and saucers can be the make or break. Think of some kit with pretty prints, vibrant colours and delicate accents to up the pretty element of your tea.
Make it an outstanding affair
They call it 'high' tea for a reason, so stack your goodies up high! Placing your handmade, deliciously decadent beauties on a stunning cake stand can be the make or break of your whole operation. The prettier and more functional, the better usually, so go for something within your price range, obviously, but something that will knock your guest's socks off, too.
The regular steel frame option is a safe bet of course, but by selecting the right cake stand, you can really let your inner pizzaz sparkle!
And just remember, these never go out of style and can be reused til Kingdom come! Here are our favourite cake stands...
Something for your flowers
Sure flowers like the ones above are nice and all, but what good are they unless you've got something to pop them in? A vase will sort you out and the best thing? These can repurposed throughout the house afterwards so there's no need to toss anything.
Vases come in all shapes and sizes, though, so it's important to make a selection that suits you personal taste and the feeling you're going for with your high tea. Have a peek at some of this season's favourites right here.
Something to eat off
It's true that during a high tea, you tend to use your hands more than anything to bring the morsels of food to your mouth, but how can you possibly prepare that food without a plate to put it on? The dilemmas!
That's why we've put together a handy little list of plates and crockery right here to help you make some truly beautiful selections for your guests to eat off and admire.
Here are those favourite high tea recipes we promised you: