How to Host a Bridal Shower Tea Party

A set table for teatime
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Bridal shower tea parties are a very traditional, elegant and sophisticated way to celebrate a bride's upcoming wedding. A bridal tea can be intimate, with just the bridal party attending, or a larger event including other female friends and relatives that will be invited to the wedding.

This shower theme isn't usually best for a co-ed shower since the food is lighter and the decorations are more feminine, but it doesn't mean male friends or family of the bride are not welcome. If a bride is interested in opening her bridal shower tea party up to members of the opposite sex so be it! An exclusive party is never a fun one, so it's nice to keep an open mind about who might enjoy this kind of event when sending out invites.

A bridal tea party is not necessarily a food-focused event so make sure guests know in advance they are joining for refreshments in light snacks so they can plan accordingly (either grabbing some heavier fare pre or post-shower). This is the brides moment to share her happy news with those nearest and dearest to the almost newlyweds. After all, you only get married once (alright maybe for some a couple of times) so might as well make some happy memories to remember the joyous occasion.

Using the theme of a tea party for a bridal shower immediately elevates and event, so make sure you choose venues appropriately. A tea party theme typically should be arranged at a nice hotel restaurant in your town or neighboring city, but an upscale restaurant or rentable hall space should do. Avoid hosting a bridal shower tea party in your home unless you have put a lot of attention and detail into your outdoor entertaining or dining room space. Setting a great atmosphere and a sophisticated tone for your event is step one before the cute little sandwiches even make their appearance. 

Party planning can be a difficult and time-consuming matter, so these are some ideas for hosts of upcoming tea parties to delight brides with an elegant and well-planned event.

Setting the Stage

  • Serve the food and beverages buffet style since there won't be a plated entree as part of your menu.
  • Decorate the buffet and guest tables with linens and flowers selected with the bride's colors in mind.
  • Ask guests to bring a small gift for the "wishing well" that fits with the tea theme. Items might include loose teas, tea strainer, tea bags, teaspoons, tea cookies.
  • Plan to organize a few bridal shower games for fun and to help break the ice when guests first arrive.
  • When the bride arrives, give her a small bouquet to welcome her, and she can use it to mark her place.
  • Create a tussy mussy for each guest and tie them with ribbon that is wide enough to write each guest's name—then use them as place cards.

The Menu

Party Favors

Send guests home with party favors that will help them remember this special party. Think about a gift that will fit with the bride's interests. You might give each guest any of the following:

  • A small container with loose tea and a tea ball.
  • A package of tiny cookies or candies.
  • Handmade soaps.
  • A seed packet with a trowel.
  • A cookie cutter and homemade cookie mix in a decorated jar.