what are tea parties

what are tea parties

What are Tea Parties?

Tea parties are social gatherings that take place over tea, cookies, and light refreshments. They offer a time for friends, family, and even coworkers to enjoy a cup of tea and relax in a cozy atmosphere. Tea parties are popular in many different countries, from Japan and India to countries in Europe and the Americas.

History of Tea Parties

The tradition of tea parties dates back to the late 1500s in the court of England’s Queen Elizabeth I. At the time, tea was first imported from China and the cost of tea was prohibitively expensive for everyday citizens. Only the wealthy were seen to have access to a tea party.

Tea parties went from being a court thing to a proper social event in the 1650s. London tea houses were created, and eventually, even the lower classes were granted access to a pot of tea.

What Happens at Tea Parties?

Tea parties are known to be a leisurely affair. Guests will indulge in tea, light snacks, and conversation. They are often decorated in a classic, English style with lace table cloths, often with paper doilies, and teapots. Common snacks at tea parties include delicate finger sandwiches, scones, cakes, and macaroons.

Types of Tea Parties

Today, there are a variety of types of tea parties:

  • Posh Tea Party: These fancy tea parties often include fine china, napkins folded in fancy shapes, and elaborate table settings. They are elegant and refined, and often take place in posh locations like high-end restaurants or resorts.
  • High Tea Party: High teas are usually held in the late afternoon and usually offer a more substantial meal than a traditional tea party. Snacks served at high tea parties may include casseroles, quiches, pies, and more.
  • Children’s Tea Party: These are a more casual affair that are popular among young children and their parents. Typically, sandwiches are cut into animal shapes and cookies decorated with bright, fun frostings.
  • Fantasy-Themed Tea Party: These types of tea parties can be inspired by characters or concepts from cartoons or books. They may include a particular color scheme, games and activities inspired by stories, and food made to look like characters or symbols from the story.


Tea parties are a great way for friends and families to relax and spend time together. Whether you’re looking for a sophisticated event or a more casual gathering, tea parties can be a fun and elegant way to enjoy some time with loved ones.


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