A good friend from church, Sharon, is expecting their first child- a girl- in two short weeks! We are friends, I am her Visiting Teacher and her husband is our Home Teacher, so we get together often and it was a complete no-brainer to throw her a shower. I am so in love with pregnancy and was so excited to celebrate my son at my own baby shower, so I was really excited to throw her the shower and celebration she deserves! She and I agreed on a tea party, the antique-y type and not the Mad Hatter type, as a theme for her shower and boy did I take off with it!
I used my own china set for an authentic feel, white, glass, and silver plating, fresh white flowers, and candles for decoration. I also used my own taupe tablecloth to add some warmth. I love using real fabric!
It was the first time I've ever used my china! Yay!
I used a combination of silver, milkglass, and white to decorate the refreshments. The little tea spoons in this picture came from Harris Teeter. I love them! The silver serving trays were from the $1 store, and I used my own white and taupe blankets and tablecloths to add some warmth to the tables.
Tea parties must have tea sandwiches! I had a great time researching typical tea party food and used these three recipes:
And my signiture desert, French Meringues! I made them in shades of blue to add some variety and match the blue flowers of my china set.
the cucumber sandwiches were actually cut using a tea cup cookie cutter. There's no picture, but they looked darn cute! I love a good theme :)
I added a garland around the room of alternating white doilies and tulle circles (packs of both found at the $1 store) on twine. The white, tulle, and brown twine were perfect colors and sweetness!
A string of white twinkle lights around the room was another perfect touch.
One activity was for each guest to write a note to Sharon and the baby on a matted picture of Sharon and "My hopes for you" card. The cards can go in the baby's scrapbook for later, and the picture doubles as a keepsake nursery decoration! This was a great baby shower activity to fill any gaps of time.
One of my favorite moments of the party was a spontaneous one (and after all of that planning...). Lots of Sharon's extended family attended from around the state so there was a mix of people who had never met. I gathered everyone to the living room in preparation for the game but asked everyone to introduce themselves and say how they know Sharon before we started. Each woman said something special about Sharon and her family, and I learned of the many ways they have touched other's lives with kindness and service, and how much everyone loves them and is looking forward to their baby. That few minutes of dedicated "This is why we love Sharon and are so excited for Annelie" time is pretty much the point of every baby shower, isn't it?
The active, group game was "Pin the Baby on the Belly"! I downloaded and printed a black and white cartoon baby image for each guest and had a maternity picture of Sharon's blown up to poster size at Office Depot for this game. The picture was a silhouette of her torso, which was perfect, and the print was only $3 because it was black and white! This game got everyone out of their chairs and laughing, perfect since many of the party guests didn't know each other.
And what's a baby shower without a special seat for the mother-to-be to open all of her new goodies?
Sharon with her mother-in-law, Ann, and her mom, Lee. (Her daughter, Annelie, is named after them both!)
My 6-month-old attended, and he missed two naps while I set-up, had the party, and cleaned up. So I spent a large chunk of the morning like this:
Thanks to a lot of organization, early preparation, and great friends it went really well, though! A *HUGE* thank you to Rachel for hosting the shower and helping with all of the set-up, Mary and Patti for some last-minute decorating, Christina for taking pictures, Hayley for helping with blindfolding, and Aimee for holding Whit.
It takes a village, people!
But I hope Sharon enjoyed her Tea Party Baby Shower as much as I enjoyed preparing it :)