Sometimes you get what you wish for! I had been filled with lust for a tea party in the spring and I was invited to attend a galant affair of a tea party at the Biltmore Estate hosted by Dawn Starks financial group. My mother is one of her clients and as a show of appreciation she hosts an annual tea party with themes that have altered through out the past four years. This year ladies were invited to have tables to show case their talents, passions, and careers. There was an amazing array of skills from authors, jewelry makers, painters, and quilters. Others shared their passions of working with children in need, having created all female law firms, and spotlighting areas they had chosen to volunteer their time for local organizations.
Being at this event evoked so many different feelings through out the afternoon. First, I was excited to dress up in my frock. I wore strings of pearls, white gloves, vintage heels, and red lipstick. For a fleeting moment one could be fooled that I may in fact be a lady instead of the snarky dry witted chica that typically inhabits my body. To complete my ensemble I desired a hat from a past era complete with a bird cage veil. However, as genetics have dictated, my cranium is way too big to fit in most all hats ever made. My people are a large headed breed, in fact more then once my siblings and I have placed bets on who possesses the biggest bobble head. A bet settled by whipping out a tape measure to settle the matter, and the results are never remembered since the debate tends to only arise following the emptying of several wine bottles. Anywho- I instead crowned myself with a feathered headband. I still brought my hair flair even if it wasn’t a hat. Many ladies did however showcase some amazing hats. It’s so fun to admire the hats ranging from dainty formality that have been passed through generations to hats that had been concocted with whimsy. If I was able to take photos with out feeling like a crazy stalker I should have documented the delightful accessories.
So after getting to play dress up and get all girly and prissy, I discovered mid tea party how girly and prissy I am not. After getting to mingle over champagne, then sit down for tea, plates of tea sandwiches were set before us.
Looking at my plate of dainty delicacies made me so happy. Here I was on this beautiful day, surrounded by strong vibrant women, celebrating in the most feminine fashion. After admiring the petite savory bites I couldn’t wait to taste them. They were so delish….chopped beets over a lemon aioli, spring pea hummus with prosciutto, egg salad with creme fraiche, black pepper goat cheese with glazed figs, and sweet cream and cucumber.
It was about this time that I realized it was fun to dress up for the moment and be a person I am normally not because I couldn’t imagine doing it for more then a moment. Eating with white gloves is really really hard. After the dessert course they became dotted in chocolate and had to be tossed in the bleach load of whites when I returned home. The second we sat down I had to kick my shoes off under the table because after having two babies my feet squeal at me when I try to rock the fashionable pointy toe high heel. I tried to focus on having polite poised posture but it was hard to pay attention when the points behind my ears were throbbing from where the head band felt to be clamped to my noggin.
I am thankful that while I got to participate in a style of gathering that is so historical and formal it has also evolved so much. I’m certain in generations past, tea parties weren’t centered around the incredible strength and diversity of the women hosting and attending them. It is an amazing community we live in where we support each other so much locally as well as being women supporting women.
And on that note, I cheers you with a tea cup being held with a gentle grasp and curled pinky…..and hope it’s holding tequila!