Is there a better way to celebrate VE Day (or any day!) than Afternoon Tea?
We’re huge fans of afternoon tea and picnics, and it seems like the perfect way to enjoy VE Day – indoors or in the garden.
It’s so easy to create an afternoon tea at home. You can have lots of fun with the kids organising it, and link in learning too: telling the time (what time will we have our afternoon tea?), counting (how many people, how many plates) and baking (measuring, reading, etc).
Here are some ideas and recipes to get you started.
The Basic Kit
Afternoon Tea Stand or Cake Stand
Nothing says afternoon tea like a cake stand. If you don’t already have one, you can buy disposable cardboard or plastic stands quite cheaply. You can find some on Amazon for delivery, and I saw these wooden cake stands that can be decorated too.
You might even want to try and make your own – I saw this great idea for a DIY cardboard cake stand on pinterest. When charity shops are back open, you can generally find some lovely vintage cake stands and if everything is a bit mis-matched, even better!
Crockery & Cutlery
You can’t have afternoon tea without cups, saucers, plates and cutlery! China cups are great if you have them – tea always tastes so much better in a china cup and saucer don’t you think? The kids love being posh and sticking their little finger out and using the special tea set is a real treat for them.
Make sure your cups, saucers, plates, sugar and milk (in a milk jug if you have one) are on the table before everyone sits down.
Setting the Scene
Whether you’re going for a traditional afternoon tea or theming it, there are a few essentials to set the scene.
We never have a proper tablecloth on the table (unless you could the wipeable plastic thing covered in felt pen!), so when we do, we are definitely having a tea party! Afternoon tea calls for linen, and feels nice and special. If you’re handy with a sewing machine, you could make your own!
We made our own paper bunting recently which was so easy….basically cut out some triangles (there is a template here on pinterest), get the colouring pens or paint out and create. We had spots, stripes, smiley faces…all sorts. Once you have coloured in the bunting, simply cut them out, use string or ribbon to attach together and hang them up! We had our afternoon tea in the garden on a sunny day and it looked fabulous!
A VE Day afternoon tea has to have Union Jack bunting of course, and there is a downloadable Union Jack bunting template here.
I found some great Union Jack Colouring sheets here on Twinkl too that might be useful to decorate your room!
Name Places & Menu
These are a good thing for the kids to do (keeps them busy for a bit whilst you’re getting other things organised!). You can cut out name places from paper or card (theme it red white and blue) and they can write names, draw a picture, use stickers and be as creative as they like. They could invite teddies and dolls too. I saw a lovely idea for some edible name places here.
My children love writing lists, so they relish the opportunity to write a menu! Let them think about the fillings for sandwiches and they can write everything down and make the menu look pretty.
I also found a good afternoon tea invitation template here.
Twinkl has loads of other resources for Afternoon Tea – role play packs etc here (For templates on Twinkl, remember that there is a parents offer here)
Make your afternoon tea area pretty with flowers. You could cut some from your garden or why not make some in red, white and blue for VE Day? There are some simple ideas of how to make flowers from your craft kit here:
Dress-up! Put your fancy clothes on as if you were going out! A great excuse to do this at the moment whilst we are on lockdown. My kids decided they wanted an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ theme at our last Afternoon Tea Party, so we had ‘Alice’ and ‘Catboy’?! at the table.