Tuesday, June 2, 2015

A Mad Tea Party

There was a table set with tea things,
and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it.
Because Carol had popped through the Looking Glass and spent a good deal of time setting a table with finery, including some very large, Chintz, floral-patterned fabric samples which she had been given to her by her friend, Dyan. Out came the china dessert plates which she had given to her mother, having purchased them on a trip to visit her Aunt Peggy in Canada one summer many years ago. She had stayed at her Aunt's lake-side cabin reading old, water-logged copies of Reader's Digest, and had been forced to endure the shenanigan's of her boy cousins who took glee in dropping frogs in front of her face as she tried to relax on the wharf extending out in to the lake.

For the tea repast, which included no actual tea, but rather a liquid of a rather more intoxicating ilk, Carol made Coronation Chicken Salad Tea Sandwiches from a recipe supplied by Tea and Sympathy, a tea salon in the West Village. The sandwich uses both British and Indian flavors and was created as a way to celebrate the crowning of Queen Elizabeth II.
The Chicken-Salad Queen
Carol's party clothes:
Cacharel blouse purchased
at their shop in the Bourse Building
in Philadelphia pre-1988.
Paper-flower necklace
by Begoña Rentero of Madrid.
 The recipe which includes mango chutney,
curry powder and dried apricots.
The bread from Orwashers Bakery on the Upper East Side.
 The Tea Table.
 A boatload of cherries,
The sandwiches 

The tea party was in honor of two lovely women, only one of whom Carol had already met. This was Judith Boyd, a perfectly charming woman from Denver who not only writes a blog titled, ironically, "The Style Crone," but who also has a collection of hats so enormous that she must dedicate an entire room in her quite sizable house as "The Hat Room." 

Judith in a Japanese robe
and a froth of green tulle.
The second tea-party honoree was Jean Barrett, who is from Atlanta, and who writes a blog called Dross into Gold. Jean is a former model, and it shows as she gracefully poses with Valerie on her left and Diana Gabriel on her right. She wears a skirt, scarf and hat of her own design.
Jean models her "infinity-style"
scarf which may be worn in many ways.
Three fashion bloggers.
Flanking Judith, Jean (left) and Valerie (right)
who are The Idiosyncratic Fashionistas.
 Elegant Joyce Carpati
 Judith with photographer Feda Eid.
 Marsha Carlin on left, wearing a robe
from Viet Nam with Judith and Nonnie Balcer.
 Elke Kuhn with a great red hat
and vintage "Apple Polisher" bag.
 A gift to Carol from Judith:
a Pucci blouse.
 Debra Rapoport and Stan Satlin
Debra and Carol wear scarves which
were gifts from Jean Barrett.

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"At any rate, I'll never go there again!" said Alice
as she picked her way through the wood.
"It's the stupidest tea party I ever was at
 in all my life!"

À Bientôt!


  1. I'm sitting at work reading this and I laughed out loud. What a great post with great women. I had the pleasure of meeting Jean last year as she came through Seattle. What a treat and it's great to see her in blogland again.
    These photos are wonderful! And your food looks so delish. I may have to zoom in on that salad recipe. You had me at chutney. ;)

  2. Great! Love that you laughed.
    Thank you/

  3. Carol, the tea party was spectacular. The people (beautiful inside and out), the food, the conversations, the headwear, the outfits, the frivolity, the fun. You really know how to put together a party. I loved reading about the history of the lovely china dessert plates and the table setting was gorgeous! Your incredible creativity was enjoyed by all. I was thrilled and honored to be at this festive event! Thank you so much!

  4. Dear Judith,
    It was my pleasure, believe me, and thank YOU for coming, and for the special blouse that you so generously gave me. You bring an incredible light to any gathering.

  5. Oh Carol!! This is the best post! You got all the names and pictures that I sadly lacked (perhaps due to the libations?). It was utterly glorious, every moment, and I deeply appreciate your hospitality. I'm so glad you included the recipe too! I have to try to recreate it.

    I'm heading back to my post now to link it to yours. I'm typically a little slow with all this, so thanks for your patience!! And thank you once again for a truly memorable, joyous event.

  6. Quite helpful information on decorations for tea party. Last month, I arranged a dinner party with my friends by booking one of amazing LA venues. Decorated venue in a lovely way and had excellent time at party. Snacks were really tasty!!