Looking for a low-stress way to celebrate the season? Host a holiday tea party.
From a hosting standpoint, a holiday tea party is a pretty choice affair. It can happen at just about any time of day, you don’t have to serve a complete meal or alcohol if you don’t want to, and it’s easy to provide a variety of tea types without breaking the bank.
Plus, holiday tea parties are a ton o’ fun.
If you wanna make merry while keeping it chill, you’re 100% in the right place. Keep reading for a comprehensive guide to how to host a holiday tea party:
Why Holiday Tea Parties are the Best
Here are a few more reasons why holiday tea parties rule:
They can be dressed up or down. Tea parties are pretty open-ended in terms of the fancy factor. If you want to recreate Eloise at the Plaza but with more holiday bling, awesome. If you prefer an extremely low-key potluck where everyone pitches in and brings a dish or their favorite type of tea to share, that’s great too.
Everyone likes tea. OK, maybe not everyone likes tea. But you’re probably not friends with anyone who doesn’t. Plus, it’s pretty safe to say that tea isn’t going to offend anyone. There’s a tea type that appeals to just about everyone. There’s a tea type that suits just about every dietary restriction. See? It’s a real crowd-pleaser.
- Tea parties can happen during the day. The competition can be fierce for evening affairs during the busy holiday season. But unlike a cocktail party or dinner party, a tea party can happen at virtually any time of day — making it easy to schedule at a time that works for you and your friends. Tea with breakfast goodies at 10am? Why not? Tea and holiday cookies at 3pm? Sure.
How to Host a Holiday Tea Party
Now that you’re sold on the concept of a holiday tea party, let’s talk about how to host a good one (without driving yourself insane). Follow whatever parts of this guide serve you:
Decide What Type of Tea Party You’d Like to Host
Take a few minutes to envision the tea party of your dreams before you start blowing up your friends asking if they can come. There are a ton of different types of tea parties; here are just a few ideas:
- Ugly sweater tea party
- Tea-and-champagne brunch tea party
- I hate the holidays so this is not a holiday tea party but a winter potluck tea party
- Alice in Winter Wonderland tea party
- White elephant tea party
In an ideal world, you would send invites fairly early to lock in a date for your tea party. But if you’re a highly organized person, you didn’t need to be told that, did you?
On the flipside, if you’re panicked because you didn’t plan ahead and it’s already mid-December, do this:
- Chill out. Have a cup of tea. (Related: Big Heart Tea has plenty of soothing non-caffeinated tea varieties.)
- Text your besties, either separately or in a group chat. See who’s available and when.
- If you can come up with a date that pleases everyone, awesome. If not, consider hosting a more intimate gathering or a couple of tiny tea parties so you can include everyone, even if not at the same time.
Do a Little Budgeting
If you’re incredibly wealthy, you don’t need to do this. But for most people, it’s a good idea to consider your budget so you’re not surprised later.
Good news: a holiday tea party can happen at just about any budget — it’s all about your approach. For instance, if you have a very limited budget, you might want to host a potluck tea party or a tea swap where everyone brings a different type of tea and goes home with a few tea bags so that your upfront costs will be limited.
If you’re not sure of your budget, work the other way around. Make a list of things that you might want or need for the tea party, like special tea cups, a zillion types of milk, decorations, etc. Consider how much it might reasonably cost
So think about how much you can/want to spend, then proceed…
Plan Out Your Menu
Now for the fun part! Think about the best menu to fit the vibe of the holiday tea party you’re planning. There are so many fun directions you can go…
For instance, if you’re hosting a winter wonderland-themed holiday tea party, be sure to have plenty of wintry goodies on hand like BHT’s Blue Lullaby Mini Cheesecakes or some tasty snowball cookies.
Or if you want a menu that pairs well with your Christmassy red-and-green decorations, start with the tea! Make sure to have some nice green tea and ruby-hued Blushing hibiscus tea on hand (as well as other varieties to please every palate).
How about a cocktail? Tea-infused cocktails (like this one) are a great way to keep spirits merry and bright.
Get Some Decorations
It’s not a holiday party without the right ambiance!
Whether it’s holiday twinkle lights strung around the room, poinsettia plants placed here and there, or a holiday village featuring houses made from your recycled Big Heart Tea packages, be sure to add a little zip to your surroundings to set the mood.
Be Smart About Your Space
A little forethought in plotting out your party space can make a huge difference in the flow of the party.
People will automatically gather by the food or drink service areas, so take the time to consider where and how you’d like your guests to prepare their tea and/or food plates.
For instance, if you have your setup in the kitchen, people will stay in the kitchen. On the flip side, if you have different “stations” throughout your space where people can get food, add milk or sugar to their tea, etc, it can promote more mingling (if that’s what you want).
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Doing it all alone is so last year. As soon as you invite people to your holiday tea party, they’ll probably ask what they can do or what they can bring. Let them contribute!
Graciously accept your bestie’s offer to bring her famous shortbread cookies. Let your bestie come early to help you set up. Say yes when someone offers to help you clean up.
The holidays are all about giving, right? Give people the gift of being helpful, and give yourself the gift of accepting help. It’s a win-win scenario!
Put Out Trash Cans
Nobody likes crumbs, napkins, and discarded tea bags strewn about. Make cleanup easy on your guests (and yourself) by placing a few trash cans in clear view throughout the space. Pro tip? Include extra liners in the bin below the current one. You might be surprised by how much debris can accumulate throughout the course of a holiday party — even the simplest holiday tea party!
Give Your Guests Goodie Bags
Here’s a great way to create holiday cheer and goodwill — send them home with goodie bags of tea!
Depending on the style of your party, this could work in a few different ways. For instance, if every guest brings their favorite type of tea, you can divvy up the remaining tea bags and send everyone home with a little sampler.
Or, you could grab a few of your BHT holiday favorites like Blue Lullaby, Rosy & Bright, and//or Winter Chai and create your own goodie bags for guests to take home!
P.S. Don’t forget to give yourself a little present for being a great host. May we suggest a BHT Cozy Tea Gift Set from you to you?
Here’s a bright idea: instead of stressing this holiday season, have a fun holiday tea party. Armed with the tips and suggestions in this post, you’ve got everything you need to host a good one. Happy holidays from Big Heart Tea!
Have you ever hosted a holiday tea party? What was the theme? Tell us all about it, we love to hear from you!