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Wonderland whimsy tea party

Haley and Lauren Fox of Alice's Tea Cup certainly know a thing or two about hosting fun and exciting birthday parties. The owners of New York City’s most whimsical eatery are here to share their love of afternoon tea birthday parties with their favorite group of girls: you! Take their tips to heart and turn on your imagination, girlies, ‘cause we’re on our way to Wonderland.
 

Down the rabbit hole

 

For a party right out of Lewis Carroll’s classic children’s books, you’ve got to get the atmosphere just right. If weather permits, host your tea party outside in a spacious green area. Hang twinkling string lights and paper lanterns to set the tone of sophistication and wonderment.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Set the table

 

Use mismatched cups, saucers and plates to give your table a magical twist. Find them up in your attic, at thrift stores, flea markets or yard sales on the cheap. You can probably find cute paper or plastic imitations at a local party store or dollar store. Sprinkle glitter or confetti along the table for a hint of sparkle. Wrap brightly colored scarves around tiered platters of cupcakes and cookies for easy Mad Hatter-inspired decorations. The Fox sisters suggest using vintage birdcages with brightly ornamented butterfly clips inside as centerpieces.

 

Dress code

 

Be sure to tell your lovely guests to wear bright, spring-inspired dresses and hats, and to come to the party with their best ladylike manners (i.e. giggle often, laugh loudly but absolutely no harmful gossiping).
 
 
 

Turn it into a slumber party

 

If you're hosting this wonderful party in your back yard, turn the afternoon tea party into a camping sleepover. Clear the tables and chairs and set up tents in a circle, but leave the hanging lights on for an added twinkle as you stare up at the night sky. Enjoy a slice of Alice’s delicious warm soft chocolate cake before climbing into sleeping bags, and wake up to delicious fruit omelets to keep the birthday party feeling going the next day!
 
Thanks to Haley and Lauren Fox of Alice's Tea Cup in New York City for their marvelous tips, recipes and images! You can learn more about their fab eatery and snag dozens of awesome recipes by buying their brand-new book, Alice's Tea Cup.

BY GL ON 1/27/2011 7:00:00 AM

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