An Afternoon Tea Party Fit for a King


Tea parties are set to make a comeback this year with celebrations for the King’s Coronation in May.

Whether you are marking the occasion or just enjoying all those extra bank holidays (Cheers your Majesty), we thought it might be good to brush up on our tea party etiquette.


Essentials for the perfect afternoon tea party

Street parties, village halls, garden parties, or kitchen tables, we imagine there will be little and large tea parties all over the country in May when King Charles is officially crowned. Whether or not you are a royalist, afternoon tea is always a good idea! We’ve put together some top tips to help you throw a fantastic tea party.

New English Garden



Cucumber sandwiches are the epitome of an English tea party. They are about as cliché as fish and chips on a Friday night or talking in great depth about the weather. A delicacy reserved for this precise occasion. The bread should be white and not cut too thick. The cucumber should also be thinly sliced and carefully layered. Perhaps one might add a careful layer of cream cheese, too. Sandwiches can be cut into small triangles or as finger sandwiches – that’s really down to personal preference! And crustless, of course.

Other sandwiches

Strawberry sandwiches are a surprisingly good combination. Recipe here

Or how about this Coronation Egg sandwich for something savory and topical? Recipe here 


A cake stand

Granted, it’s not essential but always a much-loved focal point of the table. A tiered cake stand can really elevate your tablescape! Pile up with cakes and sandwiches, scones and biscuits for an impressive-looking tea party. Our two-tiered cake stands are just the thing! Available in English Garden and Vintage Indigo.


Scones with jam and cream

I go jam first every time – mostly because then you can apply a more generous heap of clotted cream! Scones are always best homemade if you have the time. Look out for homemade jam over the next few weeks if you don’t have time to make your own. Otherwise, our strawberry jam from Cartwright and Butler is perfect!

Sugar bowl and milk jug.

You know it’s a proper tea party when the milk is in a ceramic jug and there is a bowl of sugar on the table! We love our small jug and bowls as they are so versatile and you can use them for all sorts of things other than tea parties.


Teacups and saucers and a teapot

Now these really are tea party essentials! In my eyes, it’s just not a party if your drinking from a mug! And as for tea, you can offer a few options, the standard breakfast or afternoon blend like this one from Cartwright and Butler might be complemented by some lighter and more fragrant Earl Grey, or something a little fancier such as a Darjeeling from Fortnum and Mason 

Josie's Blush Collection


Obviously, there has to be cake. There are endless options to choose from once you’ve decided on cupcakes, layer cakes, or loaf cakes.

Check out some of our favorite cake recipes on the blog –

Carrot cakes from our lovely cakery Cakes + Co

Chocolate and Guinness cake

Coffee cake

Easy fruit loaf

Royal Afternoon Tea?

The classic power-up to the English tea party is Royal afternoon tea – which includes the welcome addition of Champagne. Perfect for a celebration! Instead of Champagne why not make it a bottle of English sparkling wine? Nyetimber has a lovely one. And we have some stunning champagne flutes in our sale.




Whether indoors or out, bunting is the staple British street party dec you need to at your party. You’ll be able to buy reams of it this summer I’m sure, like this pretty handmade bunting available on Etsy.

Table linen

For beautiful florals, my go-to would be Sanderson, where you can order by the meter. I usually find this works out cheaper than an actual tablecloth! I’ve also picked up some lovely pieces from antique fairs, and this grey floral tablecloth is actually a piece of naturally dyed and printed linen from local artist Maddercutch and Co.


May might be a little early for garden roses but you’ll be able to make some stunning arrangements of peony, lilac, iris, and the last of the tulips. Did you know our Blooming Margaret collection was inspired by the flowers of May? It’s my favorite time of year for flowers!



All that’s left now …

is to find a pretty floral frock – and probably a big woolly jumper to go over with a brolly to hand. Because after all this is England and you never can be sure of the weather. And there you have all the key ingredients to a fabulous English afternoon tea party!

Why not check out our tea party collection to stock up before the summer? And enjoy the festivities over the Coronation if you are celebrating this amazing historical event!