Monday, November 16, 2015

9th Annual Regency Pumpkin Tea - November 14, 2015

My 9th Annual Regency Pumpkin Tea was this past Saturday: it's a time for afternoon tea with friends, a celebration of fall, tea and all things Regency! This was the first year of Pumpkin Tea in our new house since we moved this past Spring, and it was a lot of work to get everything ready in the house, but my honey was a huge help and it all came together in time!
Mom, Kat & I [photo courtesy of Gloria]
This year the event started on Friday, with Kat and Judy coming down on Friday to help with prep, hang out and enjoy a ladies evening. Judy had some last minute sewing on her spencer, I took the time to make a little progress on my (late) HSM for Sewing Secrets, and a lot of chatting and fun was had! Saturday morning went by quickly in tea food prep (a BIG thank you to Kat & Judy for all your help that morning!), and then ladies began to arrive...

I wore my 'Strawberry Picking' Regency cotton dress I made a few years ago, a turban wrapped by Judy (it kept falling down all day, but I told Judy it was my hair's fault, as turban's never seem to stay on my head), my chemisette, my painted American Duchess 'Pemberley' shoes, [and my P&P spencer for photo time].
Taylor and I having fun during photo time! [photo courtesy of Gloria]
Shoe shot! I'm wearing my painted (orange) American Duchess 'Pemberley' shoes!
On a completely serious side, the weekend was overshadowed by some sad events leading up to it: on Thursday evening, news that a costumer friend from Williamsburg had passed, leaving a husband and two small children, and many, many friends in mourning. She was an absolute sweetheart, well loved by everyone that knew her well: she touched many lives with her warmth and welcoming heart and will be greatly missed. That news was soon followed by the unfolding tragedy in France. It was difficult to set aside the sadness and tragedy for a time.

At the tea there was a lovely group of ladies this year, and as always, we had a yummy table of tea food: thank you to everyone for bringing such delicious dishes! There were a few little blips on the way to the fun besides the above (a burnt finger, 'onion eyes', bad traffic for a guest, a stressful morning for another). I myself had a bit of a rough night on Thursday, and some stressful and not so fun work events leading up to and right before the tea. It was nice though, to try to forget about all that for a time, and to focus on catching up and enjoying each other's company, and I think it all came together when everyone sat down to enjoy tea together!
Yummy tea food!
We did two fun number draws this year: the first for a HUGE fabric de-stash, where quite a few of the guests brought fabric (and trim and a few hats) and each person had 3 minutes to choose a fabric before the next person went. Thanks everyone for bringing fabric to de-stash, especially Isabella, who contributed the bulk of the de-stash!! Everyone came away with some fabric goodies and ideas of things to make with them, and the remaining de-stash fabric will be donated this week to a local charity.
Gloria looking through the massive de-stash pile
The second number draw was for a little gift draw, where I wrapped things I had purged from my own collection that costumers would be interested in (CDs, DVDs, books, fabric, cards, knick-knacks, feathers, hankies, etc.) and everyone picked a random gift and unwrapped it: I purposely wrapped a few extra gifts so there was some swapping at the end - it was great fun, hopefully everyone enjoyed that as much as I enjoyed seeing these things go to good homes!

The tea itself was SUCH fun: I was able to fit one long table into our family bonus room space (by putting two Costco tables together) and it was great that we could all enjoy tea at one table and catch up on what was going on with everyone, life, houses, jobs, families, events, etc. As always, there was some scheming and ideas for future events, which is always fun to discuss and plan, and lots and lots of good fun and tea. I served Cream Earl Grey, Sticky Toffee Pudding and Chocolate Vanilla Mint (no caffeine) at the tea, and kept refilling the Cream Earl Grey teapot especially!

After a time we all went outside (and inside) to get some photos:
Maggie, Jean & Linda [photo courtesy of Gloria]
My mother & I at Pumpkin Tea [photo courtesy of Gloria]
Taylor & I (Stephanie) shenanigans!
Everybody looked AH-MAZING, and there were a few new dresses, and re-wear of some lovely ones (it was all I could do not to steal Kat's French military inspired spencer). A huge THANK YOU to Gloria, of InTheLongRunDesigns, for setting up her tripod and taking these lovely group photos below! It was a touch too cold, so we didn't spend too long outside, just some pictures and then back inside for more fun.
Group photo [courtesy of Gloria]
Wedgie shot [courtesy of Gloria]
Even with the sadness leading up to the event, it was an absolutely lovely Pumpkin Tea, and I very much enjoyed it! A huge THANK YOU to everyone who came, who brought food, helped with prep, brought fabric for de-stash and who made this year's Pumpkin Tea a time of joy and friendship amidst times of pain and sorrow. It was a truly wonderful time with friends this year, that I will never, ever forget!

I look forward to welcoming you back (and others) next year for the 10th Annual Pumpkin Tea: for such a big anniversary, I'm going to plan something fun, so stay tuned for more!

All of my 9th Annual Regency Pumpkin Tea photos here!

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