End of Summer Party-Afternoon Tea Alfresco

Every year from I remember we always celebrated the end of summer with a party, a tradition that my dad began when we were kids. It was a chance to regroup and have one last bash before the school year rolled in.  Long gone are the days of school for myself but it’s still a good excuse for a party, right? It used to be very much a paper plate and plastic glasses type of affair but being slightly more matured now- I think we adults, could be trusted with the china!

This year is my year to be the host, as if I need an excuse for a party!   I have been chomping at the bit to have a garden party and luckily we’ve had some short bursts of warmer/dry weather here in Northern Ireland. In short, I mean one day in August…   The theme combines two of my favourite things-outdoors and Afternoon tea = Afternoon tea Alfresco!

I think there’s something really lovely about sitting down to a beautifully set table. Thankfully we recently purchased a new garden furniture set, the Gloria 6 seater set- so I was delighted at the thought of getting to use it.  Nothing beats a special gathering with friends and family together… What’s even better is some of them are great bakers so I supply the display and they supply the culinary delights.

I always enjoy decorating and some would say I take it too far…. Never one to disappoint I went over the top as usual. This corner of our garden gets limited sunlight so the millions of flowers I have tried to grow always die.  I used the Laura Ashley Lyla Damask wallpaper to make some paper bunting (Easy Tutorial at the end).  This beautiful duck egg colour brightens up this otherwise dull corner making it the perfect setting for the table. I love using bunting at parties because you can make it inexpensively from almost anything, left over wallpaper or scraps of fabric.


There’s nothing quite like the clink of a cup hitting the saucer- It’s most certainly not an afternoon tea without tea cups, right?  These beautiful Lyla Duck egg cup and saucers are  perfect, not only do they blend in with my other vintage mismatched china.  They also hold allot of liquid, which is great if you’re into large cups of tea or perhaps some sort of gin concoction.  These are perfect to protect your seat also… our family are very much ‘on your feet, loose your seat,’ kind of people!

Afternoon tea is never complete without a Victoria sponge and here it is displayed with the equally beautiful Lyla duck egg cake slice.  I used the cake plates and forks from yes; you’ve guessed it the Lyla duck egg range for serving all the treats. I think they are just perfect for mixing and matching with my vintage collection.  The colours are subtle so they complement various patterns and they’re the perfect size to cram all the cake your heart desires on. Don’t these cute bird tealights fit perfectly amongst the table display, perfect for the evening when the sun starts to go down.


you will need;

fabric or paper

binding or ribbon

scissors & a sewing machine

  1. Using a template as  basis cut as many flags as you think you will need.
  2. Using your binding or ribbon, line them up and secure the flag to the binding with a pin.
  3. Once lined up Sew together using a sewing machine

Anyhow I love how it all turned out and everyone certainly enjoyed themselves…including the boys!

Thanks for reading xxx


 Collaboration with Laura Ashley 





1 Comment

  1. Linda
    October 1, 2017 / 9:21 am

    Rita, you’re so creative! I loved the idea with using light colors with patterns. Beautiful photos. Enjoying your blog!

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