Photo by Viveiros
Summer solstice, June 21st, promises a star studded night, a balmy temperate day and an ephemeral veil to fairy land. Legend has it that this is one of the few days of the year when the ability to cross dimensions is heightened and the fairies espy humans and witness their caprices. Celebrate and welcome them to your world by holding a summer solstice fairy tea party.
Now is the time to bring out all of your finery into the garden. Put a pretty lace cloth on the patio table accompanied by antique linen napkins. Bring out the crystal and hand painted tea cups. Set out your great aunts sterling and the pink Depression glass dessert plates. Fairies love pink. And, of course, fresh flowers from the garden. And don’t forget to put out a goodly supply of sterling silver thimbles. It’s only polite to offer your small guests the correctly sized cup to drink from.
Invite your human guests to eschew the traditional sun hat and formal white gloves and opt for dress up fairy wings and perhaps a wand as afternoon attire. Ask them to bring an antique hand held or small ornate mirror and lots of sparkly jewelry. You can place these around the setting and on the tea table to attract fairies as they love to gaze at themselves adorned in finery.
To tempt all of your guests serve delicacies as beautiful as your serving pieces. Pour a Kir Royale for the big girls in your fancy champagne flutes. Careful not to let the fairies indulge. They have a very low tolerance for alcohol. But they would enjoy some pink French lemonade which you can obtain from Trader Joes. Offer both hot and cold tea: Earl Grey for the hot tea and make a nice solar fruit tea for the cold offering like the black currant tea from Twinings. Float a fresh sprig of mint from your garden on top of the shaved ice for style.
Tea sandwiches should be made fresh that day. Thinly sliced bakery bread, with trimmed crusts, works best. Try a shaved beef with creamy horse radish sauce and a sliver of red onion and the prerequisite cucumber sandwich as a bow to English tradition. Why labor baking hot scones when you can obtain miniature blueberry or lemon poppy seed ones from Dominick’s. You must offer your guests fairy cakes. But, petit fours are time consuming to make, hard to find and when you do rather pricy. So, stop by Deerfield’s Bakery for a large selection of bite sized miniature pastries sure to please any fairy’s palate.
Besides gossip, entertaining tea activities could be extended to include reading tea leaves or granting wishes. Fairies will be very interested in the carryings on and will surely interlope. Have the camera at the ready. If you capture her image she will be under your spell.