The History of Afternoon Tea
The Afternoon tea ceremony has a rich and flavoursome history that is just utterly fascinating. Afternoon tea is a tradition that is a part of English history.
It all started in the 1800's when Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford who, at the time was a close friend of Queen Victoria and a prominent figure within London society complained of "having that sinking feeling" during the late afternoon.
She wanted something small to satisfy her hunger, nothing too large just something to see her through until dinner time.
From this want, the afternoon tea ritual was born. However, we need to highlight that it was traditionally only a small bite of something, not the big celebration it is now.
During the 1880s upper-class and society women would change into long gowns, gloves and hats for their afternoon tea which was usually served in the drawing room between four and five o'clock.
To explore the world of fashion and tea, have a read of our article 'Dressing for Tea'.
The afternoon tea tradition was born inside the houses of the rich and fortunate but once summer came around they wanted to take this fabulous time of day outside into their beautiful gardens.
When the ladies took the afternoon tea ritual outside it encouraged the lords and men of the house to take part in this fabulous activity.
Moving their afternoon tea outside meant everyone in the house could enjoy it. Tea was a fine delicacy at this time and the people drinking it wanted the whole world to know they could afford it.
So rich families would get their portrait's painted with fine china and exquisite teas featured so people would know their extreme wealth.
People wanted to be like their lords and ladies and from that day forward the world wide afternoon tea tradition was born. However, it wasn't a time for small bites anymore, it was a time for indulgent quantities of food.
The popularity of afternoon tea is enjoying a soaring renaissance these days. Find out more about Afternoon Tea in London and how to make the most of this world famous experience.
Another trend of late is to create afternoon tea at home. Select your favourite teaware and host your own party, picnic or little get together with friends.
Afternoon tea is a tradition that is a part of our lives, it is ever so English, classic and elegant. Celebrate this enjoyable occasion however you like it best!
Happy Afternoon Tea Times.
From Alison Appleton to Vintage Teapot - our large range of teaware comes in all shapes, colours and sizes.
Whether you are looking to complement your Afternoon Tea setting with something beautiful, contemporary, classic, trendy or practical. Look no further than our amazing selection of teaware and accessories!